Dear, Wonderful Friends of Life,
Each and every summer, I try to pack in as many showers as I can, so that our homeschool year has a bit more flexibility. This summer, Truth & Mercy lavishly showered SEVEN moms who chose life in front of Charlotte’s abortion clinics. These moms were each met by heroic, gentle Christians who proclaim God’s truth and who offer genuine help and hope to the abortion bound. I encourage each of you to spend some time in front of an abortion clinic in your area. Charlotte has four. I can help you connect with a prolife group in your area if you contact me. Based in the Charlotte area , Cities4Life.org is an excellent ministry and they are mobilizing Christians all over the country to protect the unborn, provide for their families and pray for an end to the slaughter. You can simply pray. You can hold a sign, and, if you get some training, you can approach the men and women and sidewalk counsel. Nowhere in our society is the line of demarcation more clearly drawn than in front of a killing center. There’s life on one side. Death on the other. Light on one side. Darkness on the other. Truth on one side. Lies on the other. Our culture’s mantra is “My body. My rights. My choice.” Contrastingly, God Himself proclaims, “You are not your own. You were bought with a price.” All the moms in the following stories had appointments to abort their unborn children. They were met with a smile, a word of Truth and an offer of help….and their babies are alive today. It’s really not that complicated!
Best news first! Six babies have been born. I reported on the first three moms, their stories and their showers in my last report. The last three babies and moms stories are told below in the “shower section”.
1) Aideis and Erick, now married, had their baby boy, William, on April 28. He weighed 9lb 15oz and was 21.5″ long. Here’s a photo of the the big boy!
2) Two days later, Grace had her son, Moses, on April 30. He weighed 7lb 8oz. Dr. Matt Harrison provided all of her pre-natal care and delivery for free. He is a remarkable servant and I’m honored to be his friend. He shared with me that Grace, upon the birth of Moses, kept repeating, “Thank You, Jesus! Thank You, Jesus!” I completely agree! Back in May, I was able to visit her and take these photos:
3) Shaniqua delivered little London Olivia, who weighed 6lb 5oz, on June 4. Disappointedly, she is now living with her boyfriend, Josh. I can’t express how this saddens my heart. At Shaniqua’s shower, Lisa Metzger and I both cautioned her about this and we emphasized God’s plan and purposes for purity. Shaniqua tells me they plan to marry next year…but we all know that’s not the order God would ordain. We can, however, rejoice that this beautiful baby girl is now safe and loved and cared for. Shaniqua genuinely loves motherhood and oozes joy over the phone! She is still working on passing the skills test so she can become a Certified Nursing Assistant. She passed the written portion, but is having trouble with the skills portion. Truth & Mercy, thanks to you, paid for her class and Cities4Life paid for her test. Of course, she still has to take the skills test again. She is paying for that re-take. Here’s little London:
4) On June 25, Michelle delivered little Hazel Marie via C-section. She weighed just shy of 6lbs. Read her complete story below, but for now, gaze upon Hazel’s loveliness:
5) Leticia gave birth to Bridget on July 3. She weighed in a 7lb 11oz. I told her story in my last update. Recently, Eliana Smith and I visited her and I snapped a few pictures. The photo of her in the red dress was taken professionally at the hospital. Bridgett is wearing a doll’s dress that belongs to her four-year old sister:
6) Graciana had her baby girl, Victoria, on July 3 also! She weighed 8lb 3oz. Two saved baby girls were born the very same day! Eliana Smith was instrumental in both of these stories, meeting both of these mamas at the Latrobe abortion clinic. Here’s little Victoria and the full story is told below:
Before I tell you about the seven showers I did this summer, please be reminded of what most moms receive. The gift list varies a bit, depending on their specific needs and their space limitations, but here’s the basic line up: crib (or pack-n-play), mattress, bedding set, car seat, stroller, swing (or bouncy seat), exersaucer, tub, blankets, hooded towels, washcloths, snuggly wrap, bottles, bottle brush, formula, forks, spoons, bibs, toys, baby care books, baby name book, pacifiers, medical kit, hangers, diaper bag, wipe warmer, TWO years of clothing from 0-24 months (about 10-12 outfits in each size range), and starter amounts of diapers, wipes, and toiletry items (baby wash, lotion, powder, rash ointment, etc.) Of course, every mom gets a Bible and Gospel materials!
Depending on my supplies and her space, the mom might also get a highchair, a changing table, a breast pump, sound monitor, potty seat, and more. You can visualize this huge amount of gifts. Everything is clean and in excellent condition and beautifully presented. I shower lavishly because God’s grace is lavish. The gifts express His love to these mamas and I want His love to be abundantly expressed. The goal is that the gifts would soften the mother’s heart and prepare her to receive the Gospel over lunch. Thank you for your generosity that makes these amazing showers possible. I tell each mom that the gifts are from YOU – Christians who are concerned and desire to help moms choose life and care for their children. It often moves a mom to tears to realize that strangers care for her. It’s a significant moment.
The seven summer showers YOU have provided:
1) Michelle’s shower was May 24. Jennifer Graves had met her at the Latrobe Street abortuary back in January. She was planning to abort this, her 5th baby, but Jennifer heroically intervened by initiating a conversation, offering help, taking her to lunch to extend the conversation, and even taking her to the Cabarrus County Pregnancy Resource Center that same day, where she received a free, emergency ultrasound by nurse Courtney Parks. Courtney came in on her day off, driving a long distance to serve Michelle and hopefully, save her baby’s fragile life. Her baby put on quite an active show and it melted Michelle’s heart like wax. She was 15-weeks pregnant at that time. Jennifer served Michelle faithfully throughout her pregnancy. Dr. Matt Harrison saw her one time and provided prenatal care, then she switched to a more local doctor. She required some very extensive dental surgery a few months ago and Jennifer served her well, driving her to her appointments. Jennifer arranged the care through Carolina Center for Oral Health and the surgeon and his assistant turned out to be Christians! They prayed with her, in Jesus’s name, and had compassion on her financial situation. Cities4Life paid for her 3-D ultrasound, where she found out her baby was a girl…just as she had hoped! Recently, she had a need for school uniforms, shoes and supplies for her children. These needs were all met through generous and compassionate Christians in the Cities4Life sphere, and also Steele Creek Church of Charlotte, where she has been now twice. She even had opportunity to meet Pastor Kelvin Smith, who rejoiced when he learned her story of choosing life. God has shown Himself so clearly and kindly to Michelle.
Michelle, age 24, began a new job at Dunkin Donuts this week – first shift! This is an improvement from her 3rd shift McDonald’s job. She has ambition to start her own cleaning business. I pray she succeeds!
On the day of the shower, Jennifer met me at Michelle’s house and Michelle was amazed by all the beautiful gifts. She went through everything, then we went to lunch at Amelie’s. Delicious! We had a wonderful Gospel conversation and she heard God’s Truth clearly. I pray that it will bear much fruit. We talked a great deal about her marrying longtime boyfriend, Pablo, who is father to all five children. By God’s enabling grace, I always broach this uncomfortable issue, regardless of the awkwardness.
She had her baby, Hazel Marie, on June 25! Here’s Michelle, at her shower. Hazel’s picture is above.
2) Graciana’s shower was in early June. I got all her gifts ready and Eliana Smith delivered them. Graciana is married to her husband Roman. They regularly attend church and participate in a Bible study. They have five other children and were pressured to abort this baby because of financial reasons and the challenges of raising so many young children. They live in a small, two bedroom trailer. Thankfully, Eliana was at the abortion clinic and only had to offer a word of Truth to them. They knew their plans were wrong. They quickly repented and firmly chose life. Sometimes, all it takes is just one person to say, “Don’t do this. You know it’s wrong. God is speaking to your conscience. We can help.” Over my 25 years in prolife ministry, thousands of babies in Charlotte have been saved by this grace-filled approach. Graciana and Roman were so grateful for the gifts and they clearly saw God’s love and care for them on display! Here they are at their shower.
3) Kayla is almost 21 and has a lengthy sexual history. Her first child is the adorable little Layla, now 2. She miscarried the second one and aborted a third at Latrobe. She met Lisa Metzger and Charlene Geisler back in January when she was newly pregnant with this, her fourth child. Upon seeing the small group of Christians and their signs and hearing their pleas, Kayla’s heart, and her mother’s, softened enough to agree to enter the mobile RV unit for an ultrasound, performed by nurse Sherry Desloge. While waiting her turn, they listened to Biblical counsel and they viewed the beautiful fetal models, which were the turning point for their hearts. Once her baby was on the ultrasound screen, dancing all around her womb, her heart broke and she firmly chose life. Even grandma Barbie took pictures of the screen and rejoiced. A poor relationship with the baby’s father was the driving factor for the abortion. Kayla did not want him in her life and, of course, a baby complicates that immensely. At this point, however, he doesn’t seem interested at all.
Truth & Mercy showered her on June 24. Lisa met me at her home in Gastonia. Her mother was there, too, and her daughter, Layla. I, of course, took some toys for adorable Layla and she was so interested and involved with them that she played contentedly while we adults talked and Kayla opened all the beautiful and abundant gifts.
After the gifts, Kayla, Barbie, Lisa and I, along with little Layla, went to lunch. This is a purposeful time, as I am intent on sharing the Gospel in a clear way. Like most Americans, they professed to be Christians, but there is a clear disconnect between her stated beliefs and her behavior. I reiterated what Jesus said in Scripture, “If you love Me, you’ll obey Me.” John 14:15
4) Veronica’s shower was held on July 2. Vasti Geddes met Veronica at the Hebron Road abortion clinic and gave her a free ultrasound in the mobile unit. Vasti and Veronica have a history, as Vasti attempted to save a previous child Veronica aborted last year. Because she learned the hard way that abortion doesn’t solve problems, it only make them worse, she clearly chose life this time. Angela Hernandez, another volunteer from the Charlotte Pregnancy Resource Center has been helping Veronica in many ways, including driving her to OB appointments with Dr. Matt Harrison, way out in Salisbury. Angela also came to the shower and translated all the conversations for us. What a blessing! She is very talented in this way and she helped me immensely. This is baby #7 for Veronica and the man she calls her “husband”. This has become commonplace, for women to call men their “husband” when they are not truly married. It’s odd, but very prevalent in the Hispanic community. At her shower on July 2, I asked her directly if she was truly, legally married. They are not. Once again, God gave me the awkward opportunity to teach His truth. She was blessed and happy by all the gifts. Truly, her reason to abort would have been financial…but those reasons were waylaid somewhat by your generosity. When she realized how much clothing I had given her, she stated her need for a dresser…a BIG one! Friends from my church, CrossWay Community Church, generously donated a huge dresser and I delivered it last week. She and her boyfriend, Jose, were truly grateful. They saw the Gospel in deed and she certainly heard it in word at her shower. Veronica is expecting a girl in September, and plans to name her Allison Jasmine.
5) Jameka was next. She went to the Latrobe abortion clinic not once, not twice, but three times. The first time, she pulled in, turned around and pulled back out. She couldn’t do it. The second time, she was met by Tom and Carolyn Barry and Jack Asher. As she drove down the road crying, they got her to stop her car and listen to God’s Truth. Carolyn asked her to enter the mobile RV unit that is provided by the Monroe Pregnancy HELP Center. Nurse Courtney gave her an ultrasound and God did the rest. Her baby measured 12 weeks gestation. She had a change of heart and left, still pregnant. Unbeknownst to any of us until we were talking at her shower, she had returned about three weeks later, once again intent on aborting. This often happens to women. They go back home and face “life” only to have fear enter their hearts. They are very abortion vulnerable. Add to that the fact that this particular abortion clinic makes repeated phones calls to them, hard selling their services, reminding them that the clock is ticking and each day and week that passes means a higher priced abortion. Their behavior is sickening. They aggressively market their product to vulnerable women. Well, she returned. This time she went in, paid, changed into a gown, and had blood work done. She couldn’t go through with it, though, and got dressed, asked for a refund (which they give, but not without a fight) and she left.
This is the 4th baby for Jameka and her live-in boyfriend, Karey. On July 19, Carolyn hosted the shower at her home and prepared a lovely dinner for us all. Jameka came with her sister, Janelle. Courtney also attended. We had a lively and robust Gospel conversation over dinner. She and her sister were raised in a Pentecostal Holiness church and she has some faint Scripture memory, but it was pretty tangled in her mind. She clearly understands that she is a sinner, and her sister does, too. I don’t usually have many moms who freely and honestly admit their sin. Usually, I have to graciously show them their sin. Not so with Jameka and Janelle. I think their church background laid that foundation. They both made clear choices, though, to stay in sin. Sadly, the appeal of their sin was too strong. Carolyn and I both believe there is more going on with their sin than they admitted. We think the layers are far deeper…but God’s Word and love can go deeper than the deepest sin. Tom came home in time to add another layer on top. We prayed with them, took some pictures, and loaded up her van in the rain. Join me in praying for the Holy Spirit to penetrate through everything that holds itself up against the knowledge of Christ. On the practical side, she loved all the gifts you provided for her baby boy, who is due August 16. She’s considering naming him Kingston. Tom and Carolyn are with Jameka in the second photo:
6) Wendy’s shower was next. Wendy, too, has a history with us pro-lifers. Katherine Hearn met her a few years back when she came to the Latrobe clinic for a post abortion follow up appointment. She spoke with Katherine, whose heart aches for post abortive women, and she came to see the wrongness of her choice. She had already had terrible depression and nightmares. Katherine helped her to see why she was experiencing these things and also WHO to turn to. They established a friendship right away. When Wendy became pregnant again a few months later, she knew what to do. She contacted Katherine. I showered her, shared the Gospel with her, and she gave birth to baby Gabriel almost three years ago. Fast forward three years. Wendy became pregnant again and she again went to the Latrobe clinic. This time she met Lisa Metzger and others. She is a soft hearted young lady, who genuinely wants to do the right thing. She now has five children…and is pregnant with #6. The pressures were immense. She is single. Her health is concerning. She had already used Plan B, the day after unprotected sex, but it failed to kill the baby. She felt desperate. She felt as if she was sinking deeper and deeper, all caused by her own behavior. She left the abortion clinic with Lisa’s number and they remained in contact. She told Lisa she knew me and Katherine. All three of us reached out to Wendy and pleaded for life and offered all kinds of help, including adoption. Wendy literally teetered between life and death for many weeks. She made two more appointments at the clinic, but did not go through with them. We were all praying for her, having no assurance she would choose life. Communication fell off and we feared the worse. Little did we know that God was giving her dreams…more nightmares, to be exact. God did a work in her heart and she came down on the side of life. I showered her, with Katherine, too, on July 24. Once again, we had a long, long Gospel conversation over dinner – until 10pm. She is so precious. So tender. So sweet. Such a hard worker. Such a wonderful mother. Really. You should meet her children. We encouraged her to attend Steele Creek Church because they have Spanish service and her boyfriend Jamie, speaks only Spanish. Like always, I left her with a Bible, a video titled 180 – The Movie, and other Gospel materials. Wendy is expecting a girl in early October, and she has no idea what to name her! Here is gorgeous Wendy:
7) Lastly, I showered Adriana last Saturday, July 26. Adriana met Russell Justice at the Hebron abortion clinic on January 22, the 41st anniversary of Roe V Wade. She had been there the day before to get her “counseling” and was returning for the actual abortion. Thankfully, they seem to be submitting to the new 24 hour waiting period law now in affect. In her counseling session with them the day before, they told her that her pregnancy was “nothing”, just a “string”. When she met Russell, he encouraged her to get a free ultrasound at the Charlotte Pregnancy Resource Center’s mobile unit, parked in front. Thankfully, she agreed. Inside, she met Vasti Geddes, the nurse. When her “string” had an audible heartbeat, she was shocked and immediately chose life. At her shower, I had the opportunity to get to know her and hear her story. She has suffered much in her 34 years of life. This is her third baby, all from different men. The second baby’s father threatened her and her then 5 year old son, if she didn’t abort. She refused and fled in fear. She slept in a car and she and her son went hungry for an extended period. It took a long time to get back on her feet. Consequently, when she became pregnant with this baby, she feared the same thing happening. Thankfully, God used that sonogram and audible heartbeat to change her own heart.
I showered her lavishly and abundantly, thanks to you T&M supporters! I took her, her friend Katie, and Vasti out to lunch. We had a fruitful conversation about the Lord and His claims on our lives. She and her friend admitted they had never heard anything quite like it. They speak only Spanish and Vasti did a phenomenal job translating everything that was spoken that day. These situations can be so awkward and clumsy, but Vasti made it smooth and easy. She is a gift! Adrianna plans to name her baby girl Kasey. She is due in mid-September.
After these seven showers, I am desperate for infant carrier car seats.
1) Fatima is a Muslim college student I showered last fall and her mother, Massiami, and I have had quite a bit of contact. Peculiarly, with age, I now seem to identify more with the grandmothers of the saved babies! Funny, what age will do. Anyhow, Massiami came to my church on Resurrection Sunday and brought little Brandon, her saved grandson. I know she heard Biblical truth that day and we’ve talked a great deal about the Gospel. It was such a thrill to hold little Brandon and worship the living Savior! Here’s a photo of little Brandon who was four months at that time:
2) You may remember Shyann, who had her baby Jaylen last September. She came to my church a couple of months ago and way able to meet Armit and Mary Sue Mundorf, who have been sending her monthly financial support for the last year. They have committed to continue the support until she graduates high school this December. They are such an amazingly generous couple, and they also support the ministry prayerfully. I truly feel my arms lifted when I have a shower because they are so faithful to pray. Here is a new photo of Jaylen, who is 10-months old now.
3) A few days ago, Mayra, one of my all-time favorite moms, came with her dad and sister to visit me and my daughter. She had fantastic news of being accepted at Johnson C. Smith University with a partial scholarship! I am so proud of her. She is the hardest working mom I know. Here is a photo of little Isabella, who is now 18-months old. As you look at this photo, try to imagine the joyful rendition of “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” that she sang with her face between the stair rails. Pure delight!
A few other news items:
Last year, Cross Roads Baptist Church in East Bend, NC somehow found out about Truth & Mercy and recently held their SECOND collection drive for the ministry. Below are some pictures of the gifts they made and purchased. Make special note of the adorable diaper tricycle that Robin Gilley created! I can’t wait to give that away at my next shower in September! Thank you to Wayne and Kathy Gentry! (I’m praying for your complete healing, Kathy! Love you!) I show you this to give you ideas how you and your church can bless moms!
My daughter turned 16 back in June and we had a big party to celebrate! She asked her friends to bring donations for Truth & Mercy instead of gifts for her. I’m so amazed by the generosity of her teenage friends and their parents! Truth & Mercy received many wonderful gifts. I am so grateful! y prayer is that young people will catch the vision for prolife work. The baton will need to be passed to you. I pray you realize that this is YOUR generation being snuffed out. You have survived Roe V Wade, but I pray Roe V Wade will NOT survive you. Thank you all…and you know who you are! You rock!
I want to send a hearty thank you to Cindy Holleman, who has faithfully managed the Truth & Mercy clothing for several years. She does a fantastic job and sacrifices so much, including her attic, to do it. She is a rock and I know I can rely upon her. She handles literally several thousand articles of baby clothes each and every year. Thank you, Cindy!
Thanks, also, to Lisa DeCoste and Sarah West, who have sorted loads of baby clothing for me. Love you two!
Thanks, especially, to all of you who faithfully and generously give baby items and financial gifts. I can’t adequately express my gratitude and respect. Thank you. I stand in amazement as things pour through my door. I fully realize that you trust me to make right decisions and use the donations efficiently and effectively. It’s a burden I do not take lightly. I work to earn your trust.
For God’s great fame,
I constantly collect baby items of all types. Email me at TruthMercyLife@aol.com or contact me here and we can work out a collection plan if you have something to donate. Financial donations can be made here through PayPal or checks can be made out to Truth & Mercy and mailed to 4803 Crownvista Drive, Charlotte NC 28269.
Please know that donations are NOT tax deductible.
As always, please refrain from posting any names or photos on social media sites. I work hard to develop relationships with these moms and I carefully describe how I intend to use their stories, names and photos. Please don’t be an agent who would destroy that trust and hard-won bond. Feel free to forward this email in its entirety to your friends, though. Just don’t use social media. Thank you for understanding.