Last Saturday, close to 250 Alabama citizens gathered in front of a construction site in downtown Birmingham. The skeleton of a building stands there, all paid for by Planned Parenthood Southeast to become a brand new abortion center, replacing the old dilapidated one in a different part of town.
Led by Fr. Terry Gensemer and Sarah Howell of CEC For Life, and joined by Patriarch Craig Bates and his wife Cathy, people gathered to spend over an hour in dedicated prayer, crying out to God that He would stop this abortion center from being built at the #WeSayNo City-Wide Prayer Vigil.
Prayer leaders included more than a dozen local pastors and pro-life advocates; national pro-life leaders like Catherine Davis of the Restoration Project; and even three state legislators: Sen. Dan Roberts, Rep. Arnold Mooney, and Rep. Matt Fridy. Patriarch Bates was the key speaker.
“What abortion is,” he said to the crowd, “is a spiritual issue. We’re fighting for ‘the soul of our nation.’ And as we fight for that, we’re fighting for children who are unborn, for children who are born, we’re fighting on a level of all life. All life is sacred, and all life has dignity and purpose – that’s what we’re fighting for.”
Patriarch Bates also reminded the hundreds of Birmingham citizens standing before him that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was also a Reverend. Because Rev. King and those he led honored God, America witnessed the unimaginable become a reality.
He concluded by saying, “I believe the unimaginable: this clinic is not going to be built. We’re going to tear it down in prayer. Keep it up! Until Alabama leads the nation and becomes the first state where abortion does not happen.”
Alabama is, in fact, one of the states leading the nation right now. Just a few days after the Vigil, the state legislature passed a bill in the House that will ban abortion from conception. It goes to the Senate, where it is also expected to pass before being signed by the governor. The aim of the bill is to challenge Roe v. Wade. Whether it will be successful is too soon to tell, but it will certainly create some turmoil for Planned Parenthood Southeast, which has continued to target Alabama.
Despite pouring millions into state politics and promoting itself as an important asset in the South, both PPSE’s Birmingham clinic and its Mobile location have been unable to perform abortions or even find a doctor for two years. And no women have suffered from it. In fact, Birmingham is one of the largest metropolitan areas in the country right now where women and children in the womb are safe from the abortion industry’s targeting. Instead, they are able to access excellent care from multiple pregnancy resource centers serving thousands of women, whether they parent or choose adoption.
As Fr. Terry Gensemer pointed out to the crowd at the Vigil, “We, in Birmingham, have not had a functioning abortion clinic in two years. That’s a spiritual victory because the shedding of innocent blood releases evil and evil spirits all over the city – and God is doing something powerful in our city…We believe Jesus is the one who has cleansed the air in Birmingham. We believe Jesus is the one who has shut down all these clinics here in Birmingham…And we don’t believe that God wants one here.”
With forty-five churches represented at last week’s Vigil, and more pastors than we’ve ever seen willing to come to next week’s meeting, we know that God is uniting us together. –Fr. Terry Gensemer
Next week, as part of the ongoing #WeSayNo campaign, CEC For Life will also hold a City-Wide Pastors Meeting for those in pastoral leadership willing to join the fight to stop Planned Parenthood and end abortion.
“We have seen God stirring the hearts of so many pastors during this campaign,” says Fr. Gensemer. “Planned Parenthood Southeast has been counting on leaders keeping silent and citizens remaining divided. That’s not the case in Birmingham. With forty-five churches represented at last week’s Vigil, and more pastors than we’ve ever seen willing to come to next week’s meeting, we know that God is uniting us together. Through His church, He will defeat abortion in this city.”