Florida Baptist Children’s Homes defends unborn through Sanctity of Human Life focus
Churches can educate members, provide post abortion ministries
Jan 16, 2014
By NANCY LEE BETHEA

Sanctity of Human
Life Sunday
is January 19

LAKELAND (FBW)—It takes nine months to grow a healthy baby inside a mother’s womb, but only a moment for the mother to decide to terminate the life of her child. 

Florida Baptist Children’s Homes (FBCH) touches the hearts of both mothers and fathers of unborn children and informs them of pro-life choices. Their Sanctity of Human Life Program combines post-abortion ministries with adoption education through Pregnancy Care Centers across Florida. The Program also promotes sexual purity and positive choices for young women facing unplanned pregnancies.

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Florida is the third largest abortion provider in the nation, according to Mary Lou Hendry, Director of Sanctity of Human Life with FBCH, and 208 children are aborted in the state every day.

Hendry’s passion is to give young moms an alternative to abortion. The Sanctity of Human Life program offers free pregnancy tests and abstinence education as well as referrals for prenatal care and sometimes free ultrasounds.   

AWARENESS IS KEY

“The goal is to help the mother make a life-affirming decision to either parent their child or place it in an adoptive Christian family,” Hendry said. For moms-to-be to make life-affirming decisions, they must be aware of their choices. Many teen moms choose abortion because of fear, confusion or simply being uninformed. 

An FBCH Pregnancy Resource Center brochure shares the story of Rachael, an unwed pregnant 17-year-old mom-to-be, who decided to abort her unborn child. Before she did, however, a friend took her to a Pregnancy Resource/Care Center where she received information, support, Biblical counseling, and hope. Because of relationships made and knowledge gained while she was there, Rachael chose to have her baby girl. She then placed her in an adoptive home. Rachael also accepted Jesus Christ as her personal Savior.

Hendry’s organization strives to change hearts like Rachael’s through Biblical counseling. “Central to all of our training is focusing on the hearts of the young women in need by being intentional with the purpose of sharing the love and truth of Jesus with them as we counsel them about the life of their unborn child,” Hendry said. 

Fathers’ hearts need to be reached as well. Along with sharing God’s love for His creation and His command to care for each other, Pregnancy Resource Centers reach both women and men in need by promoting marriage and especially fatherhood as God’s plan for rearing children in a God-honoring way.  

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Recently, Hendry helped a man who came to talk with her. “He told someone to have an abortion, and he wanted to talk about it. He said, ‘I need help,’” she shared.

OPPORTUNITIES FOR CHURCH MEMBERS

Members of churches benefit by being made aware of what the Sanctity of Human Life program does. “The biggest need is prayer,” Hendry said, “and for churches to be aware of opportunities to serve in PRCs.”

There are many opportunities for churches to be connected with a Pregnancy Resource Centers. Churches can open new centers. Another option is for churches to start baby boutiques where clients earn points allowing them to shop in church-run stores for clothing, blankets and supplies for themselves and their babies. Volunteers and donations are always needed as well. 

Another way is by observing Sanctity of Human Life Sunday on Jan. 19. On that day, churches around Florida and the United States will reflect on the January, 1973 Roe vs. Wade decision and subsequent Supreme Court rulings which legalized abortion through all nine months of pregnancy. 

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