40 Days for Life Energized by New Life

Aaron Lambert

40 Days for Life is nearing its end, but that doesn’t mean advocacy for life has to.

That’s what Morgan Rosand, program coordinator to the respect life office at Catholic Charities, hopes for. The pro-life campaign recently reached its mid-way point and celebrated the occasion by holding a candlelight vigil at Lighthouse Women’s Center across the street from Planned Parenthood in Stapleton.

The campaign has been a truly concerted effort by the Archdiocese this year, Rosand said. Twenty seven different parishes and organizations will have sponsored 12-hour prayer days by the end of the campaign on Nov. 1, and 50% of those are parishes and organizations that are participating for the first time.

“It’s been really neat to see new life being involved in it,” Rosand said.

By the end of it, they’ll have also celebrated a total of 23 masses in the lot across from Planned Parenthood, a new record for them, Rosand said. Additionally, in an effort to engage the Hispanic community more, eight of those masses have been said entirely in Spanish or in English and Spanish, she said.

Roland said it can sometimes be disheartening for people when they don’t see the immediate effects of the campaign, but as “people who believe that prayer actually does change things and convert minds and hearts,” she was delighted to share that in the first 20 days of the campaign, there had been two known redirections from Planned Parenthood, and there could have been more, she said.

“That’s two that we know of, [but] you never know where the other graces and prayers could apply,” Rosand said.

For the second half of 40 Days for Life, Rosand’s hope is to keep the parishes and parish leaders energized and motivated, she said. She also hopes that parishes uses the 40 Days campaign to get excited and mobilized to come together in the biggest way: the March For Life in January.

“This is kind of the warm-up to the rest of the year,” Rosand said.

40 Days for Life still needs volunteers to cover prayer hours at Planned Parenthood for the remaining days of the campaign. Go to 40daysforlife.com/local-campaigns/denver/ to sign up.

Prayer Hours Needed
Mon., Oct. 19: 7 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Thurs., Oct 22: 7 a.m. – 9 a.m., 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Fri., Oct. 23: 7 a.m. – 1 p.m., 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Sun., Nov. 1: 7 a.m. – 2 p.m.

COMING UP: Don’t miss ‘the most important archaeological discovery of the 20th century’

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Don’t miss ‘the most important archaeological discovery of the 20th century’

Denver’s Dead Sea Scrolls exhibition brings to life Judaism at time of Jesus

Vladimir Mauricio-Perez

“Welcome to Israel, the Biblical land of milk and honey at the crossroads of Africa, Europe and Asia… an archaeologist’s paradise”: These words mark the start of a once-in-a-lifetime immersion into ancient Israel that the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibition brings to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science March 16 to Sep. 3.

The exhibition, sponsored by the Archdiocese of Denver, not only displays the authentic Dead Sea Scrolls that have captivated millions of believers and non-believers around the world, but also a timeline back to Biblical times filled with ancient objects that date back to events written about in the Old Testament more than 3,000 years ago.

“We are convinced that the Dead Sea Scrolls discovered in the Judean desert are the most important archaeological discovery of the 20th century,” said Dr. Uzi Dahari, deputy director of the Israel Antiquities. “These scrolls, written in Hebrew, are the oldest copy of the Bible.”

In fact, some of these manuscripts are almost a thousand years older than the oldest copies of the Bible that had been discovered, providing a great wealth of knowledge about Judaism at the time of Jesus.

“So many things have changed [since this discovery],” said Dr. Michael Barber, professor of Scripture and Theology at the Augustine Institute in Denver. “We now understand first-century Judaism in a way we didn’t in the past and see how the Biblical authors are breathing the same air as other ancient Jews.”

An exhibition of the Dead Sea Scrolls at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science will be on display until Sept. 3. (Photos by Andrew Wright | Denver Catholic)

The air of first-century Israel was filled with expectations for the coming of the Messiah. The Dead Sea Scrolls, which have been associated with a unique religious Jewish community that lived a structured life, are a witness to this reality, he explained.

“[These communities] were trying to live in such a way as to prepare for the coming of the Messiah. They looked forward to a new covenant and the restoration of the glory of Adam” Dr. Barber said. “We see so many overlaps of how the New Testament is a fulfillment of the Jewish expectations of the time.”

The exhibition immerses guests into the history of the chosen people of God, from artifacts impressed with seals belonging to Biblical kings, such as Hezekiah, to an authentic stone block that fell from Jerusalem’s Western Wall in 70 AD.

“We preferred to select scientifically important items, some very small, some very large… but all of great significance,” Dr. Dahari said.

“Israel’s archaeological sites and artifacts have yielded extraordinary record of human achievement,” added Dr. Risa Levitt Kohn, curator of the exhibit and professor at San Diego State University. “The pots, coins, weapons, jewelry and other artifacts on display in this exhibition constituted a momentous contribution to our cultural legacy. They teach us about the past, but they also teach us about ourselves.”