Rocky Mountain Collegian covers CSU Outreach

JFA staff and volunteers are currently in the midst of a 3-day large-format exhibit outreach, creating dialogue with students at Colorado State University (April 24-26). The Rocky Mountain Collegian covered the first day of the outreach event, yesterday. Click here or on the link below to read the full article, which features quotes from JFA Trainer Certification Program Director, Catherine Wurts.

Please note that several mistakes appear in this article.  For clarification, see below.

If you saw one of JFA's large exhibits at CSU this week, click here to share your opinion or get more information about any of our exhibits.

Points of Clarification

1) JFA’s first public exhibition at CSU was not last year, but was in 2002. However, our first time showing the “Stop and Think” exhibit was last year.
2) Zach Lee-Watts is a JFA student volunteer rather than a staff member. He is with the JFA team reaching out at CSU this week. 
3) JFA's updated online Fact Sheet reports 926,200 abortions per year in the U.S. (based on a 2014 Guttmacher Institute study).  The paper version of the Fact Sheet used at the CSU outreach had not yet been updated, as the new numbers were just released in March.  The old paper version stated that 1.06 million abortions take place per year in America (based on a 2011 study by the Guttmacher Institute.)  An updated printable version is also available at the link above.
4) To explain the discrepancy between the Guttmacher Institute statistics we report, and the CDC statistics reported in the article, one needs only look in the “Limitations” portion of the CDC study linked in the article. It states:

"The findings in this report are subject to at least four limitations. First…CDC is unable to obtain the total number of abortions performed in the United States. During the period covered by this report, the total annual number of abortions reported to CDC was consistently approximately 70% of the number recorded by the Guttmacher Institute, which uses numerous active follow-up techniques to increase the completeness of the data obtained through its periodic national census of abortion providers… for 2013 CDC did not obtain any information from California, Maryland, or New Hampshire."

Is this common surgery helpful or harmful? (video included)

Here's an artist's rendering of a six-week embryo (aged from fertilization)*:

Here's a doctor who performed 1,200 abortions describing the abortion procedure used to remove this embryo from the mother's womb**:

Embryos this old or older are killed by this surgery (or another procedure) approximately 300,000 times each year in the US.  The vast majority of the time, the surgery is elective and sought for reasons such as feeling too poor or otherwise not ready to care for a child.  (See JFA's "What Are the Facts" to substantiate these claims from pro-choice or neutral sources.)

Whatever your view on abortion, since this surgery is so common, isn't it worthwhile to ask ourselves: Is this surgery truly helpful or ultimately harmful? 

What do you think? 

In addition to this question, we think these questions are worth considering and discussing:

  1. Can you identify with a woman who feels she needs abortion?  Can you put yourself in her shoes? 
  2. Does knowing the reality of what abortion is make the decision of whether or not to have an abortion harder or easier? 
  3. What do the facts demand of us when we seek to help our friends who have an unplanned pregnancy? 
  4. Is this surgery too common or do you think it's fine if it is common? 
  5. Should abortion continue to be legal at this stage and beyond?  Why or why not?

Note: This is one of a series of posts encouraging dialogue on abortion.  Whatever your perspective on abortion, please note that Justice For All promotes respect for people with differing views and condemns all abortion-related violence.  Please feel free to share this post on social media, and feel free to comment below.

 

* Embryo (2013, Maurice T. Wagner, All Rights Reserved).  See more pictures, video, and facts about the embryo and human development at our "What Is the Unborn?" page.  To see a photograph of the embryo at this stage, see Abort73.

** See video descriptions of the most common abortion procedures at our "What Is Abortion?" page.

5000 Conversations, Part 2: Everyday Life

Part 2: Everyday Life

Dear Friend,

In my February letter ("5000 Conversations in 2017 - Part 1: Outreach Events"), I suggested a few ways you can help us reach our goal of 5000 conversations in 2017, including joining us for a mission trip and connecting us to groups who can join us for outreach. 

There’s another way you can help us create more conversations: start your own conversations in everyday life.  Let’s be honest, though: discussing abortion in everyday life is scary.  We fear harming relationships with the people we love most.  We fear not knowing what to say.  We don’t know how to start the conversation.  Let’s talk about each of these challenges.

Starting Conversations with Friends and Family: Let’s Make Abortion Conversations Common

Instead of talking to strangers as we do at JFA outreach events (difficult enough!), the people with whom any of us are most likely to create conversations in everyday life are friends and family members.  Our cherished relationships are on the line.  Yet, in many cases it’s precisely because of the relationship that each of us can make a great impact on what our friends and family members think during a conversation.  Given the stakes, making a commitment might help.  Would you join me in setting a personal goal to create seven conversations about abortion in everyday life this year?  We can pray together for God’s help, and our team will do what we can to help, too.  If you report back to us, we’ll count your conversations as we assess our progress toward the 5000 target.

We also fear we won’t know what to say.  JFA can help with this.  Every JFA presentation and workshop equips audience members with the ideas and arguments they need to be able to defend the unborn in a winsome, persuasive way.  Our online resources do as well.  In fact, that’s the main reason we devote time to these activities even when we’re not able to follow them up with an outreach event.  We know that many pro-life advocates will never join us for campus outreach but nonetheless can create conversations on their own with friends and family.  We want to prepare them.

In many cases, the most difficult aspect of having conversations with friends and family is not the ideas and arguments—it’s getting the conversations started!  Many of you who support us would be willing to defend unborn children if the opportunity arose.  But the opportunity rarely arises!  Even as a full-time pro-life worker this is true of my experience in everyday life, so I am guessing it’s probably the case for many of you reading this letter, too. 

To meet this need, we’re experimenting this year with ways to turn our exhibits and other resources into conversation starters.  You’ll always find one new conversation starter in our monthly resource bulletin, “Making Abortion Unthinkable with JFA” (click here to see all of our resource bulletins).  In addition to ideas for starting conversations, you’ll also find new ideas each month in two other areas critical for making abortion unthinkable: praying for conversations and preparing for conversations.  Let us know what you think of this resource.

Each of our trainers will be working to personally create conversations during outreach events this year, and we’ll train hundreds of Christians to join us.  The result?  Thousands of conversations.  What we’re missing from this equation is you and thousands of other pro-life advocates who may never join us on campus, but who can nonetheless create conversations in their everyday lives.  Won’t you join us?   

In Christ,

Steve Wagner

Executive Director

Pray for Conversations: Steve Wagner and D.C.

Steve Wagner interacts with a student at a Fresno, California outreach.

Steve Wagner to Serve as Executive Director of Justice For All from Washington D.C.: Beginning in April 2017, Steve Wagner will make a permanent move to the Washington, D.C. area to continue to serve as the Executive Director of Justice For All (JFA) from there.  Steve is excited to begin building relationships to facilitate JFA's outreach work in the region, as well as to continue speaking and participating in JFA's outreach events nationwide.  Pray for Steve and the whole JFA team as they work to make abortion unthinkable by creating conversations and by training pro-life advocates to do the same.  While JFA will now have trainers focusing locally in four metro areas (Wichita, Dallas, Austin, and Washington, D.C.), and while we will continue to travel to other states and metro areas where we've forged major training partnerships (Colorado, Georgia, and a number of others), JFA is eager to build relationships with churches, schools, and organizations in any region where we are invited to speak to groups and facilitate outreach events with one of our three large exhibits or other outreach tools.  Contact Steve with questions or to connect him with friends in the D.C. area who would appreciate JFA.

Recent and Upcoming Events in NV, KS, LA, OH, OK, TX, and CO ; Photos ; JFA Prayer Team Updates ; Social Media Updates (FB ; Twitter)

 

Note: This is the "Pray for Conversations" portion of JFA's March 2017 Resource Bulletin.  Click here to see all Resource Bulletins.

 

Featured Resource: "What Do You Mean?" (Sept. 2016)

In “What Do You Mean?” (Sept. 2016), Rebecca Haschke described in word-for-word detail how the success of a conversation hinged on one clarification question — a clarification question you can easily learn to use yourself!  Both this one question and Rebecca’s presentation of the Equal Rights Argument throughout the conversation will help prepare you for starting your own conversation using JFA’s “MIA” exhibit panel (below)!

Read online or get a copy by mail (JFA Office: 316-683-6426).

Note: This post is the "Prepare for Conversations" portion of JFA's March 2017 Resource Bulletin.  Click here to see all of JFA's Resource Bulletins.