In 2010 I started praying for the first time outside a Marie Stopes abortion site with the Good Counsel Network, a Pro-Life Charity based in London. I was working in a bar at the time, so early in 2011 I started to pray for a job where I would not have to work Sundays. I mentioned to one of the team working at the Good Counsel Network, that I was looking for another job and that I may be able to volunteer more at the prayer vigil. He asked me if I’d be interested in full time paid work as a pavement Counsellor at the prayer vigil outside Marie Stopes for the Good Counsel Network. At first I said No but later I remembered I’d been praying for a job with no work on Sundays, he had said the pro-life job was Mon-Fri as the abortion site closed at the weekend, so I thought maybe this was the job I was praying for. I decided to give it a try and handed in my notice at the bar.
I received full training for pavement counselling for the Good Counsel Network using Monsignor Reilly of The Helpers of God’s precious infants’ counselling program. After six weeks of counselling at the clinic I spoke to many girls/women but none of them changed their mind as far as I knew. This bothered me, so one Sunday evening after Mass I prayed to God about it, I asked him if he wanted me to do this job? I was aware that the Good Counsel Network didn’t have much financial resources as they are a small charity and get no government funding, I felt bad getting paid every week of those six weeks and not seeing any results so I asked God to somehow let me know if I was a burden on their resources.
The next morning I went to counsel at the abortion site as normal. During that Monday morning a smartly dressed man in a suit with a briefcase came up to me, who I had never met before. He told me that he was praying the previous night and that God had told him to tell me that I was God’s eyes, God’s ears and God’s hands. That was all he said to me before he went on his way and I have never seen or heard from him again. I was dumbfounded because of my prayer the night before – I didn’t think I’d get an answer like that!
Two days later whilst at the abortion site again I spoke to a pregnant woman who was from the Middle East and studying in London, she said she would like to come to our office to speak further to one of our counsellors to see what help she could get to keep her baby. The woman told me that she had come to Marie Stopes that day as she felt she had no other choice and had not been informed that there were places like the Good Counsel Network. I took her back to the centre and left her with the helpers there and I went back to pavement counselling. Later that evening while I was waiting for a bus I received a text from the counsellor at our centre informing me that the woman was keeping her baby. I started jumping up and down at the bus stop with excitement. People were looking at me like I was crazy but it was such an amazing feeling to know that God had used me as an instrument to save that child’s life.
I spent 3 years doing that job (The Good Counsel Network still pray and counsel at that abortion site) and God used me as His eyes, ears and hands to help save many, many more babies’ lives, just like the gentleman told me that Monday morning. I even got to hold some of those babies after they born which was amazing and it made me think while holding those children that if nobody had been praying and counselling outside that abortion site those babies would have ended up as the remains of an abortion, this is what kept me motivated for those three years.
I would have loved to continue that work but when I got married and we had a baby of our own, London was becoming too expensive to live, so we had to move back to my home in Ireland.
There are organizations that have great training and support to help you do this work. We always used to pray before going to the abortion site and prayed while we were there. I only spoke to the women going inside if they wanted to speak to me and I always spoke to them in a loving way and was never judgmental. We were also there for the women who came out after having an abortion to tell them that God still loved them. I would encourage anyone to do this amazing life-saving work. You don’t have to do it full-time like I did. Even if you could do a few hours per week it would be making a real difference to people’s lives.
To find out more about the great work that the Good Counsel Network do and to find out about the INTERN programme they have click here
May God bless their ministry.