Sunday, November 06, 2005
The Helpers of God's Precious Children was founded in 1989 by Msgr. Philip Reilly, a priest from the Diocese of Brooklyn, as an alternative strategy not only to offer help to women coming to the abortion mills but also to maintain a prayerful presence, large and small, at these sites to pray for conversion of hearts.
Msgr. Reilly had previously experienced many frustrations during his many years of pro-life activism and finally realized that he had to totally depend on God to win this battle that human means seemed unable to effect. Consequently, he surrendered his will to that of God's and gave God permission to find a solution to the problems he faced. The Holy Spirit provided a new plan and the resulting prayer and sidewalk counseling strategy almost immediately began to experience astonishing success. Msgr. Reilly states that about 50% of mothers that approach abortuaries when the Helpers are praying outside change their mind and turn back.
The Helpers create a loving, peaceful, prayerful presence outside the abortion mill, creating a church-like atmosphere, in strong contrast to the the hateful, violent, hellish atmosphere of the abortion mill. Rather than hold up signs of protest, the Helpers stand facing the mill and pray for the mothers, their babies, the fathers, the sidewalk counselors who are ministering to the mothers, and the abortion mill staff. They generally bring religious items such as a crucifix and a statue or a large picture of Our Lady of Guadalupe with them.
The sidewalk counselor approaches the mother in a gentle, loving, compassionate manner, speaks to her, listens to her concerns, discusses them with her, offers alternatives, and shares educational literature as well as a rosary with her.
In snow and sub-zero temperatures or in smoldering 102 degree weather, the Helpers stand at the modern-day Calvary of the abortion mill where the innocents are going to die. The spiritual supporters are those praying in their home, church, or nursing care/hospital facility. They are those who cannot go out to the abortion mill, but offer their prayers and sufferings for those at the mill.
Msgr. Reilly believes that the greatest weapons in the war against the unborn are Eucharistic prayer and the Blessed Virgin Mary. Eucharistic Adoration and rosary prayer vigils are most effective in bringing the Light of Christ to the places of death.
Msgr. Reilly constantly urges the faithful to "go to Calvary" like the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. John, in order to stand in solidarity with the innocent ones being put to death. They go there with the spiritual weapons of prayer and love and offer tangible help to the women and men in need. The method includes sidewalk counseling and referrals to Crisis Pregnancy Pro-life Centers nearby so that any woman in need will not have any legitimate reason for having an abortion.
The "Helpers" method has been the most effective in the world for saving babies (and souls). At least twenty abortion mills have closed and more that twenty thousand women have left the abortion mills choosing life. The Helpers approach is now being used in at least 40 States. More than 80 Bishops and 5 Cardinals have participated in this ministry. By the grace of God the Helpers Apostolate has now spread not only throughout the United States and parts of Canada and Western & Eastern Europe but even as far away as Australia, New Zealand and parts of Africa.
Quotes from Msgr. Reilly
"Just as the price of our salvation was the incomprehensible suffering and sacrifice of the Son of God, so the price of converting a culture of death or any person involved in this culture will require nothing less than losing our own life, in whatever way God calls us, in imitation of Christ, for the conversion of the world."
"As gold is purified in the fire, our own crosses offered to Christ for the conversion of ourselves and the world will keep us from approaching the abortion bound mother or father with anger or bitterness."
~ Jean M. Heimann, copyright 2005
I am pleased to say that I have been trained in Msgr. Reilly's method and have worked as a sidewalk counselor, a prayer warrior, and as a spiritual supporter.