Pro-life organizations are often asked by local churches how they can support the cause. Some ways for churches to get involved in pro-life issues are obvious – partnering through prayer, donations, and volunteering. But none of those options allow for in-person support or connection to a woman who is going through an unplanned pregnancy. How can churches reach women-in-need tangibly and become an advocate for life?
Caring Network provides emotional support, spiritual counsel, and practical help to anyone going through an unplanned pregnancy. By offering free services at our six Chicagoland pregnancy centers, we come alongside women in a time of need. We couldn’t fulfill the important mission of serving and saving lives without the involvement of the local Church. Learn more about how your church can partner with us in meeting both practical, relational, and spiritual needs of the women we serve.
What is an Advocate for Life?
Identifying the Need for Advocacy
Advocates are people in the local church who have a passion for pro-life ministry. They identify the need to compassionately care for women who are experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. And the need is great.
In a survey completed by Care Net National in 2015, nearly 4 in 10 women who had an abortion were attending church at that time. But only 7% of them discussed their decision to have an abortion with someone at their church. 64% believed that church members would gossip about their situation rather than help her understand her options.
Historically, the church has provided help during times of great need. Since the beginning, the church has been on the frontline of natural disasters, epidemics, poverty, and many other catastrophes. Today, one of the needs our society faces is to eliminate the suffering from, and desire for, abortion. How can the church again lead the charge?
Serving Pregnant Women with Compassion
The Care Net study identified a strong area of growth for churches – creating a safe place for women to share about an unplanned pregnancy. The concern women have that they’ll be judged or shamed can prevent them from asking for help in the place where it can most be provided. The church should be a beacon of hope to those who are facing an unplanned pregnancy. It’s a place where women can receive the truth in love and find a community to come alongside them during a pregnancy decision.
How to be an Advocate for Life
Some practical ways church members can become an advocate for life are as follows:
- Seek to make the church aware of the help that is available to women in an unplanned pregnancy. Become aware of community programs, pregnancy resource centers, single mom groups, and other resources in your area.
- Help the church and your local pregnancy resource center work together to meet real needs, disciple new believers, or promote services through outreach channels.
- Find ways to make the church aware of the help that is available to women who have had an abortion. There are very likely women in every church who struggle with the emotional pain and anguish resulting from a prior abortion. It’s important they know God loves them and there is help in post-abortion support programs. Caring Network offers Restore After Abortion, a bible-based program that offers compassionate support for women or men who struggle with prior abortion decisions. Your local pregnancy resource center may offer a similar program.
- If your church doesn’t already have a pro-life group established, start one. Your local pregnancy resource center can help with volunteer activities and ways to get new members involved.
- Identify and refer women who may be in need of pregnancy decision services to your local pregnancy resource center.
- Facilitate meeting specific needs of women in an unplanned pregnancy or those who have decided to choose life as they arise. Many of these women could use the moral support of a church women’s group. Or get to know local community organizations that can help furnish her with material goods like diapers and clothing for her baby.
Become a Chicagoland Advocate for Life
Caring Network has been advocating for life for the past 40 years. We meet women with compassion and love, as we journey with them through their unplanned pregnancy. The role of the church is vital to the work we do in empowering women to choose life. With hundreds of local church partners at our side, we can continue to reach more women and save more lives. To learn more about how to become an advocate for life, reach out to us today!