August 2016 E-Newsletter

        PLM

Life Line
PLM UPDATE
Year to Date 2016

  • Babies Saved: 31

  • Literature packets offered: 900

  • Office referrals: 30

      114 Office Park Plaza, Suite B, Jackson, MS 39206   Phone: 601-956-8636    Fax: 601-206-1233   Email: plm@prolifemississippi.org
If you are having trouble viewing this E-Newsletter you can view it from our website at www.prolifemississippi.org  Email: plm@prolifemississippi.org

Table of Contents

UP COMING EVENTS

National Day of Remembrance - September 10, 2016 - 12:30 p.m.

40 Days for Life - September 28 - November 6, 2016

Life Chain - October 2, 2016 - 2 p.m.

MS State Fair - October 5-16, 2016

PLM Christmas Party - December 9, 2016

Two years ago, three national pro-life groups announced the first “National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children” to honor the unborn at the grave sites where they are buried.  Although there is no such grave site in Mississippi, PLM will once again sponsor a memorial service to mourn the lives of the thousands of  Mississippi babies killed by legalized abortion since 1973.  This event will take place on Saturday, September 10, at 12:30 p.m. at the corner of Mississippi Street and North President Street in downtown Jackson.  

“We chose this site because it was used by the Mississippi Baptist Convention Board to collect 50 million pennies to fund an endowment for pro-life causes in Mississippi,” stated PLM president Judy Batson.  

The pennies were placed in a glass case, pictured on the left, called the “Memorial to the Missing”, and represented the grim reality of the 50 million babies killed by legalized abortion from 1973 through 2005.

The memorial has since been replaced by a square with a plaque in the center that reads:

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

2 Chronicles 7:14

“Our memorial service will be led this year by Pastor Richard Morgan of Koinonia Baptist Church,” continued Batson. “Please come join us as we honor our missing Mississippi babies.”

Top of Page

2016 Pro-Life Mississippi
Spring Banquet & Silent Auction

The annual Spring Banquet of PLM, held on April 21, 2016, at Jackson First Baptist Church, delivered an evening of inspiring testimonies, amazing silent auction offerings, good food and fellowship.  

The Keynote address was given by national pro-life speaker and attorney, Rebecca Kiessling.  Conceived in rape, Rebecca recognizes with profound insight the intrinsic worth and dignity of every human life, regardless of the circumstances of his or her beginnings.  She shared her passion for the legal recognition of the personhood of all unborn children, and urged excluding exceptions for rape from all pro-life legislation.

We also heard the testimony of Juda Myers, the founder of Choices 4 Life. Juda, also conceived in rape, came to Jackson to lead Freedom March. The March, which was held at the Mississippi State Capitol on Friday, May 6, marked the 50th anniversary of the passage of the first law in our country legalizing abortion in cases of rape or incest.  This law was passed in Jackson, Mississippi on May 8, 1966.

An unexpected blessing occurred when the Master of Ceremonies for our banquet, Heather Sopia, meteorologist for WLBT TV ( pictured on the right), shared her testimony of her mother’s unplanned teenage pregnancy.

Governor Phil Bryant and First Lady Deborah Bryant stopped by to show their support but had to leave before the banquet started.

Pro-Life Mississippi Honors
Bill & Harriet Ashley at the
2016 Spring Banquet.

Special recognition was given to Harriet and Bill Ashley for over 30 years of faithful pro-life work in Mississippi.  In presenting the Ashleys with a plaque expressing PLM’s appreciation for their extraordinary diligence, president Judy Batson likened the Pro-Life movement to a stool with four legs, covered with an umbrella of prayer: Education, Legislation, Alternatives and Direct Action, and explained that they had been involved in all these areas of service.

Bill and Harriet became members of Right to Life of Jackson, now Pro-Life Mississippi, in 1979, when it was first being organized by Dr. Paul Fowler. Harriet worked as the Office Manager/Secretary for 10 years before retiring in 1995. Harriet and Bill have both served as board members with Pro-Life Mississippi. Some of the things Harriet and Bill have done for the pro-life movement includes:

  • Travel to pro-life events across the country
  • Partucipated in Operation Rescue and Face the Truth campaigns
  • Collecting signatures to put Mississippi's Personhood Amendment on the ballot
  • Faithfully sidewalk counseled in front of Mississippi abortion clinics for over 30 years
  • Working at the Pro-Life Mississippi booth during the State Fair
  • Supporting the work of Mississippi's Crisis Pregnancy Centers
  • Effectively recruiting others to get involved in protecting life (i.e. our current president of Pro-Life Mississippi is a Harriet Ashley recruit).
Pro-Life Mississippi felt they needed to let Harriet and Bill know just how much they are Appreciated and Loved for all the hard work they have done over the years for the protection of life.

Top of Page

September 28 - November 6, 2016

Once again it is time for the fall 40 Days for Life prayer vigil. The 40 Days for Life website explains its mission and method thus:

40 Days for Life is the largest internationally coordinated pro-life mobilization in history, helping people in local communities end the injustice of abortion through:

PRAYER & FASTING:  Knowing that “with God, all things are possible,” people of faith and conscience unite in 40 days of prayer and fasting

COMMUNITY OUTREACH:  The pro-life message is taken proactively to every corner of your community during a local 40 Days for Life campaign

PEACEFUL VIGIL:  A focused, 40-day prayer vigil is held outside an abortion facility or public place in your city

“PLM has sponsored two 40 Days for Life campaigns a year, in the spring and fall, for over 7 years,” said vigil coordinator and PLM President Judy Batson. “We have seen the fruit of this focused prayer and presence at Mississippi’s only remaining abortion clinic.  We have confirmed dozens of moms and babies saved from abortion each time we engage in this effort.”

The fall 2016 campaign will officially begin on Wednesday, September 28th at noon with an opening ceremony on the sidewalk at the Jackson Women’s Health Organization abortion clinic, located at 2903 North State Street in Jackson. This event typically lasts an hour, fitting into most lunch schedules.  There will be a closing event at the same location to end the 40 Days for Life campaign on Sunday, November 6th at 2:00 p.m.

“If you have taken part in one of the past 40 Days for Life prayer vigils, we invite you to join us again,” said Duran. “If you have not taken part in 40 Days for Life, but God has put it on your heart to do something to help end abortion, this would be your best way to get started.  We ask people to sign up for one hour during any of the 40 days to come out to the sidewalk at the abortion clinic in and pray. We encourage you to ask church members, friends and family to join you for that hour. We know just the mere presence of praying people on the sidewalk saves the lives of babies and mothers from abortion.” 

If you have never been out to the sidewalk at the abortion clinic before, you may call the PLM office to arrange for one of our seasoned volunteers to meet you there.

Top of Page

2016

Life Chain is a national pro-life event that began in 1987. Last year, over 1,600 cities and towns across the country participated in Life Chains. Annually, on the first Sunday in October, LIFE CHAIN invites the churches in each city and town across North America to stand on a designated local sidewalk, hold a pro-life sign and pray for one hour. This year’s Life Chain will be held on Sunday, October 2, 2016 from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. on the corner of N. State St. and Fondren Pl. Signs will be distributed at the designated site. These signs are provided by PLM and are made available by the generous donations of our supporters.

One of the rules Life Chain started with and follows to this day is: "Do not use graphic signs". Life Chain understands there is a time and place for the graphic signs but Life Chain strives to move reluctant Christians from the pews to the sidewalks, and most of them are not ready for graphic signs. The signs used during Life Chain have the following sayings printed on the front of them:

  • ABORTION KILLS CHILDREN
  • JESUS FORGIVES AND HEALS
  • ADOPTION: THE LOVING OPTION
  • LORD, FORGIVE US AND OUR NATION
  • ABORTION HURTS WOMEN
  • PRAY TO END ABORTION
  • LIFE—THE FIRST INALIENABLE RIGHT

The back of the signs have Prayer Topics, Songs of Meditation, the Life Chain Code of Conduct, and a compelling statement on The Purpose of LIFE CHAIN.

Last year saw about 30 people participate in the Jackson area Life Chain. We would like to have that number double or even triple this year. We warmly welcome Silent No More members with their powerful "I Regret My Abortion” signs.

Top of Page

BILLBOARDS ACROSS MISSISSIPPI

Location: I-220 , 0.5 miles north of Michael Avalon on the East side facing North

Pro-Life Mississippi has put up a second billboard since initiating its outdoor educational ad campaign in 2015.  

 “Billboards are an effective way to bring a positive, persuasive pro-life message, offering information and alternatives, to people who may not be reached in any other way,” states PLM president Judy Batson. “Each sign has a 1-800 phone number on it which takes the caller to a pregnancy center hotline that gives them the number to their local pregnancy center.  Each billboard also has little facts about unborn babies that help the mother to know it’s a person she is carrying who deserves to live.”

PLM board member Mary Trepanier is especially excited about the billboard effort. Trepanier, who moved to Mississippi in 2009, had worked with the non-profit, non-political organization, PROLIFE Across AMERICA, when living in New York state.  “Utilizing their inventory of gentle pro-life messages, our Respect Life committee was able to keep at least 2 billboards up in Ulster County for more than 10 years,” she states. “When I got acquainted with the wonderful work of Pro-Life Mississippi, I knew that adding a billboard campaign would extend their efforts in educating citizens about the humanity of the unborn.  So often these tender and touching ads are the only visible sign offering hope and help to someone who may be on the brink of an abortion decision.”   

Not only did Trepanier convince the PLM board to get started with the billboard effort, she also got recruited to chair and promote the campaign as well.  “The cost of the reusable vinyl billboard itself runs about $175, while the fee for renting the billboard space varies with the site,” she states.  "Typically the cost of renting a billboard for 4 months in the metro Jackson area runs about $1000. I am elated that the Knights of Columbus of my parish of St. Paul in Flowood have pledged $2,000 to help fund a billboard. I would like to see every county in Mississippi with a locally sponsored pro-life billboard.”

If you or your church or Sunday school class would like to sponsor a pro-life sign in your area, please call the PLM office and speak with our office manager, Tammy Tillman.  You can choose the sign you want from PROLIFE Across America’s extensive inventory. You can have the name of your organization on the billboard as well. 

 If you or your church or Sunday school class feel led to sponsor a pro-life sign in your area, please call the PLM office and speak with our office manager, Tammy Tillman.  You can choose the sign you want from PROLIFE Across America’s extensive inventory. You can have the name of your organization on the billboard as well. When sending in donatins for the billboards please specify that the donation is for the billboards.

Top of Page

Mississippi State Fair

A visit to the Pro-Life Mississippi booth at the State Fair Trademart building can be life-changing.  Just ask Brian Alexander, PLM board member who has faithfully helped staff the booth for the past ten years. “I love engaging the people who stop to look at our display in friendly discussions.”  Even if they profess to be pro ‘choice’ at the beginning of our conversation, most leave with our literature and a promise to think more deeply about the morality of abortion.  Changing minds and hearts about the personhood of our tiniest citizens is what PLM’s presence at the fair is all about.”

PLM president, Judy Batson, agrees.  “When the fair opens on Wednesday, October 5, PLM will be engaging in its largest educational outreach to the community for the year.  Tens of thousands of people pass by the booth and many of them will stop to talk with our volunteers.  Many lend us a moment of their time to encourage us, and many more are seeking information.” 

“I particularly enjoy interacting with the young people, the teenagers, who come to our booth drawn by the baby models on display,” continues Alexander.  “Particularly rewarding is when I spend a few minutes talking to a young teen and they're back 5 minutes later with their entire group, “You gotta see this!”  We encourage them to pick up the models, which are scaled to the size and weight of a baby at that stage of life. They are all surprised by how heavy the 30 week baby model is - and the baby still has 10 weeks more to grow!  I use this opportunity to engage them in a discussion about sexual purity, handing out brochures that encourage abstinence and educating them about the dangers of STDs.  The kids are often interested in our abstinence jewelry and pro-life T-shirts.  The PLM booth is a showcase for everything we do in support of life, and the results we've seen over the years have been immeasurable.”

PLM is looking for volunteers to help maintain our fair presence this year.  The fair runs from October 5th to the 16th, and people are needed to staff several shifts each day. If you have never worked our booth before, we will put you with one of our seasoned volunteers who man the fair every year.  Like Brian Alexander, you may be surprised at how much you enjoy it! Please contact our office at 601-956-8636 or email PLM@ProLifeMississippi.org for more information.

Top of Page

A Wake Up Call from the Sidewalk.

At the risk of being mis-understood and misrepresented, I must go ahead and say this: the African American community, and churches, need to wake up. As we stand outside of the abortion mill in Mississippi, easily more than 80% of the people that go in are black. Easily 98% of the people out there pleading with them to keep their babies are white. And every pastor, except for one, is white. There may be more. I am not there everyday.

I am just speaking from my own experience each week, and my wife's experience each week. Today was different however.

Today, an African and a couple of African Americans show up with a few kids to plead for life! What happens? The African American “manager” of the murder mill comes out to “rebuke” them for trying to defend the lives of dozens of African American and a few white babies. Why? Why does she come out to confront them and not the others who have been out there week after week? Maybe because they are more of a threat? Maybe because the African American community might be waking up to the fact that it is no coincidence that there is such a deafening silence in their churches and communities when it comes to murdering unborn babies (I have actually had black ladies tell me their pastors told them it was no problem to have an abortion. Just ask forgiveness).

African Americans are being murdered in the inner city of Jackson virtually every day. But far more African Americans (100% of whom are innocent of any crime) are being murdered every week in the fancy, clean, hip, and “crime free” area of Jackson called Fondren. I appeal to the African American pastors, Christians, and life-loving community to take a stand on this issue by taking a stand on the sidewalks. Though I am no expert by any means, I will be glad to take you out there and help you, or your church, get started. For the sake of Christ and His Name.

A most unworthy servant of so good a Master,
A. Kevin Ivy
Pastor, Providence Baptist Church
Posted on Facebook on April 27, 2016

Top of Page

Walk 4 Life

PLM’s annual Walk for Life was held on Saturday, June 4, 2016.  Despite stormy weather predictions, about 50 determined trekkers set out from St. Richard Catholic Church to travel the 2 miles to Mississippi’s last remaining abortion facility.  There, the walkers had a short time of prayer, releasing balloons in remembrance of the hundreds of babies whose lives tragically ended there this past year.  After making the return trip to the church, they were greeted with a delicious brunch cooked and served by St. Richard’s Knights of Columbus.

During the celebratory brunch, awards were given to the walkers who raised the greatest number of pledges.  Perennial prize winner David Dabney again captured first place, winning a $100 Walmart gift card.  Second and third place went to Kenneth Tillman and Lynda Marshall respectively, who received gift cards for $50 and $25.

            David Dabney                             Kenneth Tillman                         Lynda Marshall

This year, a new award was initiated to recognize the youngest and oldest walkers.  Maya Voborsky and Harriet Ashley were identified and honored.

This was the first time that PLM board member Veronica Naylor directed the Walk for Life.  “Although our numbers were small this year, I am proud of the folks who braved the dire weather predictions,” said Naylor.  “Our God is faithful, and the rains held off all morning for us.  My long range goal is to have walks like ours taking place simultaneously across the state.  Not only will this raise money for our pro-life efforts, but it will display the strength of the pro-life sentiment in Mississippi.”  In addition, Naylor gave special thanks to Deputy Colvin Mann and Deputy David Sewell for keeping our walkers safe during their journey, and to Kaye Allen for taking all the photographs for the event.

Top of Page

Biking for Babies

On July 14, ten young people with Biking for Babies, hailing from all across America, pedaled their way from New Orleans to Jackson and into the hearts of local pro-life supporters.  Wearing pro-life t-shirts and traveling as a group, the bikers made a powerful visual witness to the sanctity of life.

The team was welcomed by about 50 well-wishers with a meet ’n greet sponsored by PLM and St. Richard Catholic Church.  A delicious spaghetti supper (with all the trimmings) was prepared by the Knights of Columbus, blessed by Father John Bohn and enjoyed by all.  When Father Bohn asked how far they had biked that day, he was suitably impressed when told 112 miles!

This year the team consisted of eight riders (Ride Leader Christina Woodman, Father Patrick Hirtz, Kevyn Wiskirchen, Erin Dempsey, Andrew Jones, Celeste Woodman, Christine Kania, and Jonathan Simpson) and two support crew (NOLA Route Leader Sarah Collins, and Joseph Schultz).   Each team member sat at a different table while they ate so they could spend time getting acquainted with everyone.  PLM Office Manger Tammy Tillman said that her son Kenneth really enjoyed talking with Kevyn Wiskirchen.  Center for Pregnancy Choices director Barbara Beavers brought a young mother and her children to the dinner.  “It was heartwarming for me to see Route Leader Sarah Collins spend time playing with the children,” she said.  “It’s obvious that these young people really do care for babies.” 

After the meal, Judy Batson thanked everyone for coming and asked each team member to come up and tell a little something about themselves. As each one came up to share, they told not only about themselves but about the pro-life organization they were riding for.

Quoting from the Biking for Babies website, “Our vision is for young people in America to represent every pregnancy center in the United States, every year, on our summer bicycle ride from NOLA to Memphis and Memphis to Chicago. Imagine 2,500 young athletes biking through the heart of America… being passed by thousands of Americans witnessing the extreme sacrifice of these young people for others with challenges that they didn’t choose.  Over 60 college students and young adults have participated since 2009—each of them building friendships with each other despite hardship along the way and with those we have been honored and blessed to meet during our travels.”

As the meeting broke up, Biking for Babies t-shirts were made available to all for a small donation.

“This is the 5th summer that Biking for Babies has stopped in Jackson on their annual ride from New Orleans to Chicago,” stated PLM president Judy Batson.  “They collect pledges from pro-life supporters and donate the money to pro-life groups along their route.  PLM is a grateful recipient.”

Top of Page

P
R
E
S
I
D
E
N
T
'S

Corner

As president of PLM, I have come to understand and appreciate the absolute necessity of the undergirding of prayer for our pro-life efforts.  For PLM to effectively carry out its mission of educating the citizens of Mississippi about the sanctity of human life, we rely on you, our loyal supporters, to keep us in your prayers.  Therefore, I am sharing some of our prayer requests with you:

Pray Psalm 4:

Please pray that women going into the abortion mill will call upon the Lord and receive the relief only He can give them in their distress.

Please pray that we (all of us pro-lifers) would be angry against the sin of abortion, yet not sin in our anger, but would put our trust in the Lord.

Read Psalm 23:

Pray for our pastors and church leaders who speak to their churches about precious life in the womb, that God will anoint them and fill their cups to overflowing with His goodness and mercy.

Read Isaiah 40:10-11:

Pray for our upcoming fall campaign for 40 Days for Life and all of the groups coming to the abortion clinic to pray during Sept. 21-Nov. 6.  Pray God will strengthen them as they speak out to defend the pre-born children.

Read Psalm 104:

Pray for PLM’s work at the MS State Fair:  Pray that all our volunteers be able to share the love of Jesus and His love for children and the truth about life for the babies in the womb with many fair goers this fall.  Pray all the work that is done during the 10 days of the fair will be pleasing to the Lord our God.

Read Psalm 139: 13-18:

Pray for our billboard campaign.  Pray that the message of our billboards (during the coming months) will send a strong message that life is precious and wonderful to all who see them.  Pray that sufficient funds for the billboard campaign will come that we can support them around the state.  Thank God the Father that He is the One who will complete the good work He has begun.

Thank you for your faithfulness.

Top of Page

To unsubscribe from our email list email us and type "remove from email list" in the subject line.