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What Is LIFE CHAIN?
Annually, on the first Sunday in October, LIFE CHAIN invites the churches in each city and town across North America to stand on a designated local sidewalk and pray for 90 minutes, while holding one of the following approved pro-life sign messages:
- ABORTION KILLS CHILDREN
- JESUS FORGIVES AND HEALS
- ADOPTION: THE LOVING OPTION
- LORD, FORGIVE US AND OUR NATION
- ABORTION HURTS WOMEN
- PRAY TO END ABORTION
- LIFE—THE FIRST INALIENABLE RIGHT
In 2015, over 1600 cities and towns held Life Chains, and each Chain is posted at LifeChain.net.
During the Life Chain hour, idle chatter, frivolity, and both verbal and physical responses to motorists are strongly discouraged. LIFE CHAIN is a time for prayerful self-analysis, repentance, and serious commitment to helping end abortion in our nation.
Accordingly, LIFE CHAIN is not chiefly a demonstration, and its witness is not intended for the viewing public only. Instead, its first goal is to minister to its own participants—to those who call Christ their Lord and hold pro-life messages that declare abortion a grave evil that defames the name and holiness of God (Leviticus 18:21). Indeed the Church that Christ founded has drifted into cold indifference toward the sacredness of human life, and the result has been the mindless surgical killing and mutilation of over 45 million preborn Americans, plus untold millions who have fallen victim to abortive chemicals and medical neglect.
It is purposeful to note that LIFE CHAIN is church oriented and pastor focused and that the key to a successful Chain is for local pastors to educate their congregations about abortion and then lead them to the sidewalk where their Chain is to be held. Without firm pastoral support, a Life Chain will not fulfill its potential for saving lives and changing hearts.
The first Life Chain, with over 2,000 participants, elevated prolife out of the “handful of fundamentalists” mindset at our daily newspaper to a level of high respectability in Yuba and Sutter counties. It enabled us to unite our local churches and to inform our local media, law enforcement, public officials, and area citizenry about the unmerciful killing of preborn boys and girls in our community and beyond. By 1990, after additional Life Chains, timely picketing, prayer vigils, full-page ads, billboard campaigns, and comprehensive door-to-door distribution of pro-life literature, surgical abortions ceased in our bi-county Yuba-Sutter area.
In 1989, Bakersfield took LIFE CHAIN into Southern, CA with 7,500 participants, and Riverside, CA followed with 6,000 in attendance. In 1990, Orange County, CA increased participation to 17,000, while Fresno, CA had 10,000, San Diego 20,000 (and a month later 28,000), and Sacramento 16,500.
National Life Chain Sunday ’91 saw 373 Chains built in the U.S., with 771,000 participants. On National Life Chain Sunday ’92, more than 800 U.S. cities and towns held Chains, with participation of 975,000, while Canada had 80,000 participants at 97 Chains. National Life Chain Sundays ’93 saw over 900 Chains built in America and Canada, but attendance taking was discontinued due to our excessive preoccupation with numbers and a lack of emphasis on prayer.
From 1994 through 2002, approximately 900 Life Chains were built annually in North America; and while attendance declined significantly during those years, prayer increased substantially. Year 2003 saw an increase in the number of Chains, which grew to just over 1300 North American Chains in year 2007. For that growth, LIFE CHAIN is sincerely grateful, and we thank our Lord and Savior for His provision, protection, and enduring grace.