This past week, during convocation for the Southeast Archdiocese, Fr. Scott and Lizz Looker of Jacksonville, FL (along with Jamie and Arsella Tellier from Selma, AL) partnered up with Fr. Terry Gensemer and Sarah Howell of CEC For Life to organize a pro-life prayer vigil for the young people attending the convocation.
We felt so privileged to accompany these youth and their leaders to a very strategic, high volume location to be a visible witness for life. On Friday morning, for one hour, the youth stood at the intersection of Miracle Strip Pkwy and Beal Pkwy, holding hand-written signs with pro-life messages and praying that each car passing by would see and be impacted by this pro-life witness. The group also wore red Life tape over their mouths as a sign of solidarity with the pre-born. Every day in our country unborn children are denied their voice and their life by the atrocity of abortion. By giving up their own voice for that hour, our youth brought direct attention to the stripped personhood of the preborn.
William Hueholt, a youth from the Church of St. Peter in Wilmington, NC, shares his take on the event:
“It was an absolutely unforgettable experience, both because God moved so tangibly and because it was great to express facts. I feel sometimes like us youth grow up in an environment of tolerance to the point that we become afraid to ever state definitively What We Believe. (And it was quite amazing, really, how many people were obviously supportive. In a beach town I was expecting a lot of angry looks, but mostly we only saw agreement!) As we were standing there praying, I felt this intense sense that we were standing on holy, consecrated ground–to the point that I took my sandals off and stood barefoot, it was so humbling.
“Probably the coolest thing was this: When we started out, I was standing off to the side, but as the line shuffled around, I ended up being placed directly in the middle of the intersection (not where I had intended to be….) From that place, God showed me that this intersection, with the road in front of us trailing off into the distance, was like we were standing in a birth canal out of which He was bringing something new and incredible born for His purposes…I felt like it was a really, really significant event for Ft. Walton Beach and, indeed, the nation.”
We agree. At CEC For Life our hope and prayer is that God will birth something new in every young person who attended that vigil. We truly believe that this generation is capable of ending abortion, and we encourage each of the youth leaders from other diocese to create as many opportunities as you can for God to show His might and mercy through our young folk. If you don’t know how, simply ask. CEC For Life is more than willing to help.