OTTAWA, Ontario, 17 September, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Canada’s upcoming 40 Days for Life campaign will smash previous records for number of cities participating. Eighteen cities in seven provinces have signed up to pray, fast, and witness 24/7 in front of abortion clinics to end the slaughter of the youngest members of the human family.

40 Days for Life first came to Canada in 2008 in two cities, Ottawa and Halifax. Now, four years later, it has grown by leaps and bounds. The 40 Days for Life campaign runs from September 26 to November 4.

“This is the most we’ve ever had and I think the first time we’ve gone double digits,” said Wanda Hartlin, assistant coordinator for 40 Days for Life in Ottawa, to LifeSiteNews.

The campaign was named after the numerous examples in the Bible where God brought about powerful change in human history in the space of 40 days. The earth was transformed by rains and floods for 40 days while Noah was in the ark. God gave his people the Ten Commandments only after Moses was on the mountain for 40 days. Jesus began his public ministry after fasting in the desert for 40 days.

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David Bereit, founder of 40 Days for Life, told youths at the Campaign Life Coalition Youth Conference last year that abortion is the “defining issue of our generation.” It is with abortion, he said, that the struggle between “good and evil, between light and dark, between heaven and hell” becomes most evident.

Hartlin said that abortion destroys human persons who are “needed pieces of God’s masterpiece puzzle.”

“When someone is born, a puzzle piece is filled in. When a child is aborted, there is a gap in the puzzle that will never be filled. Our goal for the 40 Days for Life is to pray and fast to end abortion because every human life is a precious gift from God and a special someone who has a purpose. We want every baby in the womb to be born alive.”

Hartlin said that praying for the period of 40 days “keeps awareness alive” in Canada where pre-born children have existed in a legal vacuum since 1988 when the Supreme Court of Canada struck down Canada’s abortion law.

“The abortion issue will never go away as long as babies are dying,” she said.

Mary Ellen Douglas, Ontario President of Campaign Life Coalition told LifeSiteNews that “prayer and action” are the two links that have kept Canada’s pro-life movement going for more than 30 years.

“You can’t have one without the other. You can’t have prayer without the action. Action is needed to get people moving and to keep the pro-life movement a ‘movement’. And you can’t have action without prayer. Prayer is needed to begin the action on the right foot.”

Douglas called 40 days For Life a “very good event” because it “starts people to pray and includes the action of witnessing at abortion clinics. It is prayer and action working together.”

Douglas said that Canadian participants in the 40 Days for Life campaign this year will have added urgency to their prayers as the abortion debate heats up with conservative MP Steven Woodworth’s Motion 312 heading to Parliament. The motion would establish a special committee to examine the humanity of the unborn child.

Since 2007, there have been ten coordinated 40 Days for Life campaigns that have mobilized people of faith and conscience in 440 cities across the world. More than half a million people have participated in the campaigns.

Over 5900 babies have been officially documented as being saved from abortion. A documented 69 abortion workers have quit their jobs and walked away from the abortion industry. The campaigns have seen 24 abortion clinics permanently shut down.

Canadian cities participating in 40 Days for Life 2012 campaign.