I think we can all remember what life was like at 15. We spent a lot of time with friends and at school, enjoyed listening to music, maybe played in some sports or had some other hobbies. But I don’t think many look back at this often challenging time between childhood and adulthood and said, “I spent hours praying outside an abortion clinic.”
Brenn does. She is a 15-year old from McMinnville, Oregon. She likes doing all the “normal” things that teenagers do. But she also likes to go to her local Planned Parenthood clinic with some signs and a couple of folding chairs to pray for the women and babies inside. I’ll let Brenn tell you, in her own words, why she does such a unique and courageous thing:
“My aunt, who has always been a role model to me, invited me to go and do 40 Days for Life, a peaceful prayer vigil outside of Planned Parenthood. I was kind of nervous, but I went anyway. I was just expecting to make it one-time thing–who wants to spend their time praying for strangers at an abortion clinic? But God changed my heart that day. I was reminded of the popular chorus, ‘Break my heart for what breaks yours.’ God broke my heart for the babies who don’t have anyone to speak up for them and the women who are broken because of the choices they’ve made.
I have also been inspired to try and start the pro-life club at school, after seeing so many people, some of whom I recognized from school, going inside and coming out of the Planned Parenthood building. I want to try and show people that there is another option besides abortion, and to also show the people who have already had abortions that it’s okay and we still love them and want to help them.”
Brenn isn’t just a unique teenager—she is unique. Period. How many people do you know spend their free time praying outside abortion clinics?
When I told Brenn she was brave, she had this to say: “It was scary at first, but I really don’t feel like I am brave… I am just doing what I think is right. My advice to others is that if you are passionate about something and want to make a change you should follow your heart.”
Here in Oregon, we have the unfortunate “fame” of being the only state in the Union without a single restriction on abortion. However, that has resulted in a whole generation of pro-lifers not taking for granted hard-won victories and being willing to suffer hardships to change our state’s culture.
Connor York, president of the Students for Life club at the extremely liberal Oregon State University, recently spent his whole Saturday, along with SFL leaders from other colleges around Oregon, protesting at events for abortion rights supporter Dr. Monica Wehby. (She is running for the Republican Party nomination for US Senate against pro-life Rep. Jason Conger of Bend.) I asked Connor why he gave up his Saturday, and he said he is “tired of living in a state with no respect for basic human rights or protection for the weakest among us.”
Brenn, Connor and millions of young people like them around the world are proving more than ever that this truly is the pro-life generation. They grew up with the ultrasound portraits of themselves before birth, the age of viability getting younger all the time, and the uncomfortable truth that their parents’ generation advocated for the killing of one third of their generation.
Be worried, Planned Parenthood. They will not be sidelined and they will not be ignored. They will abolish abortion, if it is the last thing they do.
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If you are a young person interested in getting involved with the pro-life movement, a great place to start is with Students for Life of America.
LifeNews Note: Liberty Pike is Oregon Right to Life’s director of communications. A graduate of Eastern Oregon University with her bachelor’s in business administration, Liberty has been a speaker for ORTL for five years. Her passion and concern are demonstrated as she educates and stimulates conversation about pro-life issues. She and her husband have a young daughter, and motherhood has further fueled her desire to protect the preborn and help women see their children as gifts, not crises. Follow her on Twitter or visit ORTL’s website.