John-Henry Westen

From the desk of the editor.

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Praying, and praying, and praying in NYC

John-Henry Westen John-Henry Westen Follow John-Henry

I returned last week from a speaking engagement in New York City where I was asked to speak on Fatima at the 47th anniversary banquet of the St. Michael’s World Apostolate. What a bunch of prayer warriors!

Beginning with confessions and three masses – one English, one Latin, and one Spanish – the group held a rosary procession where at least three full rosaries were prayed amidst other prayers and procession well into the night in Flushing Meadows Park. I watched as women and children spent hours on their knees outdoors with little more than a strip of thin carpet on which to kneel.

Despite only being back at the hotel at about midnight, there was another morning Mass at 7:30 but mercifully an evening Mass too in Latin. The group was also back out to the Meadows Park for another Holy Hour prayer session by 9am.

Of the few hundred who attended the anniversary weekend there were many beautiful families full of faith and hope, but what was most striking was the tenacity of their prayers. For 47 years, despite snow, sleet, rain, and blazing sun they have faithfully gathered for their prayer vigils supporting clergy and laity alike with their Holy Hours, vigils, processions, masses and confessions.

New York City may be the seat of a lot of evil – with their huge abortion rates, for example – but it seems to be true that where sin abounds, grace abounds all the more. Congrats SMWA on your 47 years of ardent prayer and sacrifice.

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John-Henry Westen

John-Henry is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of He and his wife Dianne and their eight children live in the Ottawa Valley in Ontario, Canada.

He has spoken at conferences and retreats, and appeared on radio and television throughout North America, Europe and Asia. John-Henry founded the Rome Life Forum an annual strategy meeting for pro-life leaders worldwide. He co-founded Voice of the Family and serves on the executive of the Canadian National March for Life Committee, and the annual National Pro-Life Youth Conference.  

He is a consultant to Canada’s largest pro-life organization Campaign Life Coalition, and serves on the executive of the Ontario branch of the organization.  He has run three times for political office in the province of Ontario representing the Family Coalition Party.  

John-Henry earned an MA from the University of Toronto in School and Child Clinical Psychology and an Honours BA from York University in Psychology.