New elite and advanced-level program establishes prayer at abortion facilities 12 months a year
After years of development, 40 Days for Life launched its new 40 Days for Life 365 initiative (40DFL365) in December to facilitate year-round pro-life prayer vigils in select cities.
The exclusive program is designed for experienced 40 Days for Life campaign leaders who:
- host and continue to host both the spring and fall 40 Days for Life campaigns each year
- have a track record of achieving 12 hours of daily prayer at their biannual vigils
- will cover their local abortion facility with prayer all business hours the rest of the year (in addition to the two campaigns)
“After much development and testing in various locations, we are excited to release this new training, which will devastate abortion businesses,” said 40 Days for Life President and CEO Shawn Carney. “Local leaders have been asking for this, and those who qualify for the program are going to see saved baby numbers go up and ultimately see abortion facilities close. 40 Days for Life has experienced so much growth that we’ve learned a lot about what works and doesn’t work, and the leaders are eager to build upon success. Developing a platform for organizing year-round vigils was the logical next step toward ending abortion.”
The 40 Days for Life campaign has seen 1 million participants and served as a point of entry into the pro-life movement. 40DFL365 is only possible because of the strength of 40 Days for Life campaigns having a defined start and a finish. Carney added, “This new program does not replace 40 Days for Life but requires 40 Days for Life campaigns to be successful. We have seen in many locations how effective 40 Days for Life campaigns twice a year feed into a year-round presence that closes an abortion facility.”
The 40 Days for Life headquarters team began accepting applications to lead 40DFL365 vigils on December 1. Approved leaders will receive an advanced training curriculum and access to newly developed online tools to help recruit and deploy volunteers to the sidewalks at least one day a week throughout the entire year. 40 Days for Life headquarters team members will provide coaching and support to help leaders build toward their ultimate goal of having peaceful prayer warriors on-site every hour the local abortion facility is open for business.
Five local campaigns participated in a 40DFL365 pilot program this past summer. Longtime leaders in Orange, California; Columbia, Missouri; Aurora, Illinois; Austin, Texas; and Marietta, Georgia tested the new training curriculum and online tools to make sure they’re ready for worldwide use.
This pilot program saved a child from abortion within a week.
“There were people praying outside,” said a woman who was about to receive the first abortion pill before she had a last-second change of heart.
“She said ‘No!’ and left!” reported Kristina, the vigil leader in Orange. Kristina said another baby was saved from abortion through 40DFL365 in early September.
Suzanne in Marietta reported that her 40DFL365 vigil spared four babies from abortion over the summer. “Praise God for 40 Days for Life 365!” she said. “This never would have happened without the year-round presence.”
Catherine in Aurora is combining her year-round vigil with a robust sidewalk counseling presence. She said conversations in front of her local abortion megacenter are difficult, but critical. A father who stopped by to thank 40DFL365 vigil participants for saving his wife and unborn child from abortion agreed.
“A week ago, we were thinking about coming here and getting an abortion,” the father said. “Then we saw how many people out here actually care…I feel like God put you guys in front of us.”
Kathy in Columbia had maintained a year-round presence in front of her local Planned Parenthood, but she said the 40DFL365 program led to dramatic increases in vigil participation this summer and fostered two turnarounds from abortion facility clients who were redirected to the local pro-life pregnancy help center.
These early returns are promising and should multiply with many more cities holding year-round vigils in 2021.
“40 Days for Life 365 isn’t for everybody,” said Campaign Director Steve Karlen. “Leading one or two 40 Days for Life vigils a year is a daunting challenge. But for those leaders who have demonstrated they are willing and capable of tackling a year-round vigil, this new initiative can be a gamechanger.”