One of the most moving pro-life events the Pro-Life Action League hosts each year is the Way of the Cross for Victims of abortion, held each year on Good Friday at abortion facilities across the country.
You can host a Way of the Cross service at the abortion facility in your area, and this page has all the tools you need, including an ecumenical prayer service book, templates to promote your event through e-mail and in churches, advice on practical considerations and more.
Though the devotion of the Stations of the Cross has Catholic roots, the service we conduct is completely ecumenical. People of every denomination join us each year and there is no material in the book that would be offensive to non-Catholics. Please feel free to join or host a Way of the Cross no matter what your denomination. Use the tips below to plan and host your service:
- Choose your time and location
- Recruit clergy to lead your event
- Publicize your service
- Print your service booklets
- Other Concerns
- Document your service
Choose your time and location
Choose the local abortion facility where you’d like to hold your event. If there is more than one facility in your area, you will want to take into account practical considerations like whether there is enough room for people to safely stand outside the facility, parking and other issues.
If there are no abortion facilities in your area, you could host your Way of the Cross at a memorial for the victims of abortion (find one here) or at a local church.
We at the Pro-Life Action League have held ours at 10:00 a.m. because it fits well with our local churches’ schedules, but you’ll want to check with churches in your area to make sure you’re not conflicting with other services on Good Friday.
Once you’ve decided on the details for your service, please email the Pro-Life Action League with the time, date, and location including physical address of your service so we can add it to our list of sites.
Recruit clergy to lead your event
It’s always a great help to have some clergy to lead the prayers at your service. You’ll want to get invitations out to priests, pastors or deacons as soon as possible. Good Friday can be a busy day for clergy with many services to conduct so you’ll want to give them plenty of notice.
Publicize your event
Get the word out about your event every way you can. See the Increase turnout by using good promotional tools and Promoting your pro-life event on Facebook actions for detailed instructions on how to promote your event.
Here are some sample text you can use or modify to promote your event on Facebook and Twitter:
- On the day Jesus was crucified, let’s remember all innocent victims, especially the smallest. #abortion #ProLifeGoodFriday
- Jesus united Himself with all the victims of suffering. None suffer more innocently than the victims of #abortion. #ProLifeGoodFriday
- On Good Friday Jesus died on Golgotha. His image is destroyed 1000s of times a day at OUR Golgotha, the #abortion clinic. #ProLifeGoodFriday
- Good Friday, the day Jesus DIED, is the perfect day to stand up for LIFE! #ProLifeGoodFriday
- Are you thankful for Jesus’ sacrifice on Good Friday? Then do something for your unborn brothers and sisters today! #ProLifeGoodFriday
We suggest using the following templates to aid in your promotional efforts:
For each of these templates, be sure to remove all bracketed text and replace it with the correct details for your event before sending these out. (And, in the case of the customizable flyer, be sure to download a copy to your computer first before making any changes.)
Finally, contact your local media to let them know about your Way of the Cross service. We’ve had several local television stations out to our Way of the Cross events in recent years.
See the Earning good media coverage for your pro-life efforts action for a detailed explanation on how to do that.
Use this sample press release as a template for your own. Note: When using all of these templates, be sure to find all the bracketed sections and fill in the correct information for your event.
Print your service booklets
We’ve put together the ecumenical prayer service we use into a booklet that you can have printed at your local print shop. We’ve had great results going to FedEx Office, but any office supply shop or small print shop should be able to print them for you. Download your Way of the Cross for Victims of Abortion Prayer Book [PDF] and tell them to print the number of copies you’d like on white letter-sized paper, black and white, double sided and saddle-stapled. They should be very cheap to print.
Get a few more copies than you think you’ll need. You might be surprised by your turnout, and even if you don’t use them all, you can save them for future use.
Alternatively, if you are planning to print just a few copies from home, you may prefer this version of the booklet [PDF] in which the pages are laid out consecutively.
You may have seen the video above that features us moving from station to station. That is completely optional. Feel free to move around to stations if you have them or stay in one place and simply pray through the book.
The First Amendment of the United States Constitution protects your right to engage in this kind of public prayer witness. Police are unlikely to disrupt your event, but please read the Working with police at your pro-life event action so that you’re prepared in the event you do have any interaction with police during your service. Should you have any concerns about this area, feel free to contact us.
Optional: Build Your Own Stations
At our local Planned Parenthood, we’ve been blessed with a vacant lot across the street from the facility. As such, we chose to build some stations of our own which we stake into the ground around the lot so we can walk from station to station as one would in a church.
To build your own stations, download the Way of the Cross images [PDF], or find others that you like, and get them printed at your a local print shop like FedEx Office.
We recommend having them printed on tabloid paper (11″ x 17″)—in color if you can afford it—and laminated. If you print tabloid size, make sure the print shop knows you want the images blown up to fit the paper.
Next, get 14 1×2 posts and cut them about 5′ tall with an angle on one end to stake in the ground, and nail an 18″ piece across the other end (see an example in the video, above).
Finally, staple the prints to the cross beam on top of each station. At your location, pound each station into the ground with a hammer. We’ve found it helpful to bring some smaller stakes to use to pound pilot holes so you don’t have to pound directly on the station very much.
If you’d like more information on building your own stations, feel free to contact the League by e-mail.
Document your service
Be sure to take pictures and videos of your Way of the Cross event, and e-mail us the pictures and videos or links to them if you’re posting them on Facebook, YouTube or other sites.
You can also post pictures or videos to the Pro-Life Action League’s Facebook page and we’ll share them with all our followers!
Now that you’ve got your instructions, you can get started on your plans for a Way of the Cross for Victims of Abortion at your local abortion facility. If you have any questions about hosting your own event, feel free to contact us. We’re here to help!