With the pandemic news roiling through our heads, social unrest in our local communities and political encampments bracing for the November elections I felt like I was losing my focus as to why I became involved in the pro-life mission. Suddenly, I was receiving emails and posts from unknown senders telling me what to think, how to vote, wear a mask/don’t wear a mask, sign an online petition for this or that, attend a march, subscribe to an email chain, send money to an organization, follow an “influencer”, etc. It was difficult to determine exactly which individuals and organizations were valid and where was the value in all this frenzied activity. Why wasn’t I doing more to save innocent lives and who were all these groups with their agendas and suggestions?
This splintering off into various tangents might work for some to keep them active and engaged but it wasn’t working for me. And that is when I decided to go back to what I was doing before. Before Covid, before masks, before protests, before politics, before Twitter – educate myself as how I can best support the pro-life mission.
I’m the kind of newspaper reader who rips out pages and has a pile of things I want to delve into further. And back in May I read a superb story in the Sunday Philadelphia Inquirer about a retirement-age couple who adopted a special needs child. I saved it and put it on my night table – partly as inspiration of the goodness of mankind and partly because the adoption aspect agreed with my pro-life compass. In the course of the article a reference was made to the Philadelphia-based Adoption Center. I was curious about this organization and their involvement with special needs adoptions. Onto the internet I went and saw pictures of several children awaiting adoption and read the Center’s mission statement. While on the site there was a reference to a Parenting Special Needs magazine and I reviewed a few issues. From one Inquirer article, I took about two hours of my day to learn more about what I, as a pro-life supporter, offer as an alternative to abortion – Adoption.
Through quiet focus and education, I now know about a few more resources if the question ever comes up about quality of life issues as a reason to abort. I am by no means an authority but I learned there are people voluntarily willing to take on this herculean task of providing for a child with special needs. I’ve learned there are adoption agencies that work in this particular environment and I’ve read about some of the proud moments parents have celebrated with their special needs children. I consider this enlightenment another aspect of being a pro-life supporter.
Education is not just what we learn at school. It is not just memorization. It is fulfilling our curiosity. It is following up one question with another. It is taking a time-out from doing and instead learning. It is using the often maligned yet powerful internet for good versus contention. And this kind of education will only help me as I engage in the various facets of the pro-life message.
The moral of this story is to follow my instinct as to how I can best support the message of LIFE given what I know about myself. And while it is important to be open to new experiences and communications – and I am grateful for all that I have learned along the way – juggling too many “Action Required” to-do lists from unknown parties may not be the most effective way for me to do what I can to support this message.
Note: Our mission is to offer our prayers and talents to ensure that our children’s lives are respected and valued and that no harm comes to them. In that vein, I’d like to ask each of you reading this blog to keep in your prayers two children (ages 5 and 10) who yesterday in my local area witnessed in their home the shooting death of their mother and grandmother at the hands of their father. It’s heartbreaking to have children, both in and out of the womb, be subjected to such violence. Violence in the womb begets violence in society. Please keep them and those who will now care for them in your prayers. Thank you.