by Tammy Kocher, Executive Director of New Life Family Services
I am not usually one to speak up loudly about social issues or current events, especially those that tend to be polarizing. It’s not that I don’t care about them or don’t have strong convictions; it’s mostly because I so desperately want my actions to speak louder than my words. My heart is to unite, not divide.
I am 100% pro-life.
As the Executive Director at New Life Family Services, you would certainly expect that. However, being in the role that I am in, I also understand the various reasons women choose abortion.
I want to be a safe place for people who need hope. For those who are wrestling with very real and challenging circumstances that make continuing a pregnancy seem impossible. I want to walk alongside them in the midst of that darkness, showing them there is light again. I am proud to work for an organization that does all of these things with a holistic, life-affirming approach.
I also want to sit with those hurt by abortion and show them how loved they are by the Father who created them.
- To the scared teenage girl who feared her church and family would reject her…I see you.
- To the man who pressured his partner into an abortion…I see you.
- To the overwhelmed mom who believed she was doing the best thing for all of her children…I see you.
- To the man who had no choice in the decision…I see you.
But more importantly God sees you and His forgiveness covers all sin.
Being pro-life means caring about every single individual created in the image of God. This includes those who fight against everything we believe in. It means praying for the abortion providers and clinic workers and the very vocal legislators. It means recognizing the humanity of the born and the unborn. It means acting out of love.
Today, however, I feel the need to speak out with my words, as well as my actions.
As you have probably heard, in recent months, late-term abortion laws have been introduced or passed in New York, Virginia, Vermont, and Illinois. It is incredibly disheartening to see these laws so blatantly disregard the sanctity of life. The Governor of Virginia even went so far as to state that infants born alive after an abortion would be given medical care if (and only if) the parents so desired. Both of our Minnesota Senators voted against a bill this week that would require medical care for infants born alive after an abortion.
With this recent legislation, I can’t help but think about those impacted by abortion, specifically two abortion survivors I met at our New Life gala in 2013. This was one of the most surreal moments of my life, standing between these beautiful women that the laws said had no right to be there. Their moms chose abortion. They were supposed to have died. Legally. But they didn’t. It was such an impactful moment for me, thinking about their lives, their children’s lives and their future generations.
Just this week, I had the privilege of reuniting with these women who have become dear friends. Seeing them again, especially in light of all that is happening politically, fueled my passion to want to do even more. So what can we do?
For those of us who are pro-life, how can we use our words and our actions to speak loudly against the direction our culture is headed?
While I certainly don’t have all of the answers, I humbly ask you to join me in doing something. Consider the opportunities below:
- Become a life-sustainer (monthly donor) to ensure financial stability year round
- Host a baby shower to provide practical needs for our clients
- Share your story with us
- Help us launch our new Phillips community (Minneapolis) office as we still need to raise $199K in order to move forward with signing a lease and hiring additional staff
- Volunteer in one of our centers as a parenting coach, administrative support, group facilitator or sonographer
- Join our prayer partners
- Help us move our Rochester location to a new space ($110K still needed)
- Donate gift cards to Target or Walmart for our clients
- Host a baby shower for a single mom
- Be an advocate for healing by referring those hurting from a past abortion to our Conquerors program
- Discuss the issue with compassion, knowing that one in four woman will have an abortion in this country
- Volunteer to do childcare for your local MOPS group or babysit for a single mom
- Vote and contact your legislators to let them hear your voice
- For healing for the men and women who carry regret over their past abortions
- For the abortion clinic workers and providers – for God to change their heart toward life
- For the women and men who feel alone and afraid and believe they have no other option than to end their pregnancy
- For our elected officials on all levels
- Sign up for our weekly prayer email