Chad Judice is well-known amongst pro-lifers, as he has written and spoken about his son Elijah, who was diagnosed in 2008 with spina bifida while in the womb and was indeed born with the condition. Elijah is very much alive though, and even just recently started his first day of kindergarten.
It is not only Chad’s testimony of choosing life and rejecting the culture of death through abortion which is important and awe inspiring, though it is certainly is. But what is even more so is how Chad just recently shared his story, and Elijah’s, with New York Post. This is a media outlet which does not write exclusively on abortion, but still published Chad’s piece.
Despite writing for a not traditionally pro-life media, Chad certainly doesn’t hold back. He boldly describes how he and his wife, Ashley, who is a nurse caring for newborns in the ICU, bravely rejected abortion when it was offered to them, despite the overwhelming and frightening literature about the diagnosis which Ashley found. Chad describes how until the diagnosis, he “was also under the illusion that [he] was very much in control of [his] life.”
But even with the daunting and uncertain task ahead of them as parents, Chad and Ashley refused to be within the 80 percent of parents who chose abortion when their children are diagnoses with spina bifida. Chad explains they came to their decision since they “believe in the value of every human life from the moment of conception.” They also chose life “in a spirit in trust in God.”
And while their son was born with spina bifida, the opening in his spine was not as big as doctors said it would be, and after successful surgeries, he was home in less than a month.
Chad regards Eli as “God’s special gift to [his] family.” And while raising him has surely not always been an easy task, it does not take away from Elijah being a gift and a blessing, nor does it change how much he is loved. Chad and Ashley and his family were rewarded surely for their trust in God then when they chose life. Chad closes his piece by saying choosing life “was the right thing to do.”
Eli has affected others as well. Chad mentions that:
Hearing it, some pregnant mothers — four or five that I know of — have been moved to reject abortion. Several times, I’ve also seen Eli’s story rekindle the dormant faith of some — including men — drawing them into a life with more room for God and family.
One guy who had basically given up on God after many years in prison read my first book and was moved to tears, literally. Eli’s story broke that heart of stone, and the man prayed for Eli’s health and well-being as he recited The Lord’s Prayer. It was the first time he’d prayed in 30 years.
With his piece, Chad is proclaiming the sanctity of life with those who don’t hold such a view, or who may not believe in God. Chad is thus brave to do so. And it is worth hoping that by sharing such faith and a truly personal and heartfelt experiencing with respecting the sanctity of life, Eli can touch even more people out there who read about him.