Her mother was going to abort her, but a prayer campaign changed that.
We don’t want to reveal the mother’s real name, so as not to compromise her identity. So, we will call her Mercedes, in honor of the title under which the Virgin Mary is the patroness of the Dominican Republic, her country of origin.
Last August, at the age of 21, Mercedes became pregnant for the second time. She had told her friends that she had “lost” first pregnancy, the result of a relationship with a man who mistreated her, after “falling down the stairs.” Those who knew the father suspected otherwise…
Ana, a “guardian angel” of 40 Days for Life
A few weeks before that miscarriage, a friend of hers had given her the phone number of Ana, a “guardian angel” of Spanish pro-life organization 40 Days for Life(40DPV, for “40 Días por la vida,” in Spanish). Although this movement is based entirely on prayer, it also has people who help and accompany (as “guardian angels”) mothers in difficulty who decide to go ahead with their pregnancy. In fact, that same friend had had a baby thanks to the help she had received from Ana and the 40DPV movement.
And although Mercedes ended up losing that baby, Ana kept in touch with her to accompany her through the many difficulties she faced on a daily basis.
Waitress in a nightclub, single …
At the beginning of last autumn,Mercedes realized she was pregnant again. Everyone around her told her to have an abortion. Ana explains why she was under so much pressure:
Her economic situation was very bad. She wasn’t sure who the father was, although it was most likely a man who wasn’t even her boyfriend. And although he didn’t mistreat her like the other one had, he had a very toxic relationship with her and had refused to get involved with the baby. In addition, she was a waitress at a nightclub in Madrid, and as soon as she told them she was pregnant, they would fire her.
Overwhelmed by her situation, Mercedes made an appointment to abort her second baby. What she didn’t know was that, just at that moment, the 40 Days for Life movement was starting one of its prayer campaigns. That would change everything.
Rescued from abortion “thanks to prayer”
At 40 Days for Life, we know that all rescues are the fruit of prayer, even if they aren’t women who literally stop next to volunteers praying at the doors of an abortion clinic. Because those of us who pray to God so that life triumphs over abortion, do so asking Him to enlighten and help all pregnant women in difficulty, and offering ourselves so that He can use us if He wants to.
It takes a lot of courage and clarity to face situations as difficult as those faced by many of the women we help. And although we’re here for them, in the end it is they who have to make the decision to give their child the possibility of living. That’s why they need God to enlighten them and take away their fears.
And that was exactly what happened in Mercedes’ case. Hundreds of volunteers of all ages were undertaking a campaign of prayer shifts — uninterrupted, peaceful, and silent — in front of abortion clinics all over Spain. Meanwhile, against all odds and with no one to encourage her, Mercedes felt in her heart the desire to ask for help. The abortion appointment had already been arranged, but Mercedes picked up the phone and called Ana.
Comprehensive help for pregnant women
You might expect this story to end after the birth of Mariana, who now babbles, laughs, cries, and wakes up in her crib like any other baby.
However, the ending is even happier. Because, as Ana points out, “contrary to what many abortionists say, pro-lifers are not disinterested in women; quite the contrary.”
For this reason, today Mercedes has started a new life. She now lives in a coastal city, with a new job, a new apartment, and all the material and economic support that she and her daughter will need for the coming years. In part this is thanks to the collaboration of Ana, the spiritual help of 40 Days for Life, and the generous support of various pro-life associations in Madrid, such as Red Madre. However, they are not the first and foremost cause.
Because, as Ana, who is the godmother of several children rescued from abortion, concludes: “The defense of life and the defeat of abortion is something so humanly impossible in our society, that every baby born is first and foremost thanks to God, who never abandons those who ask for his help.”