This past weekend I had the opportunity to participate in a Memorial Service and Mass for babies who have been aborted. After attending, my soul grieved for the lives lost and the pain these women and men have gone through because they believed the lie that abortion was the answer. The suffering they endured, some for more than forty years, impacted so many facets of their lives. Emotional pain and spiritual desolation, even as they went on to have other children and lead full lives, was always with them. Sometimes it was obvious and other times it lurked beneath the surface.
The Rachel’s Vineyard retreats provide spiritual healing through guided reflections using scripture, physical representations of what was lost, prayer, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and most of all a safe and loving place to grieve. There is a physical change in the people attending the weekend. As the weekend progresses their body language and countenance changes from fear, sadness and worry to peace and joy.
I encourage you, if you have had an abortion or know someone who has, to find out about Rachel’s Vineyard. The website has information about where the retreats are held and other information about the program. If you have a heart for healing, you can also be a part of the ministry. In our diocese, each retreat participant, including team members, has a prayer partner and the entire weekend is covered in prayer.
As people of faith, our prayer and hope is that abortion ends. As people of faith, we can reach out in love and minister to those who have suffered from it as well.
Copyright 2015, Deanna Bartalini
Art: Orange butterfly copyright 2014 AcrylicArtist via Morguefile