Wednesday, July 13, 2011

PP predicament

Shortly before I left Chicago, I noticed clipboard-carrying representatives from Planned Parenthood on our block, inviting passers-by to answer a few questions. Turns out that over the past few weeks, they have continued to station themselves in our block--and in front of our doors, at times blocking access. It is awkward enough that several bookstore customers asked what was going on. (Although there's a 50-ft bubble zone around their clinics in Chicago, we won't go so far as to seek a similar injunction.)

Since Planned Parenthood's objectives (to say nothing of their activities) are diametrically opposed to ours, I think we need to respond somehow. Naturally, our response should be one that makes a positive contribution and does not simply consist in a creative way of saying, "can you please stay off our our property?" For instance, we could offer the Planned Parenthood reps a free copy of former clinic manager Abby Johnson's book. Or maybe put a 4' X 3' poster of the cover on our front window. Or station a clipboard-carrying volunteer at our door, offering passers-by a printout from Abby's website, with QR codes to follow her Twitter feed.

Any other ideas?

13 comments:

TellinItLikeItis said...

Have a sandwich-board wearing person standing next to them, with an enormous poster of an aborted child.

Pastoral? Maybe not. But enough to give them nightmares and maybe contemplate the murder they sell? Yup.

You can't sugar-coat the truth. Abortion is murder. Show it. If it does nothing but make them move away from you, so be it.

Maybe it will make people think beyond the abstract concepts of "choice."

Fran said...

I wish that I had some idea to contribute, but I do not. I will keep this in my prayers.

Bego said...

I like the poster, and like the clipboard people on the street, too!

How about a really large banner that passersby can add their names to...like a big prayer request. The big bold writing could say, help us pray for an end for abortion and people encourage people to add prayer intentions for pregnant mothers or other similar intentions. We (sqpn) have done similar things for people to write prayer intentions on, and when we provide colorful sharpies people get excited and do it! Perhaps you can build it toward a day of prayer or retreat or mass where all these intentions can be taken.

~Maria

Sr Anne said...

Terrific idea, Bego! It puts the issue in a completely different and (for our culture--and above all, for our location on Michigan Avenue) unexpected context. I will suggest this to the community and to our local pro-life volunteers.

c said...

Signable banner, whiteboards, markers...kids passing by love them, too..

If not, how about employing some Boanerge-y Curtis Sliwa-types in berets and jackboots (and crucifix jewelry) to mill around and ask what's with all the clipboards.

Ruth Ann said...

I'll be in Chicago at the Palmer House for the Lay Carmelite Convocation on the 21st of next week. I hope to stop by your book store and, God willing, meet you Sister Anne.

I hope the "invaders" are gone by then.

Sr Anne said...

Ruth Ann, if they're at the door, you can "kill 'em with kindness" as you approach...maybe if pro-life women take up much of their time, they will be less interested in this neighborhood. Maybe we'll even win them over!

Anonymous said...

It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words, therefore a picture of an unborn baby sucking its thumb tugs at my maternal heart

harv681 said...

The gall of these people chaps my hide! You can't be anywhere near their establishment with positive literature and prayer, but they can station themselves in front of your store/chapel! The pro-abortion movement claims it is "pro-woman" and all about choice and women's health. Have you read the article in the New York Times referencing the use of ultrasound in India and China to identify and selectively abort female fetuses? What do these "pro-woman" types have to say about that?

Michelle Therese said...

Invite them to share a cup of coffee and some lovely home baked food and shower them with the love of Christ without getting into an argument about morals... even as you bite your tongue and endure the fact that a person who supports baby killing is purposely disrupting your bookstore... and at the same time praying under your breath for the salvation of their soul and for the control of your own temper! (At least, that's how it would be with me. I would have to beg God for the grace to be loving and kind.)

Food and coffee go a long way to open the door to love! "We baked these especially for you."

I am willing to bet these petitioners have no real understanding of the sanctity of life. And so they really honestly believe that they are correct and you are all wrong and backwards and brainwashed. Engaging in a Turf War will only "prove" to them that we Christians are crusaders and extremists. :-((

Even still, they are being so rude!!! arrrrg

Sr Anne said...

So true, Michelle Therese: "Food and coffee go a long way..." Got any recipes?

Anonymous said...

How about your blueberry pie?

K T Cat said...

Ask a local Catholic grade school to have their second grade class draw pictures that illustrate (and say in a short text) why they're glad they were born. Post this on the sandwich board that commenter #1 suggested.