Pam Stenzel has been involved and working within the Pro-Life movement for many years. She began volunteering and now serves as a Director of five pregnancy centers and two mobile units in Florida. While working in the pregnancy center, Pam felt called to speak about sexual health, relationships, and sexual integrity. She began speaking at middle schools and highschools throughout the United States and found peace in her new prevention work within the movement.
Pam was surprised when people began to ask, “why have you left the Pro-Life Movement?” She explained that prevention is vital to ensure the movement, and the mission of Pro-Life continues to mature and progress. She states, “the movement is multi-faceted, and we each need to do the unique part that we are called and equipped to do.”
Pam recalls when she met the Support After Abortion team, she was moved by the message of healing. She began to see how healing those impacted by abortion could increase prevention within the Pro-Life movement, by preventing repeat abortions. So often, Pam is faced with young college girls coming to her clinic for a pregnancy or STI test. While they are, they report having a previous abortion, but did not know what to do or where to go after. If we work towards helping those impacted heal, they can make different choices, and we can prevent a repeat abortion.
Letting men and women impacted by abortion know they are not alone, to compassionately love, inserting healing quickly will not only save another child’s life, but will save the life of the man and woman as well.
Fr. Monahan calls the battle we face today, a culture of life vs. a culture of death. He then challenges us to be a culture of life, by finding our COMPASSIONATE voice again. Shame and condemnation make healing tough, if not impossible, but being with someone in their pain compassionately is bringing love and healing to those that are hurting.
Fr. Monahan quotes Pope Francis when he states, “the Church is a field hospital for sinners and not a museum for saints.” He encourages everyone to go out and heal wounds. Again, Fr. Monahan states that he can help heal others when we lead with compassion and love. Throughout the bible, compassion is used and recognized as the catalyst for healing. For example, in the passage of the Prodigal Son, we see the heart of the compassionate father running towards his broken son to welcome him home and heal his wounds.
We see compassion again in the Bible when Jesus meets the woman at the well. Jesus met this woman in her brokenness, and gave her the healing she had been thirsting for, by asking her for water, and showing her she was loved and valued.
Finally when the adulterous woman is about to be stoned, Jesus looks into her heart and soul and challenges those around them to do the same. When no one was able to condemn the woman, she was healed of her shame and left feeling loved.
Fr. Monahan encourages everyone to lead with mercy, love, compassion and healing. When we lead with these, we can touch hearts and souls.
Nathan Misirian, COO of Support After Abortion, dicusses the need to increase resources made available to men that are impacted by abortion. Together with Adam Fransden and Greg Hasek, they discuss why men are afraid, and what specific needs men have to heal and begin their abortion recovery process.
Today’s man is told abortion should not impact them, because of this men often will become silent when faced with an unplanned pregnancy or they will put the decision solely on the woman, because they are afraid to offer support. Adam Fransden, member of the Men’s Task Force at Support After Abortion, states “it is not toxic masculnity to stand up and say I want to be a father.” It is just as important that resources for men are provided so they are given this voice, support, guidance and healing they need. A man’s first instinct is to protect his child, when an abortion occurs, it damages this instinct and therefore leaves a deep wound on the man.
To help heal this wound, Support After Abortion has begun to mobilize so that everyone who needs abortion recovery healing will have access to it. As stated above, Support After Abortion, has created a Men’s Task Force, and has already and will be continuing to conduct consumer research to understand exactly how many men are impacted, and what specific healing programs will work for them. Research has already shown that men do not grieve the same as women, they don’t like to sit in circles, face to face with one another. With more consumer research men will be better served and have more access to healing that will be geared towards what they need.
Increasing collaboration will be crucial for building the capacity needed to effectively serve men impacted by abortion. Through the Support After Abortion, Network Partner meetings we can learn from other leaders and organizations, and work together to increase resources for men. Additionally, it is important to remember that just as people meet women where they are, it is important to start healing men by meeting them where they are as well. Creating a safe space, so they can unravel their roots, heal and become the father’s they were meant to be.
Click here to get your FREE copy of Keys to Hope and Healing for Men.
Amy Ford is the president of Embrace Grace, Inc., a non-profit organization formed for the purpose of providing curriculum and leadership support for churches so that they may support women and men with unplanned pregnancies.
Amy states, “If abortion became illegal today, the church would not be ready to help women with unplanned pregnancies practically, spiritually, and emotionally.”
In her book, “Help Her Be Brave: Discover Your Place in the Pro-Life Movement,” Amy discusses the various organizations that exist and ways you too can help support, or become involved with these organizations.
For those who are passionate about helping those facing an abortion decision, or impacted by abortion, Amy recommends organizations such as Support After Abortion, 40 Days for Life, Sidewalk Advocates for Life, Abortion Pill Rescue and more. Along with these great organizations she also suggests passing notes or words of encouragement to single mothers, handing out information to local pregnancy centers, or making it known on your social media outlets that you are a safe person to talk to and link women with the resources they need.
For those who want to work with pregnancy centers, Amy suggests organizations such as Focus on the Family, Care Net, and Heartbeat International. Again, outside of working directly with these organizations you can organize diaper drives and donate all of the items to local pregnancy centers, send monthly monetary donations to a local pregnancy center, or cards of encouragement and gratitude to those that work at a pregnancy center.
Sometimes the regret of abortion happens quickly. For those who have a chemical abortion, the regret can start as soon as they take the first pill of Mifipristone. Many times women are not 100% percent certain they want an abortion, and start to try to find a way to rescue their baby. This starts the Abortion Pill Reversal process.
The reversal process is safe and begins with emergency, on-going doses of progesterone. Progesterone has been used safely for years to avoid miscarriage or pre-term birth. As mentioned, this is started as soon as a woman calls the Abortion Pill Rescue Hotline. She is also linked with a local pregnancy center to receive the support needed for during and after her pregnancy.
The Abortion Pill Reversal Network is made up of physicians, medical organizations, and a medical advisory board that report the following statistics:
- Abortion Pill Reversal is 64%-68% effective
- At least 2,000 lives have been saved with APR, and
- There is no increased risk of birth defects with APR after Mifipristone is taken.
The media will communicate that the reversal is unlikely, and that women do not change their minds after starting an abortion. However, the above statistics speak to the truth.
“Denying women the truth is denying them real choice.”
President and CEO of Sidewalk Advocates, Lauren Muzyka, presents information on the history of Sidewalk Advocates, and how they train individuals to be compassionate members of this ministry.
The vision of of this organization is that peaceful, prayerful, loving, and law-abiding sidewalk outreach be present outside every abortion facility in the U.S. and beyond, redirecting all to life-affirming alternatives, thereby ending abortion. Some of their values include love, peace, servant-leadership and excellence.
With two hundred locations worldwide, Lauren describes Sidewalk Advocates as one imperfect soul reaching out to another imperfect soul. As a peaceful, prayerful, loving and law-abiding program, Sidewalk Advocates has resulted in seventy-two abortion workers leaving the industry, the closing of twenty-five abortion facilities, and nearly 13,000 mothers served and babies saved.
The key to success can be summed up in one word….love. Lauren states, “if we don’t have love we will not get anywhere. It is more important to be effective than it is to be right, and we cannot be trusted with these stories if we lead from judgment.” Sidewalk Advocates was designed to be a sign of hope. It is important to remember the trauma, and be gentle. It is important to invite people in, not overwhelm them. A calm offering of prayers and resources, while using loving language, such as, “we know it’s been a rough day, we love you!” is stressed during training and throughout an advocate’s sidewalk experience.