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Here We Stand with a Word of Hope

Dec 07, 2016 | Abortion, Abortion and the Church | by Diane E. Schroeder

Here We Stand with a Word of Hope

    The world would have you believe that abortion is normal—a mere medical procedure that helps women.

    “For too many years, certainly for my generation, all issues about sex and sexuality were stigmatized. Abortion was, homosexuality was. And the exciting thing to me now is that young people are telling their stories and they are living out loud. More women are telling their abortion stories, and I told mine. I think once we get out of the shadows, and I think the LGBT movement has led the way in this, it normalizes what should be an open and honest conversation.”

    Cecile Richards, Planned Parenthood CEO

    In our culture, truth has been suppressed and the reality of abortion transformed into “reproductive freedom” and even “women’s health.” But, as Christians, we know the truth.

    • Here We Stand – Abortion is not normal. It turns a mother against her own child.

    • Here We Stand – Abortion is a tragedy that takes the life of an unborn baby and traumatizes a mother.

    • Here We Stand – Abortion is bad for women and forces them to carry the weight of grief and guilt.

    • Here We Stand – Abortion is a sin like any other sin for which Christ died.

    Word of Hope is a ministry of Lutherans For Life that exists to help women and men heal from their abortion experience. Word of Hope counsels women and men, helping them understand the depth of God’s love for them and the reality of forgiveness through the sacrifice of God’s own Son, Jesus, for the sins of the entire world, including their sin of abortion. Word of Hope helps them deal with their grief and guilt and overcome behavioral symptoms triggered by the abortion. There are so many people in our neighborhoods, families, and churches that are dealing with the loss of a child or children through abortion—mothers, fathers, grandparents, friends. Statistically you can assume one in three people you meet on the street and one in four people in your congregation have been affected by an abortion decision. What can you do to help these women and men?

    First, be compassionate and try to understand why women choose abortion. In my career, I have been blessed to work at a crisis pregnancy center. When I started working there I was a “good LFLer.” I could speak truth with the best of them. I knew what God’s Word said about life. I knew when life began. But at CareNet, I saw something new—real people trying to cope with the reality of an unplanned pregnancy. I saw women abandoned by their families and made homeless if they chose to carry that pregnancy. I saw women under enormous pressure from men in their lives who wanted out. I saw women who wanted to carry their pregnancy but were overwhelmed with financial problems and lack of support from their family and community. I talked to women who were so afraid of shaming their Christian parents that, somehow, abortion seemed their only choice.

    Second, promote Word of Hope in your congregation. You can help someone find healing. 

    • Establish a link on your church’s website for Word of Hope so people can find it easily (www.word-of-hope.org).

    • Place bulletin announcements in your church bulletin (especially on Sundays many find difficult, such as Mother’s Day or Life Sunday). Go to www.lutheransforlife.org/media/downloads.

    • If your church has other healing ministries, sponsor a group for post-abortion healing. Contact a local crisis pregnancy center to see if they can help.

    • Put Word of Hope brochures in the women’s bathroom or stalls at your church. They are available from Concordia Publishing House (www.cph.org).

    • Educate your congregation on the issue of post abortion by using resources available from LFL (www.lutheransforlife.org/life-issues/after-the-abortion).

    Let’s do everything we can to help families who bought the lie that abortion is “normal.” Most of us may not have sinned by having an abortion, but all of us have sinned horrifically and are in need of the blood of Christ to cleanse us from our sins.

    “[F]or all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).