Candlelight Vigil marks half-way point of 40 Days for Life

by Michael Loretz

Despite the wet weather, more than 150 people gathered on the street outside Auckland’s AMAC abortion facility to pray and bear witness on Sunday evening (28th February). “Be my Light”, a special vigil hour for the unborn, was organised by Family Life International NZ to mark the halfway point for the annual 40 Days for Life prayer vigils being held in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch throughout Lent and up to Palm Sunday.

People from different walks of life, priests, seminarians, mothers, fathers, children, people of different ethnicities and ages, gathered together for an hour on one of Auckland’s busiest streets, praying, singing and standing in moments of silence to ask God for Mercy and healing in the hope that a new culture of respect for life will grow and thrive in New Zealand.

In Wellington, a similar special vigil, “Be a Sign of Hope” was held outside Wellington Hospital in the mid-afternoon and around the country throughout the day many others, including the Carmelite Sisters in Auckland, prayed in solidarity for the success of 40 Days for Life.

Michelle Kaufman, the Communications Director of Family Life International NZ addressed the Auckland gathering saying, “This is a spiritual battle and we already know the victor, it is Christ – he won the victory on the Cross. But we need to do our part too and be for others his hands and his feet.” She encouraged the gathering to continue to support practical initiatives that offer hope to the vulnerable and help build a culture of respect for all human life from conception to natural death.

Family Life International NZ run Crisis Pregnancy Centres in Auckland and Wellington and offer women throughout the country practical help and support including pregnancy counselling, post abortion healing and recovery, and education.

The 40 Days for Life vigils in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch will continue until the 20th March. Please visit to find out more and sign up.


Graces are received when you pray outside an abortion facility

Praying HandsWho on earth would want to spend an hour or so standing outside across the road from an abortion facility praying for the mothers the fathers and the babies and also the people who perform this dreadful act?

Well I did today, and I must say it was a sheer act of the will.   I did not want to be there – I have many things to do and places to go, but the graces abound for those who somehow find an hour to pray at this place of Calvary.

I was standing with friends praying, and a lady came up to me and bent her head and said hello and started to say my name.  I looked up and she said “Thank you Colleen.  My son Harry is 14-years-old now and he is amazing and has grown up very well.  He has a younger brother and we are all very happy.”

She spent some time telling me about her life since our last encounter and wants to come and visit us at our John Paul II Centre for Life.   I was awestruck that she would recognise me after all these years.  I had been praying outside that same abortion facility well over fourteen years ago when I met Yuki.  Our Centre supported her throughout the pregnancy and beyond.   Today she could not thank me enough for saving her son’s life.

So I plead with you, if you are able, please join Mark and his team in Auckland, or Clare and her team in Wellington, between now and Palm Sunday which is the close of this 40 Days for Life vigil.  I promise you that your presence does make a difference.  Lives are saved.  People are given hope.  The light of Christ shines in the darkness.

Please know that each one of you is always in our prayers and on our hearts.

Sign up for the Auckland vigil.
Sign up for the Wellington vigil.