On Tuesday night, Ohio voters approved an amendment to the state constitution that establishes a right to abortion. As pro-life and pro-woman advocates, we’re deeply grieved by the implications of this amendment. We encourage you to read the ballot and full text of the amendment entitled “The Right to Reproductive Freedom with Protections for Health and Safety.” Ohio Issue 1 ballot & full text of amendment.
The full text of the amendment is below with our concerns noted.
Upon approval, physicians now have the authority to determine the viability of a preborn child, as well as the authority to determine if an abortion is necessary to protect the pregnant woman’s life or health, including mental and emotional health, at any stage of pregnancy. This means the life of a preborn child is in the hands of a medical professional’s subjective judgment. It is also worth mentioning that for-profit abortion providers like Planned Parenthood benefit from abortion access, unlike Pregnancy Centers like My Life Clinic that are entirely non-profit. The open-ended implications of this allowance have raised appropriate alarm, with advocates from both sides of the issue voicing concern.
What this means for Missouri
Missouri lobbyist, Sam Lee, communicated at this week’s Alliance for Life conference in Kansas City that we, as pro-life advocates, should be aware of the likelihood that Missouri’s legislature is considering following suit. If abortion access is reinstated in Missouri, this could threaten funding for Alternatives to Abortion, a Missouri program that offers services to encourage women to choose life for their baby, as well as the 70% Missouri Pregnancy Resource Center Tax Credit program. As we just saw in Ohio, things can change quickly and Missouri is not immune.
Our calling to you
In today’s culture, we feel it’s vitally important to discuss the broader implications that news like this has for women and children in our state. Our Life Network team will provide updates as much as we can, and we encourage you to take ownership in staying current on the abortion conversation.
In light of this setback, we continue to have hope. The Dobbs decision has made a difference: studies show there were 5,000 less abortions in the two months following the overturn of Roe v Wade. We’re not alone in our face-to-face work with women facing unplanned pregnancies. My Life Clinic is working alongside many pregnancy resource centers in Missouri that are meeting women where they are, loving them well, and answering practical needs.
Moments like this call us to prayer. We deeply desire for abortion to become unthinkable and we know that this is only possible if hearts are changed. We’re encouraged by The Gospel Coalition’s response to Tuesday’s news here. “We can fight the pro-life fight joyfully in the power of the Spirit, knowing one day the One who conquered death will return to make all things new.”
On June 24th, 2022, the United States Supreme Court overturned the 49 year-old law upholding the federal right to an abortion. While many of us did not expect to see this change within our lifetimes, we rejoice that we as a country are one step closer to making abortion unthinkable. With the right to an abortion returning to each state’s government to decide, there are still many states that have and will continue to keep abortion centers open and operating. So, as people who value the dignity of the unborn and believe in a God who created all life with purpose, how do we respond?
First and foremost, we respond with compassion and empathy. We remember that no matter how politicized the topic of life becomes, these are real women who are in distress and in fear. Women who are loved personally by Christ, no matter their life decision. We at My Life Clinic fight to remind every client that comes through our doors that they too, matter. Their story is important and their circumstances are valid. We encourage them to know they are worthy, seen and loved by their creator. We hope that they understand that because they are so deeply loved by Jesus, they too can love their unborn child.
We then respond with grace. Grace for those who have previously had abortions and for those traveling across state lines to still obtain an abortion. We see Jesus respond to sin with grace in John 8, with the adulterous woman. We, in kind, respond the same. We ask the Holy Spirit to transform their hearts and turn to Him. Then we pray for healing for their hearts, as we know the life decision holds plenty of weight.
Lastly, we respond with conviction, holding firm to the truth that Psalm 139:13-16 reminds us:
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
Despite a culture that pushes so harshly against our fight for life, we must remember that Jesus tasks us with taking care of the vulnerable (Ps 72:12, James 1:27, Isaiah 1:17). If we believe that God creates life with purpose and for His own desire, then who are we to choose to end that life? Let us fight the good fight, with compassion, empathy, grace and truth!
In response to a world post Roe v Wade, we challenge you to pray about how you are to interact with this cause. Do you have a loving conversation with a friend that needs to hear the truth? Do you connect with a single mom that needs a little extra help? Do you volunteer at a Pregnancy Resource Center? Do you give financially? We pray that God guides your steps however He may see fit. All for kingdom purposes!
What we do day in and day out always seems to be subject to change. New situations that we have to learn to navigate keep coming, but what always remains true is Jesus’ promise to show up with us! We as a staff pray every morning that the women that need our services would find our doors and that Christ would speak love through our words.
Would you pray this over us too?
To best get to know our ministry let me walk you through a sample scenario of a client’s process. The name and situation is fictional to protect anonymity.
Zoe and her boyfriend, Zack, called to make an appointment with MLC, as they were unsure if her new symptoms were indicative of a new pregnancy. With both Zoe and Zack working full-time jobs, they both felt overwhelmed and anxious about the possibility of bringing a new life into the mix.
Upon their arrival to the clinic, they were met by our Office Manager who gave them intake paperwork to fill out. Once they finished, our Nurse came to grab Zoe for a medical intake. Zack was instructed to wait in the waiting room to provide Zoe space to speak freely with our staff about her situation. In the counseling room, our nurse and Zoe walked through her concerns, medical history and plans for this pregnancy. Our nurse then requested Zoe leave a urine sample to run a pregnancy test on, before returning to present the results.
In the meantime, our Client Specialist meets with Zoe to complete a psychosocial assessment, gain an understanding for her current situation and provide her space to discuss her thoughts and feelings. Our client specialist listens to Zoe’s fears of not being a good enough mom and the changes she will have to make. The Client Specialist talks through some of the community resources we know to be available and gives her information on how to get signed up. They discuss insurance and the steps for Medicaid, helping break down the barriers that Zoe had in her mind regarding keeping her baby.
Once everyone has been seen, Zack rejoins Zoe for the results of her pregnancy test. The nurse reviews the positive pregnancy test, precautions for miscarriage and ectopic symptoms and instructions on moving forward. Because Zoe’s last period was over 6 weeks ago, they move to the ultrasound room to bring the baby to the screen.
Our Sonographer locates the pregnancy, ruling the possibility of an ectopic pregnancy off the table. She measures the heart rate, confirming viability. Then she measures the baby to determine how far along the pregnancy is. Zoe and Zack are then sent with a few pictures of their growing child (this is the best part!!) and a medical referral sheet of multiple OBGYN’s in town.
Before heading out, Zoe and Zack stop by the Baby Boutique to learn about our parenting classes as a way to earn “Baby Bucks”, to use in the Boutique. The Boutique is stocked with donated baby items including: clothing, diapers, wipes, formula, blankets, strollers, maternity clothing, etc. The couple heads out the door feeling further equipped with knowledge about her pregnancy, next steps to take and knowing they are welcome back anytime.
While this scenario changes with each client’s unique situation, our response is always the same. To provide them with free pregnancy testing, STI testing, ultrasounds, counseling, parenting classes and more. My Life Clinic exists to meet women right where they are at, and walk with them through an unexpected pregnancy. It is because of your support to Life Network that we have a physical space to meet these women and the equipment to do so. Thank you!
We hope you are encouraged by the story you just read. Jesus is changing lives here every day!
Hi friends! Welcome to Life Network of Central Missouri’s blog :)
Our staff is excited to get this space launched, in an effort to bridge the gap between our donors and our clinic doors. You are each so valuable to our ministry efforts, as having a backing of like-minded individuals provides us the ability to meet the needs of these women in unplanned pregnancies. From all of us to you, thank you!
In this blog, we hope to do a few things to involve you more in our ministry. First, we want to introduce you to our clinic and our staff, acquainting yourself online to feel more a part of our group. We want to help you understand our services and what we can do to help women in our community, so that you may direct people our way. Finally, we want to answer questions you may have about the pro-life movement. We will discuss new developments going on policy wise, in the state and on a federal level, and how that impacts what we are doing.
We will always speak from a Christian standpoint, because we believe Christ calls us and empowers us to do the work we are doing here at Life Network. Although, we respect all backgrounds and religious beliefs, knowing that there are many causes that justify the pro-life stance, not just religion. We hope to better inform those who choose to read, as there are so many voices speaking, that ultimately cause more confusion than clarity. As staff posting these blogs, we speak from our daily experiences with real clients, and the knowledge we gain from sources we will cite when referencing. We want to contribute to the truth!
It is our hope that this blog will be well received, remembering that we are all learning and growing. We hope that each post encourages you, inspires you forward and makes you feel a part of our ministry. We are all a part of the Body of Christ and a part of this mission as humans! By God’s grace, we will continue to hold firm to the belief that all life is valuable and worth defending.
We want to try to answer any questions you may have! If a question comes up as you are reading or outside of this blog, please email these to firstname.lastname@example.org