Rockford Diocese Catholics Join Joliet at Pro-life Mass, Rosary
By Margarita Mendoza, El Observador Editor
September 5, 2019
AURORA—On Aug. 31 Bishop Daniel Conlon of Joliet said a Mass at Our Lady of Mercy, a Joliet Diocese parish in Aurora, to start an event for life sponsored by 40 Days for Life and the Pro-Life Action League.
Catholics from the Rockford Diocese joined the Mass and a rosary procession that wound 1.5 miles from Our Lady of Mercy to the Aurora Planned Parenthood site.
“This is critical. This is one of the kickoff events for 40 Days for Life,” said Father Kevin Butler, pastor of St. John Baptist in Somonauk. 
Father Butler took part in the procession featuring a statue of Our Lady of Fatima, he said, to give “witness to life through Mary who brought God into our world through her fiat, through her yes.”
About 300 people went to the Mass and nearly 200 walked  to the prayer site. A few people who couldn’t walk the distance took a shuttle bus to the abortion facility to join the prayers.
Bishop Conlon celebrated the Mass in Aurora on the feast of St. Raymond Nonnatus, patron of the unborn and of the cathedral of the Joliet Diocese.
In his homily, based on the parable of the talents from the Gospel, Bishop Conlon invited everyone to “to speak on behalf of life, using your talents,” but most importantly “to act on behalf of life.  ... Using your talents ... is more effective.” 
Among the participants in Mass was the DiMatteo family — Tom, Gina and Gaby. 
“We are here with my wife and my daughter to celebrate life and the importance of life for God’s creation. It is our first time here,” Tom said.
“Being pro-life is very important to me,” said Gaby, one of the teens participating in the event. “I like to support it as much as I can.” 
Walkers prayed the rosary as they processed to Planned Parenthood. 
Once arrived around the corner of the abortion clinic, speaker Nancy Kreuzer told her story of pain after her abortion. 
“This is a very dark place. I know we stand here together collectively on behalf of the countless women and men whose lives have been devastated by abortion,” she said. 
She shared her story, she said, so others “may receive any healing ... from God who is mercy and compassion.”  
Kruezer is Chicago Regional coordinator of Silent No More, an organization that embraces those who suffer from abortion,
Waterleaf Women’s Center, which provides women’s health care, is building a new facility “across the street from the third largest plan parenthood in the country, and we are building a beacon of hope on this property,” said Steve Obendorf, treasurer of the organization.
The building should be ready in October but will still need more funding for the capital campaign. And the weather hasn’t cooperated, he said. 
The dioceses of Rockford and Joliet both support this pro-life facility.
Once the building is ready “we will be able to attract more women to the culture of life from the culture of death ... where we hopefully can pray with them and guide them through a difficult pregnancy situation, and bring hope to them,” said Obendorf.