Julie Wilkinson considered herself to be a Christian when she worked for late-term abortionist Warren Hern. And when she quit his Colorado abortion business a few years later, it wasn’t because she had a sudden change of heart.
But over time, Wilkinson (pictured center), a nurse, said God slowly worked a change in her heart, and she now believes that every baby deserves a right to life.
Speaking on the 40 Days for Life podcast this month, Wilkinson said she worked for Hern in the 1980s in Colorado. Almost four decades later, Hern still operates his abortion business, one of the few late-term abortion facilities in the United States where unborn babies may be legally aborted for any reason up to birth.
When she accepted the abortion job, Wilkinson said she was “naive.” She said Hern showed passion for his abortion work and almost treated killing unborn babies like a “noble cause.”
Her work included helping him abort unborn babies up to 24 weeks of pregnancy – including healthy babies with healthy moms, she said.
“I saw lots of things in the clinic but I put those things in the box,” she said. “It was bad enough that I knew I never wanted to talk to people about it. That’s why I kept it such a secret.”
She recalled one time when a “yuppie” couple wanting to give birth to just one child aborted twins after consulting with Hern. The reason, Wilkinson said, was because twins didn’t “fit their lifestyle.”
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She said the pregnancy was 16 weeks old when the twins were aborted.
“[Hern] sort of catered to them because anyone who had a higher level of education was something that appealed to him,” she said.
“He put on the kid gloves, showing them everything. Sadly, they did return and decided that twins weren’t going to fit their lifestyle. They had perfectly healthy twins aborted. We [nurses] were all pretty shocked. Even the counselors, you could tell, we were kind of shaking our heads because [the couple are] fine and they can afford this. But they decided not to.”
Wilkinson said she eventually quit because the work was emotionally draining. She said her views on abortion did not change in an instant but came about slowly and steadily as God worked in her life.
Part of the change began when she started working in a neonatal intensive care unit and later in labor and delivery where she cared for newborn babies and mothers, according to the report. Later, she said she found healing while connecting with other former abortion workers through Abby Johnson’s outreach And Then There Were None. The ministry helps abortion works quit their jobs, heal from the trauma of being involved in aborting babies and find meaningful employment.
Wilkinson said of the experience: “So to finally get to talk to somebody who wouldn’t have that flicker in their eyes that made me feel even worse about myself was a big deal. Because then I could start building the foundation with connections and relationships.”
Though she still struggles with guilt, she said she knows that God is blessing her for speaking out for life. Recently, she has been sharing her story publicly to be a voice for unborn babies.
“I know I am forgiven by God but it’s still hard to take that burden off your back,” Wilkinson said. “God just unloads blessings when we follow His way. It’s too bad it took me so many years to figure out.”