Sophia Gavino knows what it’s like to be on the other side of the sidewalk at Planned Parenthood.
Once, when she was 15 years old, she went to the Walnut Creek Planned Parenthood in California and had her unborn baby aborted, according to Live Action News. Now, Gavino prays and reaches out to mothers in need outside the very same abortion facility where she once gave into despair.
“Lives are being changed because God hears the cries of His children,” she said.
In an interview with the pro-life news outlet, Gavino shared how she became involved in pro-life ministry after struggling with years of guilt from her own abortion.
At age 15, Gavino learned that she was pregnant, but she did not know who the father was. She said he may have been her boyfriend or he may have been a man who raped her at a party when she was drunk one night. Desperate, she took a friend’s advice and went to Planned Parenthood for an abortion.
“Because the abortion hadn’t been done right, I needed to go back into the room again to complete the procedure,” she told Live Action. “When I finally got home, I just wanted to be alone. I never stepped foot in that clinic again and I broke up with my boyfriend. Something in me died that day.”
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For years, Gavino said she struggled with regret. Even after she became a Christian seven years later, she said she still buried the guilt that she felt about aborting her child.
“Every once in a while our church would host a representative from the local pregnancy resource center,” she said. “I would cry a bit at times but then quickly pushed the pain deep inside.”
Then, she heard her pastor preach a pro-life sermon in 2016, one that changed her life forever. She told Live Action that the pastor urged Christians to “get off the sidelines and rush into the field” to battle against the abortion industry, just as David did with Goliath.
“When it came time for prayer, I lay face first on the ground and began to weep, asking God to forgive me for my sin of abortion and that if He saw fit, he would use me,” she continued. “It was as if the scab had been ripped off and it was time to heal.”
Gavino launched herself into pro-life advocacy, learning all that she could to help save unborn babies and support mothers in need. Eventually, she found Love Life, a pro-life sidewalk counseling ministry that partners with churches to provide safe havens to mothers in need, according to the report.
“When I heard the speaker … share that Love Life believes God has called his church to go out and take down ‘the giant’ of abortion centers in the land, I began to cry,” she told the pro-life news outlet.
She and her teenage son trained to be missionaries with Love Life, and now they volunteer regularly outside the Planned Parenthood where her unborn baby was aborted.
“Abortion is death and death is final. There is only hope in life,” she said. “God knits every baby in their mother’s wombs, and He has a plan and a purpose for every child.”
Gavino believes abortion is a spiritual battle, and only through God will abortions ever be completely eradicated. But because of pro-life advocates’ prayers, she said lives are being saved every day.
“For this sin of nearly 50 years of legalized abortion to be eradicated, it will be nothing short of a divine act of God,” she said. “Through prayer, we can save souls and babies. We see this happen every week in cities across the nation.”