Six cities in Croatia participated in the 40 Days for Life campaign that recently ended ... and it's clear the volunteers' prayers and public witness have had a profound impact.

"Coming from first hand from the employees of the hospitals that support us, we learned that the number of abortions since we started praying dropped drastically in Zagreb and Osijek," said Ante Caljku?ic, who coordinated the initial 40 Days for Life campaign in Zagreb.

"Statistics show that the number of abortions in these hospitals is steadily declining, but it dropped considerably since we started praying," he said. "The head of the gynecological ward in Zagreb told me that during the 2013 there were around 120 abortions, and during the 2014, around 35. He said that the decline was already felt during the first praying campaign that we held."


"Believers from Slovenia have said on numerous occasions that they would like to cooperate with us," Ante said. "There is a great probability that the initiative will start in Slovenia as well."

Robert Colquhoun, 40 Days for Life?s international outreach director, traveled to several of the locations in Croatia during the campaign.

?It was a really wonderful visit to Croatia,? Robert said. ?The people have been really warm and friendly and extremely hospitable. The country has a population of 4 million and they have around 3,000 abortions a year.?

The campaign in Zagreb had 1,000 prayer volunteers. ?It is well organised and passionate,? he said. ?They have had prominent media coverage.?


In Sisak, Robert said, ?there were two babies saved from abortion, and doctors? consciences have been strongly hit by the vigil?s presence.?

Still, there is a strong history of abortion in this nation, which was once part of Yugoslavia. One woman walked past the vigil and told the volunteers ? without remorse ? that she?d had 17 abortions.

Robert said the country?s health minister is trying to force the hospitals that quit doing abortions to resume the practice. But it also appears the government is likely to become more pro-life.


"We are pleased that our bringing to awareness of the local community brought us big attention from the media," Ante said. "Even the most influential media gave their attention and discussed about the problem of child abortion -- several TV stations, including three of the largest, plus secular and religious web portals, religious radio stations, religious and secular papers." The campaign also received free advertising in Zagreb.

"Each day brings more and more work," he said, "and we believe that this initiative will continue to expand and grow in Croatia."



With 40 Days for Life, David wears many hats. Prior to joining the 40 Days for Life team, he was an award-winning radio and TV journalist. He has also served as a board member for a pregnancy help center and as publications director for a major national pro-life organization.