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Since then, many others have joined the cause and now there is a strong, united pro-life group bringing encouragement to many women and men and to those suffering from post-abortive trauma. The Glasgow-based Sisters of Life area also involved in the efforts with an outreach program.
Docherty, who is the director of 40 Days for Life in Glasgow, is happy to report that the initiative has grown and expanded to Edinburgh, Dundee and Aberdeen. This year's prayer vigils started on Ash Wednesday and continue through Palm Sunday.
“The first casualty of abortion is as we know 'the truth,' so by standing publicly in solidarity with the women, men and children whose lives are cruelly damaged by abortion we seek to set the truth free,” Docherty said. “As St. Augustine said, “The truth is like a lion, you don’t have to defend it: let it loose, it will defend itself.”Most abortions are done in Scotland through the National Health Service Hospitals in the same maternity units where mothers go to give birth.
Since the decriminalization law was passed in 1967, there have been more than eight million abortions in the UK. In Scotland, there were 12,082 abortions in 2015, which is approximately 30 babies a day in a country with just five million people.
According to “Termination of Pregnancy Statistics” from National Services Scotland, abortions increased 2.6 percent between 2014 and 2015 from 11,776 to 12,082. The increase was mainly attributed to women living in the most deprived areas of Scotland. The abortion rates are highest for women ages 20-24 (19.5 babies per 1,000 women) and ages 25-29 (15.6 babies per 1,000 women).
“We have no way of knowing if or how many babies have been spared from abortion due to our efforts,” Docherty said, “but, please God, our prayers are making a difference. We do know that hospital staff appreciate our efforts.”