After the Abortion article posts

LifeDate Winter 2019

Date: December 11, 2019

Category: After the Abortion

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From the Executive Director
“Did God Really Say … ?” by Pastor Michael Salemink

Abortion/Post Abortion/Alternatives
Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread by Rev. Justin A. Herman
Come, Spirit of Truth by Lynette Auch

Family Living
Did God Really Say Yes to Sex? by Pastor Michael Salemink
Tips for Instilling Life Values in Children by Stephenie Hovland

Lutherans For Life – Bethesda Lutheran Communities
Did God Really Say Indispensable? by Mona Fuerstenau

Worldview and Culture
“Lord, to Whom Shall We Go?” by Virginia Flo

Lutherans For Life Resources

Life Thoughts in the Church Year

World News

Spotlight on Lutherans For Life
Share the Life Message All Through the Year! / Word of Hope
More than Historians by Michelle Bauman
Attention All Youth: It’s Time to Sign up for Y4Life in Washington, D.C.!
A New Y4Life Team
“Exactly What God Would Want Us to Do” by Michelle Bauman
Our Frontlines Continue to Grow by Deaconess Rachel Geraci
2020 March for Life/Estate Planning/Real Estate for Life/LFL on Social Media
LAMBs – Lutherans Assembling Mercy Blankets
2020 LFL Regional Conferences

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“Did God Really Say … ?”

By Michael W. Salemink

Date: December 9, 2019

Category: After the Abortion

It is a serpent’s nature to twist and hide. The devil even does it with the Word of the Lord.

And he succeeds in deceiving, not because of his wealth of wisdom but rather our lack of listening. Satan spits a mist of expert assertions and popular opinions; whips up the dust of social conditions and emotional circumstances; and makes multitudes believe life issues are “complicated,” “political,” and “personal.”

Thanks be to God that wherever the father of lies raises suspicions, the Son of God puts His pierced foot down with promises that lay the foundation upon which we may stand with confidence and fall with comfort.

  • Did God really say His grace in creating, redeeming, and calling makes every human life His precious treasure forever? Yes!

  • Did God really say we need abortion, assisted suicide, and embryo experiments to alleviate our afflictions? No!

  • Did God really say surprise pregnancies bring blessings and terminal diagnoses have righteous purpose? Yes!

  • Did God really say the Gospel of Jesus Christ works joy and hope except amid our sins and sufferings? No!

  • Did God really say His truth and love prevail for unborn and elderly lives as well as well as abortion advocates and euthanasia enthusiasts? Yes!

  • Did God really say speaking His truth and showing His love heal all hearts but the ones that participate in violence against life? No!

  • Did God really say we may receive as a gift and privilege every member of the human race that achieves a certain age, appearance, or ability? No!

  • Did God really say these restrictions and reassurances apply even in political controversies and personal choices? Yes!

“Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life” (John 6:68b).

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The Message We Share

By Michael W. Salemink

Date: December 5, 2019

Category: After the Abortion

Imagine a nineteen-year-old girl. She holds in her hands a positive pregnancy test. College, career, finances, freedom, boyfriend are racing through her brain. They’re all falling through her fingers. This will ruin her mother’s reputation. Dad’s not going to stand for it. She feels afraid, ashamed, alone. She has to fix this. She can make it go away. No one needs to know. Celebrities and educators told her so.

Could we help her?

Imagine a thirty-nine-year-old guy. The sanctity of life makes sense to him. Sometimes he wishes it didn’t. He hears the way journalists ridicule “anti-abortion fanatics.” He watches internet commenters harass “conservative extremists.” Office conversations cause him stress. Social gatherings leave him isolated. He feels the need to speak for the least of these. He just can’t seem to put his concerns into words.

Couldn’t we help him?

Imagine a fifty-nine-year-old man. He’s carrying a secret grief. He suffers a silent guilt. Nothing lets him forget how he supported a girlfriend’s abortion. What kind of demonic monster takes part in putting his own child to death? Several decades and many bottles of alcohol later he despises his life. He believes he should be the one who’s dead.

Would you be of service to him?

Imagine an eighty-nine-year-old lady. Her prison consists of hearing aids, canes, medications, aches and pains. She needs help dressing and bathing herself. She can’t even eat or breathe on her own. It takes time and attention from the lives of others. It costs someone else’s money and energy. Doctor says only nine months, maybe eighteen, left anyway. She wonders whether she would be better off dead than a burden.

How would you be of service to her?

Lutherans For Life is reaching them with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Lutherans For Life is touching them with the promises of God’s grace. We need your help to keep changing their hearts. We need your partnership to keep saving their lives.

Will you give a special financial gift? Please send your donation today! It’s not only a gift to us. It’s an offering to them—and an offering to the Lord.

Imagine this nineteen-year-old girl hearing her life matters even in surprise pregnancy.

Almighty God has created, redeemed, and called her as special to Him. He has made her little one the same kind of gift, privilege, and precious treasure forever. His people will embrace and assist her. They’re surrounding her with His joy and sustaining her with His hope.

Imagine our thirty-nine-year-old guy learning truth and love belong together.

God’s Word works even when it hurts. He won’t allow anyone to suffer alone. You can disagree without disrespect, and sometimes cherishing neighbors means questioning their statements. A nationwide network unites with you to find words for warning and winning over.

Just imagine the fifty-nine-year-old man receiving forgiveness.

He sees what a beloved son he’s become, entirely and eternally, as much as the life that was lost. He is beholding a Savior Who has made up for all we make wrong. He’s being held by a Father Who still wants him and stays with him. The Lord God releases him from punishment and even repurposes his mistakes for displaying His grace.

This Christmas, imagine your eighty-nine-year-old lady feeling worth and purpose.

Her body, though broken, serves as a temple of the Holy Spirit. God reveals His mercy and might as He keeps her amidst infirmities. No one’s age, appearance, or ability can impair or improve His care. Her pains are connecting people to each other, and her suffering bestows the honor of being needed.

Now imagine this is your sister. Imagine it’s your own daughter. Imagine somebody you know, one you love. Imagine it’s your dad, your grandpa. It could be your brother, your son, your granddaughter. It’s a teenager or a twenty-something in your congregation. This is your aging neighbor.

And you don’t even have to imagine. It’s happening right now, in our communities and across the country. This is what we do. This is why we do it.

Lutherans For Life is proclaiming this message. We are putting this ministry into practice. We’re speaking this truth in hundreds of print and digital resources. We’re showing this love with dozens of programs and in-person presentations. Life Sunday resources, LifeDate, Life Teams, Life Chapters, Y4Life, Word of Hope, and Owen’s Mission—just to name a few.

We’ve done it for forty years, because of you and so many others too. Can we continue to count on you? Why not give in memory of a loved one? Why not become a monthly sponsor, or leave a legacy by including us in your will? Why not encourage your congregation to designate funds for us, and why not a couple acquaintances as well?

As long as you keep making it possible, we’ll keep making a difference—an immediate and eternal difference!

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LifeDate Fall 2019

Date: August 29, 2019

Category: After the Abortion

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From the Executive Director
Adoption – God’s “WANTED!” Sign by Pastor Michael Salemink

Lutherans For Life – Bethesda Lutheran Communities
God’s Word for Whatever – Bethesda Lutheran Communities – Lutherans For Life by Sandra Brese Rice

Abortion/Post Abortion/Alternatives
Is It Really a Woman’s Choice? by Jean Amundson
Word of Hope
Don’t Forget the Men! by Jean Amundson

Family Living
Adoption: Finding a Family for a Child
Life Quotes on Adoption
The DNA of Adoption by Pastor Michael Salemink
Meant to Be by Lynette Auch

Lutherans For Life Resources

Life Thoughts in the Church Year

World News

Spotlight on Lutherans For Life
Share the Life Message All Through the Year! / Word of Hope
Hope-Filled Promises by Michelle Bauman
The First Two Months by Michelle Bauman
Y4Life at FLY and NYG
We Were Busy This Summer! by Pastor Michael Salemink
2020 March for Life/Estate Planning/Real Estate for Life/LFL on Social Media
LAMBs – Lutherans Assembling Mercy Blankets
2019 LFL Regional Conferences

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Word of Hope (LifeDate Fall 2019)

Date: August 29, 2019

Category: After the Abortion

Photo: Chrissie Gillett, with Holleigh Hiller, at the 2019 LWML Convention in Mobile, Alabama.

As a ministry of Lutherans For Life (LFL), Word of Hope is a unique 24/7 national hotline devoted to intervening on behalf of life issues and imparting the value of all human life as divinely created and redeemed by Jesus Christ. Hotline callers are primarily men or women who have suffered for weeks, months, or years after participating in an abortion decision. Many of the hurting people describe overwhelming guilt, depression, anxiety, nightmares, intrusive thoughts, unwanted memories, or other symptoms of post-abortion syndrome. At Word of Hope, we respond to suffering with love, mercy, and confidential support, guiding each person with the Word toward reconciliation with God by the gift of faith in Christ alone.

At the peak of the ministry under founder Grace Kern, MSW, as many as 300 people connected with Word of Hope through the hotline or email each month. Over time, the ministry’s effectiveness was impacted by the need for Grace to singlehandedly operate the hotline, write literature, speak publicly, and procure funding. Grace’s decision to retire meant some tasks needed to be deferred and others postponed as the pursuit for a new director commenced. In April 2017, the search concluded when Deaconess Chrissie Gillet, PsyD, accepted the invitation to join the LFL team as the new Word of Hope Director.

The transition presented an opportunity to reflect on past successes and a vision for the future. Word of Hope aspires to be a national resource that offers supportive referrals and a Christocentric experience, with the hope that all people will be liberated from the overwhelming guilt associated with life-related issues, such as the suffering connected to abortion. To proceed in harmony with the vision, the focus of our efforts must address the need for knowledgeable staff, an online presence, updated technology, proper referral resources, revised publications, and collaboration with other agencies.

Due to the generosity of grants from organizations and donations given by additional dedicated supporters, we accomplished many goals to publicize the hotline. Word of Hope increased staff hours, acquired advanced software technology, revised media, exhibited at several conferences, and developed an informational packet that is being distributed nationally. Our ability to “have mercy on those who doubt [and] save others by snatching them out of the fire” (Jude 1:22-23a) is critically dependent on the compassion from people and organizations who also share in the true value of life. We are eager to partner with you—For Life!

www.lutheransforlife.org/about/word-of-hope

word-of-hope.org

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Is It Really a Woman’s Choice?

By Jean Amundson

Date: August 29, 2019

Category: After the Abortion

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart.” (Jeremiah 1:5a NIV)

Is abortion really a woman’s choice? Through the media, we hear and read, “My body, my choice.” Are you aware that many women, no matter the age, are unwillingly submitting to abortions? Well-meaning—and sometimes non well-meaning—parents, boyfriends, girlfriends, realtives, and others take the woman to the abortion facility against her will.

Following are a few examples which have been shared with me over the years:

“My father was an elder in our church, and when he learned I was pregnant out of wedlock, he was furious. He, along with my mother, took me to the abortion facility. After so many years, I am still angry with them and God. They aborted their grandchild, and I was deeply hurt.” (Through a post-abortion class, this lady was able to forgive her parents. Her faith in Jesus and God was restored.)

“When I was pregnant with our third child, the doctor told my husband and me that we should abort the child as I would probably have an emotional breakdown. The doctor located an abortionist in another state.” (After approximately 30 years, the woman learned to forgive the doctor and her husband. She is now a strong advocate For Life.)

“My girlfriend took me to the abortion facility. She said it was for my good.” (This lady also found forgiveness in a post-abortion class. She went on to lead post-abortion classes.)

“Against her will, and without my wife’s or my knowledge/consent, our 16-year-old daughter was taken to an abortion clinic by a high school counselor. She was distraught and quite upset when she came home following the abortion and informed us what had happened. We would never have given our consent. The three of us were totally distraught and have not forgiven the school or the individual who took our daughter to the abortion facility, against her will.” (I am still praying the three of them will learn to forgive the counselor who took their daughter for the abortion.)

There are many stories similar to the ones above which abortion supporters do not want to be shared. From my perspective, the abortion activists who speak out the most often and the loudest are the ones who have deep emotional scars from past abortions. I believe most of these individuals have either never had a relationship with Christ Jesus or “life” has turned them away from Jesus. These individuals were also created in God’s image. It says in John 20:23a (NIV) that, “If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven …”

As Christian life-affirming individuals, we should be praying for God to send the Holy Spirit upon them so they may feel God’s true forgiveness.

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Don’t Forget the Men!

By Jean Amundson

Date: August 29, 2019

Category: After the Abortion

“Don’t forget the men!” This is a phrase heard frequently from post-abortive men. Currently, state and national abortion laws are changing rapidly. We hear and read, “My body, my choice.” It appears to be all about the women. Women are told, “You will have the right to choose if you will carry or abort your child.”

In frequent instances, the birth father has not been made aware that his wife or girlfriend is pregnant or that a family member of the birth mother, or the birth mother, has chosen to abort the birth father’s child.

In many situations, when the birth father is made aware of the abortion, he is devastated. He wonders why he was not made aware of the pregnancy and why the birth mom decided to abort the pregnancy.

After participating on a panel at a Lutherans For Life conference a few years ago, a man came up to me and said, “Don’t forget the men.” He shared that his girlfriend had an abortion and didn’t tell him about it until quite a while afterward. He was crushed. He inquired if there were post-abortion recovery groups for men. At an LFL Board of Directors’ meeting shortly before this conference, a guest speaker had told us how his life had been affected by abortion. He indicated that he and some other post-abortive men in the St. Louis area had written a curriculum for men whose lives had been impacted by abortion, and they were offering classes for men with similar experiences.We were able to share this information with the man. I have thought about him often over the years and continue to keep him in my prayers.

Another time a man cried in my arms—it was quite emotional. He said several years ago he had a girlfriend who was pregnant with his child, and she decided to have an abortion. She had not told him she was pregnant and planned to terminate the pregnancy. She went to the abortion facility by herself as she thought abortion was a simple, safe procedure. Well, something went wrong, and she needed to be sent immediately to a hospital. She had given this man’s name as the emergency contact, never dreaming he would need to be called. He was shocked when he received the phone call. He did go immediately and took her to the hospital. She survived and shortly afterward the man terminated the relationship. (As a side note, he is now a Lutheran pastor.)

A post-abortive grandfather shared that when his daughter was a teenager, she became pregnant. His wife and daughter chose to abort the baby over his objection. He is still grieving for the loss of the grandchild he never knew. He and his wife came close to divorcing, but their faith has kept them together.

How did Joseph handle Mary’s pregnancy when he first learned she was expecting a baby that was not his child? Matthew 1:19-21(NIV) states: “Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law … he had in mind to divorce her quietly. But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.’”

Don’t forget the men! God doesn’t and neither should we!

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LifeDate Summer/June 2019

Date: June 17, 2019

Category: After the Abortion

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Guest Commentary
Leap for Joy by Rev. Troy Tysdal

Abortion/Post Abortion/Alternatives
Ten Life-Affirming Science Facts by Pastor Michael Salemink
Will It Hurt? Pain Perception in the Developing Human by Dr. Sheila Page

End of Life
Pressuring Doctors & Nurses to Support Assisted Suicide & Euthanasia by Virginia Flo

Family Living
Reach Out and Touch Someone by Lynette Auch
Moms Embody Grace by Pastor Michael Salemink

Lutherans For Life Resources

Life Thoughts in the Church Year

Spotlight on Lutherans For Life
Share the Life Message All through the Year! / Word of Hope
Being a Bulldog for Life by Joanna Sherrill
Numbers by Pastor Michael Salemink
2020 March for Life/Estate Planning/Real Estate for Life/LFL on Social Media
LAMBs – Lutherans Assembling Mercy Blankets
2019 LFL Regional Conferences

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LifeDate Spring/Summer 2019

Date: February 28, 2019

Category: After the Abortion

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From the Executive Director
10 Blessings of Large Families by Pastor Michael Salemink

Lutherans For Life – Bethesda Lutheran Communities
Wonderfully Made – Bethesda Lutheran Communities – Lutherans For Life
The Dream and Story of Parenting by Mona Fuerstenau

Abortion/Post Abortion/Alternatives
The Real Hippocratic Oath by Donna J. Harrison, M.D.

Family Living
Proliferate by Pastor Michael Salemink
Caregiving = Burden-Bearing by Marie K. MacPherson
Looking for the Good by Diane E. Schroeder
God’s Children by Lynette Auch

Lutherans For Life Resources

Life Thoughts in the Church Year

World News

Spotlight on Lutherans For Life
New York State’s Abortion Law by Pastor Michael Salemink
Together Beat Our Hearts
A Better Way by Pastor Scott Licht
Lutherans For Life at the 2019 March for Life
Scenes from the 2019 March for Life
LAMBs – Lutherans Assembling Mercy Blankets
2019 LFL Regional Conferences

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New York State’s Abortion Law

By Michael W. Salemink

Date: January 25, 2019

Category: After the Abortion

Today we grieve with the citizens and residents of New York. On Tuesday, January 22nd, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the Reproductive Health Act into law.

The state has tolerated abortion up to 24-weeks gestation since before Roe v. Wade. This new policy decriminalizes killing a child even up until birth if the little one has a condition a doctor thinks will cause death soon after being born. It calls it OK to abort a baby throughout pregnancy if the doctor believes carrying to term threatens the mother’s life or health. Other jurisdictions have stretched such “mother’s health” provisions to include simply her comfort or preference. (Caesarean section surgeries at 24 weeks or later are quicker and safer for both mother and child than any abortion. Premature infants as young as 22 weeks regularly survive without complications, and thousands of mothers undergo successful C-sections every day.) The regulation deletes a previous law that required medical care for any child born alive after a failed abortion—and it invites facility staff who are not doctors to carry out abortions.

New York’s senate applauded. The governor directed turning the spire of One World Trade Center pink to “celebrate.” Our country’s fourth-most populated state already has an abortion rate almost twice (23.1 per 1,000 women) the national average (11.8 per 1,000). In the largest U.S. city, New York City, 78% of abortions involve black Americans, and more black babies are aborted than born there. Where our nation’s most treasured landmark announces “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,” the leaders and laws have abandoned women and children. The human community ought to protect and support them, especially because bringing forth the great gifts of life and future leaves them vulnerable. Instead, a sex-obsessed culture has sentenced them to desertion and death.

Nevertheless, our courage does not wane. Our compassion only swells. The Gospel of Jesus Christ proclaims that our Almighty Maker creates, redeems, and calls every member of the human race to be His precious treasure forever. This Heavenly Father gives our whole species its sanctity and significance, and no one’s age, appearance, experience, ability, or history can improve or impair it. We celebrate our Savior’s crucifixion to forgive sins and His resurrection to defeat death. And we commit ourselves to receive especially the least of these as special privileges.

Dear neighbors of New York, we see you. However afraid or alone you feel, the people of Lutherans For Life hear your cries and pleas. No matter how ashamed you are, the Christian Church that is the Lord’s own body loves you. You don’t have to surrender to the devil’s deception that death be used as a solution to difficulties.

We are going to continue to marshal all the resources within our reach to preserve and embrace you from the womb until the tomb. We vow to come alongside you, carry your crosses, share your sorrows, suffer and labor together. We offer our individual and united voices to advocate for your well-being—not only immediately, but eternally. We open our hearts, our hands, and our homes to share life abundantly with you the way our Lord does. We pledge never to cease or weaken in assuring and enacting for you the joy and hope and purpose that Jesus Christ imparts to each human life. And even should all the laws of this land or any other decree human beings as objects to be used and disposed, He has guaranteed that the faith and fellowship that His truth and love set in motion among us will render them entirely obsolete.

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