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University alumni pray for life

Marisa Iati | Thursday, October 13, 2011

Alumni, parents and friends of the University are aiming to log 744 hours of unbroken prayer for human life as part of Respect Life Month and the Month of the Rosary this October.

The initiative is known as prayLIFE, executive director of the Notre Dame Alumni Association, Dolly Duffy said.

“We’ve just been amazed at the outpouring from the Notre Dame family toward this goal,” she said.

This is the first year prayLIFE has occurred at Notre Dame, Duffy said. It was the inaugural project promoted by Beth Bubik, the Alumni Association’s new Life Initiatives Program coordinator.

Participants in prayLIFE register online to pray independently for an hour, Duffy said.

“We have what’s called a prayer calendar,” she said. “They’ll log onto mynotredame.nd.edu and put in [their] first name [and] the state. It’s so impressive that we’ve had so many members of the Notre Dame family praying throughout the night. Right now it’s one person, one [time] slot.”

The Alumni Association advertised prayLIFE to its approximately 270 Notre Dame Clubs worldwide, sent out news releases and spoke with other groups at Notre Dame, Duffy said.

“The calendar is close to 75 percent full,” Duffy said. “So we have about 25 percent of the 744 hours still available. One of the great things has been as we get close to a day where there are some open slots, just out of nowhere the slots suddenly get filled because people don’t want to see this continuous prayer broken.”

Duffy said PrayLIFE is somewhat similar to the 40 Days for Life campaign against abortion, but focuses on all issues of life from contraception to natural death. She said is unaware of any other university that has undertaken such a project.

“I think our alumni are so excited to see us look at the issue of life across the entire spectrum and put together positive programs that allow them to participate as members of the Notre Dame family,” Duffy said.

Duffy said that in the future, she hopes to begin working on prayLIFE earlier, create more publicity and possibly expand the online calendar to allow more than one person to register for each time slot.

“I would also say that if students are interested in participating, we welcome them,” Duffy said.