You might have had trouble navigating through the streets of downtown Devils Lake last Wednesday night.
Perhaps you had to wait as the approximately 100 advocates for life marched together holding candles, saying prayers, and remembering all of those who have been affected by abortion.
A little girl walked out of one of the downtown shops and asked her mother, “Why are these people walking and holding candles?”
It is a fair question. Why march?
After walking twice around two city blocks, attendees listened to four women who shared their experiences of having abortions, suffering the aftermath, and eventually finding hope and healing.
All four voiced the need for more individuals to march in support of the unborn so that fewer women will make the decision based on their own fear and insecurity.
Jody Clemens, the featured speaker, said, “We want to share the truth of our stories in love so that you will be better equipped to help those who are considering abortion or who have already chosen abortion.”
The Ramsey County Area Right to Life organization hosted the March, the first in the area since 2020.
Lynne Webster, outgoing president of the RCARTL, said the organization has sponsored the event “to give a local option for pro-life people to remember the more than 63,000,000 babies that have lost their lives to abortion and to have a public showing of people supporting life.”
As the four women shared their stories with participants in Devils Lake, they said, “Abortion is not just a word but a real-life event for post-abortive women, and they are your sister, your friend, your co-worker, and the woman sitting in your church.”
25% of American women have undergone an abortion by age 45.
The room was silent as the speakers detailed their lives before abortion, why they chose abortion, what happened the day of the abortion, and what happened afterward.
The abortion methods varied- chemical, surgical, suction- but the outcome did not. “I was crying during the procedure as reality became clear. My baby was dying or dead, and I could never un-do it.”
As one woman detailed the hardship of labor and delivery at home, alone after a chemical abortion, she also shared the statistic that 50% of abortions occur at home, with no medical supervision. 33% of those who have a chemical abortion visit the emergency room at some point during the abortion process.
“If the abortion industry cared for women, they wouldn’t advocate this barbaric practice,” she said.
After choosing abortion, each woman kept it a secret for 10 years, 12 years, 17 years.
“We felt exempt from the grace of God because our sin was too big and too bad. We were hopeless. We had unresolved grief because we didn’t think we had a right to grieve. We chose this. Even though we murdered, our actions were not punishable in the courts of this land, but we knew they were punishable in the courts of heaven. Abortion is a crime against humanity,” they shared.
However, their sense of condemnation was not the end of their stories.
Each woman shared how she came to experience the love and forgiveness of God, her family, and her self.
“The love of God melted my heart,” one woman shared. “If Jesus really came for the sick, then I knew He came for me and women like me. We were sick, and unless He saved us, we knew that we would die.”
“All our fear was replaced with God’s freedom. All of our pain was replaced by God’s peace. All of our grief was replaced by God’s grace. That’s our Jesus. We are fully forgiven, deeply healed, and eternally restored.”
As the evening ended, emcee Dean Bittner, and his wife, Dr. Heidi Bittner, the medical director for our local Women’s Care Center detailed resources that are available in the Lake Region.
The Women’s Care Center offers free medical grade pregnancy tests, ultrasounds, counseling, and information and can be reached at 701-662-2229. Dr. Bittner also shared that chemical abortion reversal medications are available in our area.
Why march? So that more women will choose life for their unborn children and for themselves.
The Ramsey County Area Right to Life is a non-denominational local chapter of the North Dakota Right to Life organization and meets monthly, usually on Monday evenings at the St. Joseph Parish Center. Everyone is welcome to attend meetings.