Instead of fueling anger against those in the abortion industry, one pro-life group is encouraging believers to pray and fast.
This Lent, the annual season of fasting and penitence beginning on Ash Wednesday (February 14th) in preparation for Easter, pro-lifers are encouraged to keep the abortion industry in mind.
"Every Lent we call on pro-lifers all over the country, really all over the world, to pray for three particular individuals who are involved in the abortion business in some kind of way," says Eric Scheidler of Pro-Life Action League.
This year's Lenten Prayer Challenge focuses on Willie Parker, Sarah Wallett, and Leroy Carhart.
Willie Parker, who just published the memoir, Life's Work: A Moral Argument for Choice, states that his Christian faith requires him to do abortions. He recently spoke at Mississippi State University, defending his work based on the Bible and admitting to the audience that he doubts the validity of the Bible that supposedly supports abortion.
Sarah Wallett once came out of a meeting of abortionists and knelt down on the sidewalk to pray beside pro-life advocates protesting the event. She later said, "I can imagine no person who is in greater need of Christ-like love and excellent medical care than a woman who is faced with an untenable pregnancy, and I am grateful every day to feel thy spirit and thy guiding hand on my work."
Leroy Carhart, meanwhile, is quoted as saying he thinks abortion is both religious and moral, adding, "I've prayed with many of the patients."
"This year we're asking people to pray for these three abortionists who actually claim a religious mantle for their abortion practice, who say not only is abortion consistent with their Christian identity, as they understand it, but in fact, in one case the abortionist says his faith requires him to perform abortions," Sheidler tells OneNewsNow.
Pro-Life Action League is also asking people to fast by skipping one meal a week.
"Every time you feel that pang of hunger, it reminds you who you're praying for," Scheidler explains. "It also reminds you of your own dependence on God, your own frailty as a human being to help build a little more sympathy for these people who need our prayers."
He submits that when you are praying for someone, it is really impossible to despise them.
"It's easy to judge and to look down on someone who is actually doing abortions, who is killing these precious unborn children in the womb, but when we fast, when we pray, it helps us to sympathize with these people and to see them as God sees them, to have more pity for them than anger at what they're doing, and we need that," he continues. "We need to recognize that every single person, including even abortionists, needs God's mercy. And we pray that they'll get it."
Even the people who do not specifically follow Lent can be involved.
"The very idea of a 40-day period of prayer and fasting is totally biblical, [because] Moses did this, and Jesus does this out in the desert," he says. "Don't get caught up too much in which tradition does what or what people call it. This is a period of prayer and fasting for a very important appeal to the hearts of these individuals who are so darkened that they believe that Christ approves of abortion."
Lent runs through late March.