Real Help for Women

Whenever I speak on the subject of abortion I always remind my listeners that it is not enough to point the finger and simply say the obvious, that abortion is wrong. We must also provide practical help for those being pushed into an abortion.

I tell them that if a scared 15-year-old girl comes to them, pregnant and alone, with no hope, what will they be doing about it? What will they offer her? If her parents have kicked her out of the home and her boyfriend says ‘get an abortion or I’m leaving,’ where does that leave her?

Simply telling her she should not have an abortion does little good at all. Instead, churches and concerned groups should have pregnancy crisis centres as part of their ministry, making a safe and comfortable place available for people such as this. They can be looked after and loved as the baby develops, and upon birth various alternatives can be examined, such as adoption or other options.

This is the very practical and necessary work all believers should aim for, be it in their churches or elsewhere. We must do all we can to help women such as this. And of course such help has always been a part of the pro-life movement. Indeed, back in 1994 an important book highlighting this very thing appeared by Frederica Mathewes-Green.

Entitled Real Choices: Offering Practical, Life-Affirming Alternatives to Abortion, it did just that. Based on extension surveys and interviews with women considering abortion, she found that in “nearly every case, the abortion was undertaken to fulfil a felt obligation to another person, a parent or boyfriend. . . . The woman felt bound to please or protect some other person, and abortion was the price she had to pay.”

In her very helpful book she offers various alternatives to abortion, and shows us how we can make a real difference in the lives of these women. And as a perfect illustration of this, an article in the Australian press has just demonstrated such caring alternatives.

In a South Australian newspaper yesterday there appeared an article about a great prolifer who lives near Adelaide and is making genuine contributions to the lives of some of these women. Here is how the piece begins: “Robyn Grace is spending thousands helping pregnant women on temporary visas keep their babies. These pregnancies would otherwise be terminated.

“The 43-year-old Mt Barker resident is meeting the medical costs which the women and their partners can’t afford because they are being allowed into the country without private health insurance, have no access to Medicare and work in low paying jobs. ‘These woman are falling pregnant and facing abortions because the costs of having the baby are prohibitive,’ Mrs Grace said.

“She has funded five migrant births with the help of donations at a cost of around $7500 each since 2009. ‘They wanted to keep their babies and I helped out, but who knows how many others are out there in the same situation without anyone to turn to.’

“Mrs Grace is married to Trevor Grace, a controversial anti-abortion candidate at the last state election, and is currently helping [migrant couple Mr and Mrs X], to have their second child. The couple were going to terminate the unplanned pregnancy because they could not afford to pay for medical costs to have the baby.

“Mr X said the couple went to a GP and explained their financial situation and were told they could visit a clinic for a ‘medical termination’. ‘At first we thought we would have to do it but my wife started to cry and that affected me,’ he said. He pays income tax and the Medicare levy, but will not receive welfare benefits for his newborn under the temporary visa conditions.”

Now that is a real case of compassionate conservatism, of offering genuine choice for pregnant women. This is the sort of sacrificial help we must offer these women wherever possible. Not everyone will have the financial resources to make such donations, but if they have a supportive church or group around them, such funds might still become available.

And there are so many other ways we can offer real help here. Simply having crisis pregnancy centres set up with volunteers willing to lend a listening ear and a compassionate heart can go a long way in this regard. The sky is really the limit in terms of what we can be doing for these women, so many of whom are being forced into having an abortion.

Most women would rather not have an abortion if they knew they had some tangible support and assistance during this difficult period. Prolifers can and should be offering such support. Well done to Robyn, Trevor and so many others who are making a practical and life-affirming difference in the lives of so many women.

And as if on cue, just as I was about to post this article, I received an email about an upcoming adoption conference. See the video here:

And conference details can be found here:

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7 Replies to “Real Help for Women”

  1. Wonderful to acknowledge these women, thanks Bill. Would also like to send out a big fat thank you to the women who have been working tirelessly for so many years at the Albury Wodonga Pregnancy Support Centre doing this same practical help and all of the Helpers of God’s Precious Infants who donate to support women who choose to continue their pregnancies after speaking to us outside the clinics.
    nna von Marburg

  2. Thank you Bill for pointing out how easy it is to preach morality without being compassionate and doing the hard work of finding practical solutions. May God have mercy on his church, that we would be found doing both wholeheartedly.
    Dale Skewes

  3. Dear Bill, Right to Life groups in Western Australia have been helping women in practical ways to keep their babies for decades but has the MSM ever highlighted this aspect of their work – NEVER to my knowledge. These Satan controlled media organisations have always bent over backwards to show them as militant and uncaring. I am elderly now but can look back to the seventies and say these things in all sincerity. I have spent many hours over these years selling raffle tickets for them as fund raising efforts but it got progressively harder to find shopping centres willing to allow you in for this cause. They would only have to get one complaint and you were out. Yet my many conversations with people over the years doing this work showed that most people disagreed with abortion on demand and were grateful for the information on it. The Australian people have been duped! Forced into accepting laws which they didn’t really want. If the Catholic population as a whole had got behind the pro life movement as they did in Ireland these laws would not have been passed but the pulpits were deafeningly silent and except for a few courageous leaders like Archbishop Hickey who is soon to retire the leadership from our priests was pathetic.
    Patricia Halligan

  4. Gone are the days when the MSM simply ignored the pro-life movement. They now actively promote criminal sanctions against them.
    Yesterday I read a column by one, Susie O’Brien, who compared those assisting women facing abortion with the ‘Occupy’ protestors.
    When the mayor of the city concerned called in the police to have the latter ejected, Susie suggested that pro-lifers outside abortion clinics be treated similarly.
    Dunstan Hartley

  5. Yes, excellent article – as Patricia says, we have several pregnancy help groups here in Perth which offer accommodation and support to many women and girls in need. Parishes collect “Baby Bundles” etc. All good efforts though more would be better!!
    I’d like to draw attention to another serious injustice which was discussed at a recent prayer meeting and which your article refers to in mentioning the Sherasia family. How can it be acceptable that people, brought here deliberately on special visas, who pay taxes and the medicare levy yet are denied the benefits which other taxpayers receive whilst refugees do receive those benefits?
    I’m not suggesting that desperate people who arrive in great need should be denied help,most certainly we should provide support till people in dire circumstances can be independent. But what of those like the family mentioned above, who are making the normal contributions – where is the justice in their situation?
    Anna Cook

  6. I want to thank all of my volunteers at our local Queens, NY crisis pregnancy center, THe Bridge to Life. We have helped over 4000 women and their families with clothing and other material assistance this year alone. Most importantly, our work is to give the women that come to us the resources to choose life for their babies. We rely solely on contributions. Anyone can volunteer or donate by going to our website. God bless what we are able to do for His children.
    Catherine Donohoe, US

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