Thursday, June 23, 2016

Seeing Jesus in the Homeless


Wednesday after work (6/21/2016) I had a routine appointment located at a medical clinic on Maple Avenue in Everett. Approaching the driveway, I noticed a man who I presumed was homeless, rustling about in his tattered blanket on the sidewalk. I went inside the building to the 2nd floor locating a window to see if the person was still there. I did not see him in that same place.  I wondered where he went. 

I caught a glimpse of him heading toward my car to leave.  He somehow crossed the street.  Maple isn’t the busiest Avenue in Everett, but it is a main route heading to Highway 2. It is dangerous.  I carefully crossed the street feeling compelled to check on him.

I took him by the hand and he grasped my hand tightly.  He was obviously intoxicated. The beer can alongside was evidence of that.  I asked the man for his name; Gerry he said as he began to cry.  I  asked if he wanted help – although I wasn’t altogether sure what help I could offer Gerry.  I asked him if we could pray and he said yes.  He prayed aloud over my prayers for him, asking the Blessed Trinity to be present at this moment in Gerry’s life and to give me the courage and strength to stay with him until help arrived. 

Gerry related to me he wanted to either “get clean and sober” or wrap up under the bridge and die; he wanted to check out. I told him he was not going to die at least not today.  I would stay with him until we found help even if that help was temporary.  Crying, wanting help, Gerry had had enough. I'd imagine Gerry is somewhere between 60 and 65.  He had no teeth, appearing to look older. He was dressed mostly dark or black clothes with a navy blue jacket. Barely understandable, Gerry said he had no family when I asked; he didn’t trust anyone. Someone molested him at gunpoint the night before - pointing toward the bridge a hundred yards away.

I stayed with Gerry and called 911. It took two calls before the officer arrived.  On scene, the policeman began a series of triage questions to determine Gerry’s general condition.  The officer asked: if I give you a quarter and a dime, how much money is that?  Gerry answered, thirty-five cents.  I left after that.  Gerry was now in good hands, at least for now.  I must trust God through the professional assistance of the attending officer. P.S. Gerry is not his real name. Please keep him in your prayers.

 

 

 

 

 

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Wake-up Call


Saturday, 12/19, I went to the doctor having symptoms of chest pain (very strong pressure in the center of my chest) and was referred, then admitted to Providence Hospital in Everett for observation, scheduled for a treadmill - stress test early Sunday morning.  That test indicated there was a problem and immediately scheduled for the angiogram, which lead to angioplasty and four stents inserted.  All four (3-Left, 1-Right) blockages were between 90 - 99 percent.  I have a fifth blockage on the backside that is at 60 percent.  I see the cardiologist 1/13/16 to learn more.

I am doing ok, slowly getting back to normal, going for two or three short walks daily.  Oh, and learning half my meal plate should be green.  While I enjoy fruits and veggies, it is indeed getting old already, and it has only been one week.  We are learning what is out and what is in.  Whatever is necessary we can do this!  

Donna had her second cataract surgery the preceding Friday.  She is recovering well.  She is ecstatic to "see" so clearly.  I do not know what I would have done without her at my side the entire time.

Back Story-

About four to seven days prior to going to the doctor, I had experienced a strong, tightened chest pain, not sharp, more dull, but very tight - like my heart was being squished.  This occurred while walking maybe 40 - 100 feet where I work.  I kept telling myself, "That hurts, but its ok, I can do this...it will go away"...and it did.  Another day came, and it occurred again.

We have a covered swim spa outside on the patio.  Since being on second shift, I had been trying to swim more often before I leave for work.  One day, I entered the warm pool and enjoyed relaxing and light exercise, moving my arms in a partial butterfly swim manner.  The pain returned.  I got out of the pool and cautiously continued the rest of the day.

Donna recently had cataract surgery on her one eye; Friday, December 18 she had her second eye done at Capitol Hill in Seattle, and I was the driver.  Saturday morning was her check back appointment; off we went again to Seattle.  After I dropped her off at home, I checked into the doctor.  I thank God that I did.

I went to recovery following the successful angioplasty.  Initially, no chest pain as the nursing staff settled me in, making me comfortable.  A short while later, that all changed.  The IV liquids had ran through; I had to pee bad, but could not.  I do not know the maximum our bladders hold, but I had 760 cc stored.  It hurt!  Complicating matters following angiogram, I had to lay still for the required six hours so the groin entry site would close completely. 

I had some residual mild pain on the left side of my chest radiating inward which was due to the heart agitation during surgery.  I received three separate nitro doses.  That relieved the pain, but worked too well.  My blood pressure dropped to 72/60 and my head nurse flipped my bed, head down - feet up.  That was fun - NOT.  Finally, I found relaxation, medical staff and family all left the room; I had dinner and went to sleep.  The hospital released me Monday mid-morning and we went home.

At one point during the above anxiousness and intense discomfort, I had a low point.  Repeatedly with tears, I said, "I don't want to do this anymore!"  I reflected on these words recently while on my daily walk since being home.  I stopped, looked up in the sky as in listening prayer, and had an ahaw moment.  I thought back at my thoughts at work, "It hurts, but I can do this."

How foolish and selfish of me to have had that attitude.  As a Catholic claiming to "know and walk with Christ," my thoughts and actions were opposite.  During those days at work, I never bothered to seek help through Boeing Medical.  I never bothered to call the consulting nurse.  I never bothered to contact two friends who are nurses that I sing with to seek their advice (Barb and Suzie).

As Mom frequently reminds me, God never promised us a "rose garden."  However, He does promise to walk with us in our daily lives - IF we let Him.

Thank you for all your love and prayers! I am most grateful for Donna, our children (Kristy, Mark, Michele, David), my Mom, brothers and sisters, extended family and friends.  I love you!

May the blessings of the Holy Family (peace, love, joy) be with you during the Christmas Season and may you have a happy and prosperous  new year.

 




Sunday, September 13, 2015

Faith, Works, Prayer & Hope



     A profound and humbling experience recently happened to me while praying at Planned Parenthood. 

     It was late Wednesday afternoon before closing on August 26, which is surgical abortion day.  I grabbed some literature, my rosary, and placed myself overlooking the parking lot, intending to stay for only a few minutes.  

     Shortly after I began praying, a woman entered the parking lot, got out of her car, and proceeded to the entrance.  In a moderate tone I asked, “May I offer you some important information on Planned Parenthood?”  Did I ever get a cursing earful?  Hand gestures were not necessary…her words said it all!  As imagined, she did not accept my literature and went inside.

     I collected myself and continued praying.  Moments later, a staff member escorted a woman outside, motioning for her to walk around the building.  I assumed she needed to get some air.  She wore loose-fitting clothing, customary for women after an abortion.  I gently offered to pray with her as she wiped tears from her eyes.  “It’s too late” she said quietly.  I could only pray that in time she reaches out to God for his mercy, forgiveness, love and healing.

     I continued praying.  Again, a woman walked out of Planned Parenthood full of tears since aborting her child.  Grief is all over the faces of post-abortive women.  I made an effort to offer some assistance, but she shook her head and left in the awaiting vehicle.

     Finally, the woman who earlier cursed at me, she came out of Planned Parenthood accompanying a young girl who also terminated her pregnancy.  As before, I offered the literature.  She unloaded another earful on me.  It was brutal!  Some of us simply do not learn!

     I felt helpless to have encountered three pregnant women in a short time that had aborted.  Broken, I lost it and wept - knelling down in prayer on the sidewalk where I met those women who themselves must have felt empty, alone, confused and broken.  Lord, Jesus…

     Yet, there is hope!  That same day, I received an earlier email stating there was a woman who came to Planned Parenthood for an abortion, but had changed her mind; she was keeping her baby.  

     Since 2007, at least (18) infants have been spared from abortion in Everett during 40 Days for Life campaigns.  Their moms experienced the blessings and joys in welcoming a new child into their lives.  Thank you, Lord!

     Unfortunately, abortion is still the law of the land.  For over 40 years, this nation, our states, our churches, those who are followers of Jesus, each of us, including myself, have “allowed” abortion to continue.

     NOW is the time to humble ourselves before God as we seek His mercy and grace to end abortion in our midst?  With hope in our hearts, I believe it is completely possible.

     “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”  2Chronicles: 7:14

     “You formed my inmost being; you knit me in my mother’s womb.  I praise you, so wonderfully you made me; wonderful are your works”!

-Psalm 139:13-14

 

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Protesting Everett Planned Parenthood

 

The Snohomish County cities of Everett, Lynwood, and Marysville, Washington are home to Planned Parenthood facilities.

Saturday, August 22, 2015 an unprecedented, 400+ Pro-life citizens came together at Everett Planned Parenthood (organized locally by David Graves, Living Hope For Life Ministries) for a National Protest at Planned Parenthood joining 350 other locations across the United States. 

Why are people protesting Planned Parenthood?  Because Planned Parenthood commits some 330,000 abortions nearly every year, while receiving taxpayer funding.  Yet, it is more than the sheer volume.  It is the human realization that the abortion procedure intently and violently kills an unborn living child, while causing life-long physical, spiritual, emotional harm to countless women as evidenced by Silent No More Awareness, an organization supporting post-abortive women.

In recent weeks, the Center for Medical Progress, a (501C) group of citizen journalists dedicated to monitoring and reporting medical ethics and advances, released several under-cover videos.  The 30-month investigative study titled, Human Capital Project clearly reveals Planned Parenthood’s illegal, immoral, inhumane, and barbaric total disregard for God’s gift and the value of human life.  Planned Parenthood has no qualms harvesting and selling aborted body parts and tissue for profit.

Help end abortion, defund Planned Parenthood, and support a respect for human life from conception to natural death. Contact Everett 40 Days for Life at everett40days@gmail.com to pray, fast, and vigil for an end to abortion in our communities. Or, simply show up and pray at Planned Parenthood, 1509 32nd Street, Everett, WA whenever you are available. May the Lord bless you. May you be filled with His holy presence. Now is the time!
Ed

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Ed Mohs' Faith Journey, By John Wolcott, Jan. 7, 2009


Progress – Jan. 22 Pro-Life Issue - Ed Mohs’ faith journey

Jan. 7, 2009

 

 

By John Wolcott

 

A child of rape, Ed Mohs’ strong pro-life stance has been a part of his deepest beliefs since his early teens. Through his family and friends, he knows the value his life has had and he’s seen God’s spirit guiding him in his life of faith.

He knows, too, that even in states where there are strong anti-abortion laws, exceptions often are made for babies conceived through rape or incest. That would include his life, a life he’s deeply thankful to be living.

“In my pre-teens, I learned I was adopted. Later, I learned about my mother’s rape and her mental problems. For me, my past has led to my strong pro-life faith,” said Mohs, 53, a Boeing Co. engineer for more than 20 years, resident of Marysville and parishioner at Immaculate Conception church in Everett.

A participant in Forty Days For Life vigils at Planned Parenthood’s abortion clinic in Everett, a familiar face at January March for Life gatherings in Olympia and a frequent writer of pro-life “letters to editors” in area newspapers, Mohs is preparing for a Jan. 31 Walk For Life from Immaculate Conception to Planned Parenthood as yet another opportunity for witnessing to pro-life views.

“I’m not really an out-front type of person, but I just can’t help but be a witness, to offer reminders to people of those values, particularly in today’s society,” Mohs said. “I could say ‘no’ to these things and it’d be easier, but this becomes part of you. I can’t say ‘no’ to God when there are opportunities to witness for those views, even though it takes a great leap of faith every time to say ‘yes’ and get involved.”

Mohs first stepped out when he invited Human Life of Washington to participate in his high school family living classes, balancing presentations by Planned Parenthood speakers. In 1970, he gathered signatures to oppose Referendum 20, the ballot issue that made Washington the first state to endorse a woman’s right to abortion by a vote of the people.

Looking back, he attributes his years of pro-life witnessing to his family’s influence. His father and mother, Ray and Mary, provided strong Catholic standards for their family of eight children, including Ed and a brother who were both adopted. His late father was a grand knight of Lynnwood Council 5816 and brought Ed into the fraternity, where he later served as the council’s pro-life chairman.

“I was young enough to be molded by my family’s faith and I accepted that mold,” he said. “I was involved in pro-life symposiums and other Knights’ activities. It seemed just natural to me.”

A member of St. Mary’s Knights of Columbus Council 7863 in Marysville, Mohs said both the Knights’ and the Catholic church’s respect-life activities were positive influences.

“The pro-life movement helped to revitalize awareness of those issues in the 2008 presidential campaign. It was good to see our own Archbishop Alex Brunett and other bishops speaking out for life issues. Also, I saw the 40 Days For Life events attract more people to witnessing, including priests such as Rev. James Northrop and Rev. Bryan Hersey,” Mohs said.

The eldest of the Mohs family’s eight children, he remembers several foster children as well, including three Native Americans who lived 12 years with the family. He said he was deeply influenced by his father’s work with Catholic Charities and St. Vincent de Paul in Everett. In Mountlake Terrace, his mother continues to be involved with St. Vincent DePaul and Catholic Daughters of America at St. Pius X parish.

As a pro-life chairman for the Knights’ Lynnwood and Marysville councils at various times, he helped to sponsor many baby showers and supportive events for Pregnancy Aid of Snohomish County, which now operates from the Everett Knights of Columbus Hall beginning this month. Throughout the 28 years since his marriage to Donna, he credits her with being a strong supporter of the Catholic faith and many pro-life events.

Today, Mohs is an electrical planning engineer on Boeing’s 747-8 program in Everett, the father of four and grandfather of six. But he hasn’t forgotten his birth mother, Ann. After more than 20 years of searching for her, he located her in 2002. Because of head injuries suffered at birth and as a young girl, his mother had no idea she was meeting her son. He was introduced by one of his newly found aunts as a “friend of the family,” but he had an opportunity to see her and know she was secure and well cared for in a group home.

“I’m grateful that my birth family welcomed me and grateful for my mother. I’m also grateful for my own family, my parents, extended family and friends. All of them have stood by me in prayer and loving support. I’ve been blessed,” Mohs said.



Cutline:

 
Pro-life advocate Ed Mohs of Marysville, conceived in his mentally handicapped mother’s rape 53 years ago, credits his strong beliefs to his family, the Knights of Columbus and the Catholic church’s stance on respect-life issues.

***
John Wolcott and his wife, Roberta, are freelance writers, owning their own business Features Northwest, and are on the board of Pregnancy Aid. John is a member of Knights of Columbus Council #7863, Marysville, WA.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Darkness into Light


 
 

DARKNESS

 


It was Wednesday, March 18, 2015, 6:30pm.  Our Everett 40 Days for Life prayer had just started. I crossed the driveway to view the Planned Parenthood parking lot.  Just then, an Ecolab car had entered the driveway pulling up close to the building.  Stepping out of his small car, the courier began picking up and removing the clear freezer bag filled with the remains of aborted children from the little white box outside the Planned Parenthood staff door.
 

Despicable and inhumane!  Horrifying and ungodly!  I felt empty and without words. David Graves, friend and past Marysville 40 Days for Life Coordinator, witnessed this tragedy with me, as he had himself on many other occasions. Although this is "reality," it is unbelievable!  David reminded me, "We live in very grave and dark times."  The removal of fetal remains happens at least weekly, especially on Wednesday, following surgical abortion day.
 
"We were standing, we were kneeling; we were praying at the foot of the cross".....modern day Calvary - Planned Parenthood. Father Saguto, Pastor, North American Martyrs Parish, Seattle, WA, led us in the Most Holy Rosary. We gathered for prayer to acknowledge our midway point of the spring 40 Days for Life journey. We prayed not only for the end of abortion and the protection of the unborn, but also for their mothers and fathers, the Planned Parenthood staff and ourselves. Eighty pilgrims were there, many families with young children. 
 


LIGHT

 

The Midway vigil was over. Participants walked across the street to celebrate Pregnancy Aid's new location at 3202 Hoyt Ave, and were served cake, cookies, and juice. Visitors were excited and pleased to experience and share in this joyful occasion. Days earlier, Fr. Hersey, Pastor at Immaculate Conception Parish, blessed the building.
 
A former law firm, this two-story white office with wine colored red trim, seemed divinely chosen due to its immediate proximity to Planned Parenthood. "Indeed," said John Wolcott, Pregnancy Aid Board Member, this relocation was made possible by divinely inspired, achieved by a series of 'Godcidental' events."
 
John continued, "Its presence is certain to provide a visible, close by alternative for those visiting Planned Parenthood seeking abortions or other help. Pregnancy Aid, with its new six-foot long sign in the front yard and its 'Free Pregnancy Testing' sign in the window, provides an easy visible and inviting alternative to those entering Planned Parenthood."
 
The new Pregnancy Aid home is warmly decorated and furnished. The upstairs opens into a welcoming - reception area. Additional rooms are an executive office, separate clothing rooms for boys and girls. Another space is available for private, confidential one-on-one interviews with clients as Pregnancy Aid volunteers determine individual needs and matching available support services.
 
Downstairs is a large sorting room for incoming clothing and other infant accessories, including stacked cases of diapers. A handy kitchenette is convenient for volunteers and staff.
 

Pregnancy Aid material services include, but not limited to, maternity and baby clothing for mothers and families (100,000 since 1971), and a Car Seat Program - all free of charge. Pregnancy Aid further administers the state Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Program.







The 24th Annual Pregnancy Aid Auction this fall is a major funding source coupled  with countless individual donors. Pregnancy Aid benefits from several baby showers hosted by the Knights of Columbus, IC-OLPH youth, as well as, Archbishop Murphy High School, and many other dedicated supporting organizations.  


"In this new location," said Roberta Wolcott, Board Vice-President, "Pregnancy Aid continues its 44 and a half years of protecting the lives of unborn children by helping their mothers."
 
 
References & Statistics:
“At the Foot of the Cross” by Ray Boltz and Lawrence Chewning
“Darkness into Light” biblical theme: John 1:5; 8:12; Corinthians 4:6
40 Days for Life (national)
     Total abortions (1973-2013): 56.5 million
     Abortions per day: 2,899
 
 

 

Friday, March 6, 2015

Pregnancy Aid Opens at New Location

Hello Friends:
March 18th marks the half way point for the 40 Days for Life!
This event takes place on a Wednesday evening at 6:30 outside of Planned Parenthood. We will pray from 6:30-7:30 at PP and then walk over to Pregnancy Aid.
The highlight of this particular March 18th Midway Rally is the celebration of the new Pregnancy Aid located just across the street from Planned Parenthood. Pregnancy Aid director, Angel, is inviting us over for coffee and Lenten snacks after we pray the Rosary. There she will give us a tour and show us the grounds. Please come and join us in prayer for life and celebrating our new building!

EVERETT
www.40daysforlife.com/everett
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