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40 Days of Accompaniment: Ash Wednesday

February 13, 2024

Starting today, on Ash Wednesday, many of us practice the traditional observances of Lent — prayer, fasting, and almsgiving — which call us to more fully encounter Jesus in our hearts and faithfully follow his example in our actions.

However, our opponents misuse the Lenten season to advance their anti-abortion agenda with the so-called “40 Days for Life” — a campaign consisting of lining up outside abortion clinics across the country to shout at, shame, and intimidate the people who go inside seeking care.

As Catholics we are called to do something about the harassment conducted in the name of our faith.  

That’s why this Lenten season, we are inviting you to partake in 40 Days of Accompaniment — a weekly email series to reflect and act upon the profound spiritual, psychological, and physical harm the so-called “40 Days for Life” and other organizations like them have caused. Each Wednesday during Lent, we will send out an email that provides an action to help us work for a future where abortion seekers’ conscience-informed decisions are honored. We will also post it on our website, so you can easily share our message and action with your community.

Today, we are asking you to share with us how you observe Lent, to better inform how we can support our faithfully pro-choice community. You can fill out our survey here. 

Some things to think about as you take this survey: If your parish participates in the so-called “4o Days for Life,” are you comfortable observing Lent at church as a pro-choice Catholic? Or do you feel unwelcome and go elsewhere — or stay at home? How do you mark the Lenten season in a way that reflects your pro-choice Catholic values? Do you feel spiritually connected to the Lenten season?

However you observe Lent, Catholics for Choice wants to hear from you. We know that even though most Catholics support abortion access, harassment from those who partake in the “40 Days for Life” contributes to the culture of shame, silence, and stigma around abortion in our church that often makes pro-choice Catholics feel alone.

Know, as we do, that you are not alone. That’s why we want to learn how we can better support you during this holy season and create community together around our shared faithfully pro-choice values.

How do you observe Lent in your daily life, your family, and/or your faith community? Please let us know by taking this short survey. 

Thank you for helping us learn how to serve you better. We look forward to growing with you during this Lenten season.

Join our mailing list to receive our weekly 40 Days of Accompaniment emails, as well as other important updates from Catholics for Choice!