In a recent sermon, Catholic Bishop Michael McGovern of the Belleville Diocese urge women to choose life even if they don’t want to have a baby. He visited St. Francis Xavier Church to hold a sermon on the Feast of Visitation of the Virgin Mary.
The biblical story, observed every year on May 31, tells of Mary’s visit to her cousin Elizabeth, both of whom became pregnant through unusual circumstances.
McGovern hoped to use the story to encourage women to keep their child and reassure them that they can get help from places like a church. McGovern says there needs to be better efforts to inform women of these resources.
“Whether its before a child is born, medical care, emotional support and then also basic resources when a woman has a baby whether its diapers, baby formula, baby clothes, furniture,” McGovern said.
The Illinois Catholic leader said that a respect for human life should occur even when a baby is conceived in rape or incest — that God can still have a plan for someone who is a victim of such a tragic circumstance.
The message from Tuesday’s sermon according to McGovern: God has a plan, even when a child is conceived through violence.
“”For a woman who… has conceived a child through something like violence… is an encouraging thing to do,” McGovern said. “We would encourage women to be courageous and welcome that life.”
The good news for women is that there are thousands of pregnancy centers nationwide ready to provide them actual help and support instead of abortion. For many mothers, the staff and volunteers at these organizations have encouraged and supported them through some of their most difficult struggles in life.
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Millions of mothers turn to pro-life pregnancy centers for help every year, whether it’s baby formula, cribs, car seats, diapers, pregnancy tests, counseling or emotional support. Approximately 3,000 pregnancy centers are located across the United States, offering free services to families in need.
Research by the Charlotte Lozier Institute found these centers served about 2 million people in 2019, providing more than 730,000 pregnancy tests, nearly half a million ultrasounds, 1.3 million packs of diapers and more than 2 million baby outfits, all for free.
Services typically include counseling and pregnancy tests, ultrasounds, parenting classes, maternity and baby clothes, diapers and car seats. Some also offer medical services including well-women exams and STD testing and treatment, along with parenting classes, job skill training, help signing up for government assistance and more. Many offer post-abortion counseling as well.
Anyone can find a pregnancy center for help by going to https://optionline.org/