A new dad walked into our center last week. His daughter was born a little early, and he needed a car seat. The baby’s mother had been attending classes and saving up points to get a new one, but since the baby came early, she didn’t quite have enough.
Just as Rosemary, our Pregnancy Center Coordinator, was about to give dad the car seat despite a credit shortage, another client stepped in. She had been talking with Rosemary when the dad walked in and overheard the story. “Just use my points,” she offered.
When Rosemary told her she would just use enough to cover the shortage, the client insisted, “Do it all on my account.”
After the new father thanked her and left to take the car seat back to the hospital, the client reminded Rosemary that another client had done the same thing for her a year ago when she needed a high-chair, and she had never forgotten it. Though she hadn’t met this new mother, she wanted to pay the kindness forward.
The car seat cost was 40 points, which equates to four one hour classes. Since most moms come to one class per week, this was a month’s worth of points the client had been saving up. Our point system is not a strict one, but it gives parents an incentive to come receive instruction and support while earning the things they need for their family. The client’s gift required a sacrifice.
This might not be the type of story you expect to hear from a Pregnancy Resource Center, but our classes are about so much more than healthy pregnancies and caring for a newborn. New moms and dads are taking part in community, building friendships, looking beyond their difficult circumstances to support one another.
This Mother’s Day, we are celebrating the selflessness that moms display, not only for their children, but also for each other!
The community we create at Grace House Pregnancy Center is possible only because of the faithful support of many churches, businesses, and individuals. Will you become a monthly partner and ensure our free services continue changing lives? Join us in promoting hope and life!
“The worst thing was that when I had the chance to do something, I just stood there.”
Abby Johnson’s life completely changed in 2009 when she assisted with an ultrasound-guided abortion at the Planned Parenthood facility where she worked. Horrified by what she saw, she stepped down from her position and devoted her future to pro-life advocacy.
We had the opportunity to participate in a live Q&A with the former abortion clinic director and hear her incredible story of redemption at our Gather event September 30.
“We need to talk now about what we can do to be part of the solution,” Abby said. “It’s easy to get stuck in your past because that’s where the enemy wants you to live. But God wants your future.”
Abby now travels the world sharing her story with millions. She has also founded a nonprofit that assists abortion clinic staff who are seeking a life change.
“I realized that there was nothing I could do to make up for what I had done,” she said in response to one guest’s question. “But I also realized that because of the scandalous mercy of Jesus Christ, I didn’t have to.”
Our staff also took the opportunity to share a behind-the-scenes look at Grace House and discuss how the ministry has affected them personally.
“The stories we hear are often deep, difficult, and heart-wrenching,” shared Rosemary Boswell, our Grace House Pregnancy Center Coordinator. “These new moms and dads have experienced things I couldn’t even fathom. They come to us for help, but they are braver and stronger than they realize. I am fully aware that I may be one of the only examples of Christ’s love they experience in their day. I also have the privilege of visiting our new moms in the hospital, and I get to hold their newborn babies, often just a few hours old. I have held 19 newborn babies this year! I thought I would come to Grace House and be a part of changing lives, but it has been a life-changer for me.”
Because of the generosity of our amazing community, over $75,000 was raised to continue the life-affirming work of Grace House Ministries!
Many thanks to all who made the evening a success and for giving us the opportunity to share with you what God is doing through this ministry because of partnerships like yours.
Grace House Ministries provides free, life-affirming services to the community through three branches: Options Clinic offers free pregnancy testing and pregnancy verification under the medical direction of Dr. Lindsay McBride; Grace House Pregnancy Center offers free parenting classes where clients can earn credit to spend on clothes and formula; Pure Truth in-school training program sends volunteers into local schools to teach an abstinence-based curriculum and awards a scholarship every spring to a deserving high school senior.
Grace House Ministries is committed to serving fathers with the same standard of compassion that we extend to mothers and children. It is our desire that he be equipped with the support and education he needs to have a positive impact on his growing family.
I recently found myself preparing to meet with a young man who had made an appointment for his girlfriend, *Lisa. *Tim was one of the dozens of young men we have met with since opening our new clinic facility in February of this year. Lisa was speaking with one of our volunteer advocates, but I could tell he needed someone to talk to as well.
As I sat down with him, I felt small compared to the seriousness of the matter to be discussed. Not only was the life of their unborn child at stake, but, no matter their decision, Tim and Lisa’s lives would be changed forever. Would he give my words any credibility? What did he most need to hear?
After only a few moments, I could tell Tim was overwhelmed by the decision in front of him. He was worried that his past conversations with Lisa might make her feel pressured into having an abortion, since she was considering parenting. He wanted to avoid putting any pressure on her. In fact, he shared his concern over the short-term and long-term negative impacts abortion might have on her, even if it was her decision. He told me the story of how a close relative had described her abortion experience to them as something she would never want to go through again.
But despite these concerns, abortion seemed to him like the only option which would allow them to continue in the direction of their goals.
Through the course of our conversation, I shared information with Tim about their child’s stage of development as well as all the options and resources available to them. As I watched his expression, the words I thought he might be looking for came to me.
“Having a baby will change your lives, but it doesn’t mean you have to give up on your plans for the future,” I told him.
He seemed to be listening intently, but the uncertainty was still plain on his face. Even after seeing their baby’s heart beat rapidly on the sonogram screen, Tim and Lisa seemed conflicted. The gravity of the situation was evident in their expressions. As they left the appointment, they reported being “undecided” about their decision.
A few days and many prayers later, we received word that Tim and Lisa had decided to parent and to participate in parenting classes through Grace House Pregnancy Center. I even had the opportunity to meet with Tim to encourage him as he prepares for his role as a father. He is now excited at the prospect and eager to learn. What a change from the uncertain young man I met in our clinic!
It is impossible to say what direction this story would have taken if Tim and Lisa had not received our services tailored to their circumstance. Tim was a voice in Lisa’s decision, and he was ready to be the support she needed once he had someone supporting him.
Client Services Coordinator of Options Clinic
*Name changed to protect the privacy of our clients.