Five Days in Northeast Kansas

Impact Report
September 2019

Our team gathered from all over the country a few weeks ago (September 8-12) to train students from Benedictine College in northeast Kansas and to conduct outreach with those students both at Benedictine and at the University of Kansas (KU). This Impact Report gives you a glimpse of what our team accomplished during those five days. Please join us in praying for the students you see pictured here.

Sunday (Benedictine College): Kaitlyn Donihue speaks to 28 students (not all pictured) who attended the Sunday seminar. Ten returned on Monday night for advanced dialogue training.

Monday (Benedictine College): 28 additional students attended an evening workshop.

Tuesday (Benedictine College): From left to right, Tammy (light blue shirt), Grace (red hat), Kaitlyn (blue hat), Jeremy (blue shirt), and Jon (shorts) engage students in conversation.

Wednesday (KU): Eric (right), president of the Wichita chapter of Life Runners, talks with a KU student.

Sunday (Benedictine College): Jeremy Gorr steps into the “blue box” as he helps students think through “who would be in and who would be out” if various explanations of equal rights were true.

Monday (Benedictine College): In our conversations during outreach at Benedictine, we encouraged students to join us for a workshop that evening at Benedictine and outreach later in the week at KU.

Wednesday (KU): Catherine (left) was one of nine Benedictine College students who participated in the outreach at KU.

Thursday (KU): Tammy Cook (right) interacts with a passerby at KU.

Thursday (KU): Paul Kulas (center) and volunteer Rebekah (second from right) interact with students near the poll table at KU.

Thursday (KU): JFA staff members and volunteers paused for a quick photo at the end of our second outreach day at KU. Among them are three Benedictine students who traveled more than an hour each way to spend about an hour at KU with our team.

Conversation Starter (VIDEO): "Blood Donation and Bodily Rights Arguments"

We think sharing ERI’s video “Blood Donation and Bodily Right’s Arguments” is a great way to start a conversation about abortion with a friend (get more information about the video in this month’s Featured Resource post).

Click above to see Tim’s video and explore all JFA’s  Conversation Starters on Twitter .

Click above to see Tim’s video and explore all JFA’s Conversation Starters on Twitter.

Tim is fair to the opposing viewpoint, but his point is also hardhitting. Note that some viewers might object to the use of the word “freakin” in a few places in this video. We suggest you watch it first and judge if it will be a good thing to share with a friend. In addition, since this is an intellectual approach to bodily rights arguments, you might find that sharing JFA’s “It’s Her Body” series would make for a good introduction.

Pray for Hearts to Be Softened so that Intellectual Arguments Can Do Their Work

Even as we train pro-life Christians to engage in dialogue using the best arguments and a habit of good listening, we realize that God changes the heart of a person to incline him to be open to the intellectual arguments we present. Pray for each person who watches ERI’s video, our featured resource for September (share the blog post linked here to start a conversation using the video), and please pray for the heart of each person impacted through our recent and upcoming events:

  • September Events: Trinity University (TX), Benedictine College (KS), University of Kansas (KS), University of Houston (TX), Pittsburg State (KS)

  • Oct. 10-13: Seminars in Colorado

  • Oct. 15, 21: Outreach at George Mason University in Virginia

  • Oct. 27: Workshop in Michigan

  • Oct. 31-Nov. 5: Various events in Oklahoma, including outreach at OU

Is Pregnancy Like Organ Donation?

Many people say that choosing abortion is morally equivalent to withdrawing life support - simply choosing to “not help” the unborn. Helping may be admirable, they say, but to “not help” is not the same as killing. It is as reasonable as declining to donate your blood or organs to someone in critical need.

In the ERI video below, Timothy Brahm makes a 12-minute case that this neutral “not help” option does not exist with pregnancy as it does with blood and organ donation scenarios.

Do you think that choosing abortion is a neutral choice, simply declining to support the unborn with your body? What do you think of Tim’s response to this view?

Pray with JFA - Recent Spring and Summer Events

UCLA Outreach - May 2019

Look at this list of JFA’s spring events (see page 3), as well as JFA’s summer events and upcoming outreach events (listed below). We are in awe of what God has done through your support of JFA and through your prayers. Let’s pray together for each of the people who were challenged at each of these events to actively love unborn children and their parents.

Summer JFA Events

  • Seminar in Pennsylvania (6/25)

  • Workshop in Kansas (6/25)

  • Outreach at Wichita State University (6/26)

  • Seminar for Seminarians in Kansas (7/12-7/13)

  • Seminar in Kansas (7/23)

  • Outreach at Wichita State University (7/24)

  • Michigan Presentations (Multiple Dates)

  • Ohio Seminars (8/9-8/10)

Recent and Upcoming Outreach Events:

  • Trinity University (TX)

  • Benedictine College (KS)

  • University of Kansas (KS)

  • University of Houston (TX)

  • University of Texas at El Paso (TX)

  • Pittsburg State University (KS)

  • University of Oklahoma (OK)

  • George Mason University (VA)

Prepare for Conversations with "The Power of Common Ground"

In his newsletter for September (“The Power of Common Ground”), Jeremy Gorr shares a great model of using common ground in a real conversation. You can use his letter to equip yourself with questions that will help you find common ground with others regarding abortion. He also discusses an approach to finding genuine common ground that avoids compromising one’s beliefs. In a footnote, Jeremy mentions JFA Director Steve Wagner’s book, Common Ground Without Compromise, which you can get for free at www.commongroundbook.com. That book features 25 questions you can use to begin a conversation with agreement instead of hostility.

Start a Conversation Using This T-Shirt Design

This month, we invite you to start a conversation with common ground by sharing the recent JFA Blog post, “Is Every Child a Work of Art?” The post refers to an Abort73.com shirt design. We think the optimism the shirt communicates about already-born human beings can help us find common ground with friends and neighbors to get a conversation about abortion started on the right foot. We don’t know for sure, but we think many people would respond, “Yes, I agree that every child is a work of art.” If human beings we can see are works of art, then, even if they are poor, disabled, or have some other characteristic people generally think of in a negative light, what should that teach us about human beings that may be too small to see? And if the unborn are also works of art, how should we treat them?

Start Conversations with this New EHD Video!

Share this new EHD video (our featured resource for July 2019) with a friend.

One helpful thing about EHD is that it’s aimed at better education for pregnant moms. This is a priority that has broad support among most people. You don’t even have to bring up abortion in order to tell a friend that you think this video is worth checking out! We suggest sharing it and asking your friend, “What was most interesting to you in this video?” You can also move the conversation directly to the topic of abortion by asking, “With all of the references to abortion today in the news, how do you think it would change the discussion if people watched this video and kept it in mind?” Or, you might ask, “How does this video affect your view of abortion, if at all?”

Is Every Child a Work of Art?

We really like this shirt design. Here are a few questions it brings to our minds.

What do you think?

  • Do you think every human being is a work of art?

  • Can optimism like this provide some common ground which can help with the discussion of solutions for unintended pregnancy?

  • If you think every human being is a work of art, how does that inform your position on when human rights begin?

  • Do these questions affect your position on abortion?

  • Is it helpful to use / allude to artwork in order to create dialogue about abortion, or does it seem manipulative to you?

About the T-Shirt that Inspired this Post:

The picture above is a t-shirt design made available through Abort73, and created by artist Tori Higa.  The drawing of a little girl alludes to Frida Kahlo, an unexpected source of inspiration for a pro-life message like the one written directly underneath it.  Michael Spielman, the founder and director of Abort73.com explains: 

In referencing Kahlo's likeness on behalf of a politically incorrect cause, my hope is to continue her legacy of challenging perceptions and turning stereotypes on their head. You may look at our new design and see nothing but a cute little girl; I see an opportunity for dialogue and introspection—with a cautiously optimistic nod to the future. 

To read more about the purpose and origin of the design, see Michael Spielman's article, "Frida Kahlo and the Art of Abortion."

Justice For All was inspired by a similar concept when creating "The Art of Life", an open air exhibit which made its first appearances at Colorado State University (CSU) and the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) in 2016. (See images below, or read about all the panels by clicking here.)  Responses to JFA's new exhibit have spanned a wide range, from support and excitement to disgust and anger.

What do you think (Part 2)?  

  • Is it helpful to use / allude to famous artwork in order to create dialogue about abortion, or does it seem manipulative to you?

  • What other works of art have influenced you when thinking about the meaning and value of life?

  • If human beings are a work of art, do you think that means there is an “artist”?

$5 Stethoscopes for "The Baby's Heart Beats Like Mine"

We just updated JFA’s elementary lesson plan, ”The Baby’s Heart Beats Like Mine” with a stethoscope model on which we have gotten good reviews from kids who have tested it for use with the lesson plan:

Use this Video for our Elementary Lesson Plan

For the first time that I’m aware of, EHD has recently made a 6-minute version of their rare embryoscopy footage available for download. And, it’s free.

We’re excited about this because it’s a beautiful window on the womb, but it also will fill very nicely the video component of our lesson plan, “The Baby’s Heart Beats Like Mine.” Note, the video is also available in multiple languages!


Share Lesson Plan Ideas and Feedback: "The Baby's Heart Beats Like Mine"

Use the comments section of this post to share your ideas and feedback about JFA’s elementary lesson plan, “The Baby’s Heart Beats Like Mine.”

Access, Download, Share, and Use the Lesson Plan here: www.jfaweb.org/heart-beats-like-mine

See the latest updates to the lesson by accessing our “Heart Beats Like Mine” blog tag and scrolling through the latest posts.

12 Minutes on Bodily Rights

Five years ago, JFA released a working paper to respond to the strongest versions of bodily rights arguments for abortion. Equal Rights Institute (ERI) recently released a video featuring one of the contributors to that paper, Timothy Brahm (former staff member of both JFA and ERI), in which he takes a different approach than our paper, one that we think is an even more helpful response to bodily rights. It’s called, “Blood Donation and Bodily Rights Arguments.” Some of our staff think it’s even better than our paper. In 12 minutes, Tim deftly responds to the most common challenges and gives you a framework that you can apply to the most common and most difficult bodily rights arguments. (Indeed, he also shares some reasons why our original paper may not be the most persuasive — helpful critique that we welcome!) JFA’s “It’s Her Body” series last year set the appropriate context for any discussion of bodily rights. Pairing ERI’s video with “It’s Her Body”, will give you a great primer on bodily rights, as well as a great conversation starter.

Pray with JFA (June) - Current Projects

Pray for More Advocates and More Conversations Through All of JFA’s Projects:

Here are a few of our projects and needs for which you can pray specifically this month:

  • JFA Trainers Raising Support: All of JFA’s trainers are working to raise additional support during the summer. Pray that we can successfully connect with many people.

Kaitlyn Donihue  (left) recently accepted a position to work for JFA in Michigan.

Kaitlyn Donihue (left) recently accepted a position to work for JFA in Michigan.

Susanna Buckley  (middle) recently accepted a position to work for JFA in Washington D.C.

Susanna Buckley (middle) recently accepted a position to work for JFA in Washington D.C.