While overturning Roe v. Wade will not prevent abortions, it will leave it to the states to decide if they will allow it. We should approach questions we may face with the attitude of “What would Jesus do?”
The pregnancy has already occurred, whether it is current or in the distant past does not matter. What does matter is how we, as a Church, respond. Many people think the Church is the organization or the buildings. The Church is those of us that are members of Christ’s body. How will we handle this topic? Will we voice our beliefs to our elected officials? Will we share our concerns with our priests? Will we pray for guidance? Will we support women and guide them to resources that can help? What is the Church doing besides pointing out that abortion does end the life of an unborn baby?
Thankfully, the Church does a great deal to support pregnant women, new mothers, and those who have had an abortion. Unfortunately, our Church is not nearly as successful when it comes to publicizing the good we do. You might say we do not do a good job of marketing, or are too effective at making sure our left hand does not know what our right hand is doing. So, when asked how does the Church support pregnant women, point out that our love and compassion extends to them and we help direct them to the many agencies that support their needs.
Resources for pregnant women include:
Walking with Moms in Need, https://www.walkingwithmoms.com/. Our diocese implemented this over a year ago. Most parishes have a contact person and a list of local resources for women. Some of these resources include: Birthright of New London, www.birthright.org/newlondon; Birthright of Windham, www.birthright.org/windham;
Care Net Pregnancy Resource Center, http://www.carenetsect.org/;
Women’s Center of Eastern CT, www.womenscenterec.com;
and ABC Women’s Center, Inc, www.abcwomenscenter.org.
We must also mention the help the Knights of Columbus have given by donating ultrasound devices that assist in monitoring pregnancies.
Just over the border, Choices Women’s Pregnancy Center in Westerly, RI, www.choicesrhodeisland.com, 401-596-2880.
Resources for new mothers include:
Nurse Family Partnership, Visiting Nurse Association, https://www.nursefamilypartnership.org/locations/connecticut/
Help for pregnant and new moms that are low income covering Clinton to Middletown to the RI border.
St. Vincent DePaul in Norwich www.svdpp.org, 860-889-7374, and Middletown www.svdmiddletown.org, 860-344-0097.
Lebanon Children’s Wardrobe
Children’s clothing and other items available to anyone.
The layette consists of many baby items to help the family care for their newborn child, including diapers size one, onesies, T-shirts, diaper wipes, booties, and sleepers.
There are many different providers, do an internet search for one near you.
Of course, there is also Catholic Charities. This organization provides services that include emergency basic needs, intensive case management, pregnancy and parenting support, assistance with adoption, and assistance with SNAP enrollment. Here in our diocese we have locations in Norwich, Willimantic, Middletown, and New London. Start at https://www.ccfsn.org/ for more help with the location most convenient for you.
Resources for women who have gone through an abortion include:
Project Rachel. This nationwide program has contacts in every diocese. In our diocese you can find help at 860-861-4439, email@example.com. There are also retreats to aid in healing after an abortion. You can find information at www.Rachelsvineyard.org.
Our diocese Council of Catholic Women, through its parish representatives also provides support to women under all circumstances. We also have the mercy Christ gives us through the sacrament of reconciliation. Here we have a beautiful sacrament that provides forgiveness, and healing. As you can see, the Church does provide a compassionate response to those considering or who have had an abortion.
By Mark Desrosiers