In anticipation of Children’s Day, honored every second Sunday of June, Melinda Delahoyde, President of Care Net, a network of more than 1,100 pregnancy centers across the country, called on Americans to show love and respect to all children, born and unborn.
“With the nightly news describing horrific neglect and abuse of children, now more than ever, children need a special day of support and commitment. Children are a gift from God – they are our future and as such should be celebrated and cherished every day,” she said.
She added, “Child’s Day is even more important, because it is our responsibility to protect children who can’t protect themselves, including the unborn. Recent Gallup polling shows increased support for the pro-life agenda and creationism. Both of those polls point to the belief in intelligent design and the core belief that each child is a child of God.”
Delahoyde has four children, and recently shared the story of her first child, Will, who was born with Down syndrome on EveryLifeIsBeautiful.com. In her film, Delahoyde recalls her experience of finding out about Will’s condition. She also recognizes there are challenges in raising a special needs child, but acknowledges that every life – born and unborn – is beautiful and valuable.
Delahoyde said, in the United States, National Children’s Day has deep historical roots that predates the observation of Children’s Day before Mother’s and Father’s Days.
The celebration of a special Children’s Day in America dates from the 1860s and earlier. The Methodist Episcopal Church at the Methodist Conference of 1868 recommended that second Sunday in June be observed annually as Children’s Day. The General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in 1883 designated the “the second Sabbath in June as Children’s Day.
Numerous churches and denominations, including the African Methodist Episcopal Church, African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, and the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, now observe the second Sunday in June as Children’s Day.
“Care Net’s vision is a culture where lives are transformed by the Gospel of Jesus Christ and every woman chooses life for herself and her unborn child,” Delahoyde said. “Last year, Care Net pregnancy centers served more than 400,000 women, offering them free services such as ultrasounds, pregnancy tests, STD tests and counseling services. Nationally, pregnancy centers have a 97 percent client satisfaction rate, and they have been honored by numerous states and, in 2008, by the White House for their service to our country.”