Dear Friends of Life:
Autumn. The fresh, crisp, cool air. The long shadows. I always feel especially loved by the Lord when He transforms my world into my favorite warm hues of red, orange, yellow, and gold. Fall also marks a special anniversary for me – my immersion into prolife ministry, which began in October 1988. It changed my life forever. As I mark 29 years of ministry, I ponder God’s faithfulness and goodness – and the generosity of ministry supporters who believe in the mission and equip me for the work. I could not do it without you. Saying “thank you” seems too small and too inadequate, especially when my heart is so full. Please also accept a host of “thank yous” from 1,500+ moms and 1,500+ babies, many of whom are now adults, having children of their own. The second generation of life has begun!
As I reflect on this 29th anniversary, I will recount the great works of the Lord. He has moved in many hearts and lives. My last report was sent way back in April, so I have a LOT of catching up to do!
I know this is long, but I trust it will be encouraging and uplifting. Please read
to the end so that you can be made aware of Truth & Mercy’s uncertain future. My world shook about 3 months ago and the future of Truth & Mercy is at stake. If you are pressed for time right now, feel free to skip over the 15 compelling stories, but please don’t miss the critical information I share at the end.
1) I begin with Evelyn’s story. I failed to report her shower and her baby last time, so let me first correct that oversight. Evelyn was a young Hispanic woman with two children, aged 3 and 1, when she came to the abortion clinic, pregnant with number three. She was right on the cusp on the clinic’s gestational cut off, but we know without a doubt that they often fudge the baby’s size and abort past 20 weeks. By God’s divine providence, we had a Spanish-speaking sidewalk counselor on the scene, but not just any Spanish-speaking counselor. God used Priscilla Bower, a homeschooled teen, to carry out His divine appointment. I’ve known Priscilla for many years and have seen her grow up in my church. When I heard of her involvement in the saving of Evelyn’s little baby boy, I was delighted to promise a shower! And shower her we did. But first, Monroe HELP Center set up and provided her with FREE medical care through Dr. Matthew Harrison. I prepared a van load of baby gifts for Evelyn and met Priscilla and her mother – my sweet friend, Sarah – at Evelyn’s home back in November 2016. Priscilla was faithful to translate everything spoken that day. Evelyn was grateful for the gifts, including toys and clothes for her toddlers. Evelyn had her son, Isaac, December 30.
2) My April report detailed Cynthia’s shower,
so I won’t go into it here, but she had her baby
boy, Leo, on May 12.
3) My last email also reported on DeAndra’s shower,
so I’ll just give you the latest news. Last May, she graduated
from UNCC with a degree in Engineering and her baby girl,
Riley Naomi, was born June 25. In August, she moved to
begin her first job in New Bern, NC. Success all around!
4) My next story is a bit unusual. A friend of mine, who lives and works at Wears Valley Ranch in Tennessee, a Christian home for children, works with a young couple who were expecting their first child. Being Christian ministers, they lacked funds to purchase necessary baby items and my friend reached out to me for help. My friend offered to pay for the shipping, so I put my best packing skills to use and maximized every square inch to send a huge box of size 0-3 clothing, a baby care book, tub, toiletries, diapers, blankets and bottles. Little Carter was born June 10 to very thankful parents, Danielle and Scott.
5) Vicky Kaseorg, sidewalk counselor extraordinaire, met Rebecca at the abortion clinic in March. Rebecca was pregnant, but not there for an abortion. A neighbor in her housing project – which is strategically and intentionally less than a mile from the abortion clinic – asked her for a ride that morning; however, she didn’t say exactly where she needed to go. She said only that she had an “appointment”. When Rebecca pulled up and surmised the scene, she immediately regretted her involvement and began pleading for the life of her neighbor’s child. Nequa, her neighbor, ignored her pleas and went inside. Rebecca didn’t give up. She continually texted her and offered all manner of help, including the stunning offer of raising the child, even though she, herself, was dirt poor with three children and #4 on the way. The friend did, at one point, agree to come out of the clinic and go aboard the waiting mobile unit for a pregnancy test and an ultrasound. Rebecca met her on the porch of the clinic, so as to walk with her across the clinic property and onto the RV. (I interrupt story to ask you to please make sure you’ve taken any necessary blood pressure meds.) Once on the porch, the “pro-choice” folks told Nequa that our folks would hold her hostage if she went on the RV…and…that if she went on the RV, clinic personnel would not allow her to return to the abortion clinic. How’s THAT for “choice”? That was enough to frighten Nequa back into the clinic to destroy her child. With heaviness of heart, Rebecca gathered herself to go home. The story doesn’t end there, though. Vicky called me from the sidewalk to ask if I would consider doing a shower for Rebecca, in honor of her sacrificial offer to adopt and raise Nequa’s child. Because of your generosity, I was thrilled to be able to say, “YES!” Love Life Charlotte got involved and connected Rebecca to a wonderful mentor, Beth Pearson, a friend I hadn’t seen in several years! What a delight it was to shower Rebecca with lavish gifts for her new baby, and for her other three young children. A mom I met and showered many years ago had recently donated a large amount of her daughter’s clothing and shoes. Normally, I don’t accept donations of those big girl sizes, but I knew that Rebecca could likely use it all. I had no expectation that anything might fit right now; it was a long term need that I sought to meet. Imagine my delight when the little 2- and 3-year old girls reached in the bag and each pulled out a sparkly pair of shoes and slipped them on for a perfect fit! I felt like we were in a live production of Cinderella! They were thrilled! I also had clothes and toys for her 4-year old son. After the gifts were opened, Beth, Vicky, and I took Rebecca out for dinner and an intentional time of sharing the Gospel, complete with message on sexual purity (as always). She received it well and asked good, thoughtful questions. Caliana Grace was born on August 7 after a super quick 1.5 hour labor and she’s posing here in her cute Truth & Mercy clothes and hat.
6) Sidewalk counselor Anna Misko met Dania and her boyfriend, Dakota, at the Latrobe Drive abortion center. Previously, they had been to the clinic on Wendover Drive, but they would not abort past 14 weeks. They sent her to Latrobe, where they abort up to 20 weeks, but God orchestrated a divine intervention. They met Anna, who pleaded for life and offered hope and help in the name of Jesus. She connected them with Dr. Harrison at Monroe HELP, who provided free medical care. Dania and Dakota were living in a hotel. Anna spoke to them about sexual purity and marriage and THEY GOT MARRIED! They bounced around a bit with housing but are now on track. I showered her and have since added more gifts as her housing space has grown and stabalized. Kamora Scarlett was born July 1, weighing 7lb 1oz and measuring 20”.
7) Kelly & Leo are their American names, but they are from Vietnam. Kelly understands almost no English at all, but Leo communicates fairly well. They are a humble, tender, young married couple who came to the Latrobe Drive abortion clinic in February, very early in her pregnancy. At the time, their daughter, Ellie, was 3, and their son, Nam, was 9-months. Knowing the language barrier, the clinic had arranged a professional interpreter to be at their appointment. The interpreter didn’t know she was scheduled to work at an abortion clinic; she only had an address. She is a pro-life Catholic. Leo and Kelly arrived first and were met by Vicky on the sidewalk. Need I say more? Vicky persuaded them to come aboard the mobile unit for counseling, plus a pregnancy test, and an ultrasound by the skilled nurse, Sherry Desloge. Meanwhile, the translator, Juliet, arrived and was more than willing — in fact she was eager — to board the RV and help translate there instead of in the abortion clinic! What divine providence! They chose LIFE. I had their shower on June 27 and invited Juliet, the translator, as well. I filled their small home with gifts that delighted them. Their young children were there and we all had a wonderful time. Weeks before, I had ordered a Vietnamese/English Bible for them, and I boned up on Buddhism, which they professed. Over traditional Vietnamese dessert, Vicky and I had a great Gospel conversation with them, and the Lord helped us dispel several inconsistencies and fallacies within Buddhism. We were able to give them the name of a good church with a Vietnamese congregation, and I also gave them some other Vietnamese Gospel materials to read. Leo, in particular, is very close to trusting Christ as Lord and Savior. Kelly is more reluctant and more attached to her traditions, including ancestor worship, as she finds comfort in them while being so far from her native home. This ministry has afforded me amazing opportunities to meet and serve people from five different continents. Their stories are incredible. Many have come as refugees fleeing extreme hardship. It’s an honor to know them and serve them as they learn to find their place here. They named their son Hao Thien (pronounced How-Teen), which means Good Heaven/Sky. He was born October 8, weighing 7lb 3oz, and I just have to say, he’s adorable!
8) Mama S was next in my lineup. Even still, I’ve never met her, and I worked only through her Love Life mentor, Katherine Buehler, who came to my home to pick up the prepared gifts for S. Because of your generosity, she received a bassinet, sheets, tub, 0-3 and 3-6 month clothing, diapers, wipes, bottles, blankets, and formula. She already had a car seat and a stroller. Katherine tells me S was very appreciative and grateful for the gifts and she graciously has allowed me to show you her picture and her baby’s picture. Punctually, baby girl Parker was born right on her due date, July 11, weighing 6lb 12oz and measuring 20.5”.
9) My next shower was for a favorite! You should know Mayra well if you’ve followed Truth & Mercy for a few years. I first met Mayra about 5 years ago, when she was pregnant with Isabella and in high school. She and her parents turned from their initial abortion plans when they learned of hope and help offered by Dr. Matt Harrison, who provided free medical care for Mayra and Isabella. Truth and Mercy showered her lavishly – including a full suite of furniture. I was privileged and honored to witness the birth of Isabella January 24, 2013. Never have I met such a hard working young mom. She even graduated early with a scholarship to Central Piedmont Community College, where she attended for several semesters…but she got sidetracked…again. I was so very disappointed, but I kept loving her and pointing her to Jesus. I showered her again and she gave birth to little Daniel in January of 2015. Mayra married her sweetheart, the father of Daniel and the man who is fathering Isabella. Victor is a wonderful young man and I think very highly of him. He’s become a friend, too. On July 18, they had baby #3, Manuel. I showered them shortly before that date, when they purchased their first home and got settled in! I’m so proud of these two and their work ethic. Mayra now professes Christ as Lord and Savior and I could not be happier. This has come full circle. The saving of a child’s life is cause for jubilation, but the saving of a soul for eternity is beyond description! She is exhibiting great fruit. You should also know that it was Mayra who provided the clothing for Rebecca’s two older girls in story #5. The clothing used to be Isabella’s!
10) Last Spring, Hayleigh came to the abortion clinic highly conflicted and she boarded the HELP mobile unit for a pregnancy test and ultrasound. She already had a 1-year old daughter with her live-in boyfriend, Michael, and they were experiencing some serious financial difficulties. When she saw her active baby on the screen and read through the booklet showing in utero babies two weeks old and up, she agreed that abortion at any stage would be wrong and “nothing compared to life”. I took Vicky, Hayleigh’s sidewalk counselor, to the shower which was held in their home on August 6. We had an amazing time together. Vicky and I came away saying that we just want to hang out with this couple. They are smart, engaging, and a lot of fun to be with. We also met Michael’s mom and got to hear her amazing story of escaping religious persecution as Catholics in Lebanon. They fled to the US as refugees when Michael, now 30, was just 4-years old. (Through this ministry, I am privileged to meet such fascinating people from all over the globe!) God gave us divine opportunity to share the Gospel in a very direct and purposeful way. We could see lightbulbs clicking on as understanding was coming to them. We also talked about sexual purity. We always deliver that mail, unpopular as it is. The second half of the Great Commission is to “teach them to obey all that I have commanded” so we simply must discuss that. They do want to get married eventually. They genuinely love each other and they are a great match. They gave the very typical reason for not marrying right away: money. They want to have a nice wedding. As always, I advised them to marry NOW and save money for a fancy anniversary party. Obeying the Lord is critical. Elaborate weddings are not. Little Porter was born on October 10 weighing 7lb 12 oz.
11) Vicky met Hannah at the clinic last May. Believe it or not, Hannah drove to the Latrobe Drive abortion clinic THREE times – all the way from the Myrtle Beach area — about 4.5 hours each way. Before that, she had driven to a clinic in Fayetteville twice, which was a 2-hour drive each way. That amounts to FIVE different attempts to abort and 31 hours of driving, seeking, and searching for answers. She also had made a trip to Charlotte to visit the Pregnancy Resource Center — so make that 40 hours of driving. It is an understatement to say that Hannah was conflicted. She was conflicted because she is a genuine believer and she knew abortion was wrong. Yet she was in a most difficult place. She did not want to disappoint her loving, Christian mother. She dreaded telling her. On her third and final trip to Latrobe, she agreed to board the HELP mobile unit with Vicky and nurse, Kelly Byrum, for a free ultrasound. When she saw her beautiful baby on the monitor, she melted and realized that her baby’s value does not change based on her circumstances. She chose life for her son and she just passed her due date of November 7. Truth & Mercy lavishly showered her in early August. She and her parents drove from Myrtle Beach (another trip!) in a big pick-up truck so they could get the huge amount of gifts home. My church let me hold the shower there, and my son, Nathan, and a few of his friends, Stephen, Gabe, and Joey, helped to load the truck with the gifts after the shower. We had a wonderful time recounting the Lord’s goodness. Before the shower, I knew everyone had professed to be Christians, but I did not accept that as a fact until I was able to have a great conversation with them. I never take a profession of faith at face value. I simply see too many false converts to accede to that. I’m not easy to convince, but I know now these family members are genuine believers. Her step dad is even a completed/Messianic Jew! We had a refreshing time in the Lord and they were so very grateful for the help and support they have received. Pray for Hannah’s safe delivery of her baby boy (possibly to be named Grayson or Asher) due any second!
12) Nyishia came to the Latrobe clinic at 31-weeks. We were all – including her — shocked. She has four other children and lives in the nearby Grier Heights public housing area that abuts the abortion clinic property. (BTW, this is no accident. Abortion clinics are ALWAYS situated near impoverished areas. Matter of fact, TWO Charlotte clinics are on either side of Grier Heights. They make a “sandwich” of this targeted area.) The abortion clinic is not licensed to abort that late in a pregnancy, but they can and do refer such late term patients to a clinic in Atlanta. Nyishia, however, boarded the HELP mobile unit for an ultrasound with Kelly Bynum and counseling with Vicky. She chose life and I promised to do a shower in two weeks’ time. On August 19, there was a murder in broad daylight in her neighborhood. Also, nationally during this time, much racial strife, tension and yes, violence, was happening across the country, including Charlottesville. Vicky and I were concerned, but we placed our trust in the Lord and asked Him to go before us. He not only made our way smooth — He gave us a beautiful stage and platform upon which to display His goodness to the residents of this battle-weary neighborhood. We arrived in my packed van and proceeded to make multiple trips from the parking lot into Nyishia’s apartment with gifts. Neighbors were outside and noticed. They literally cheered us on. Many followed us into Nyishia’s home to find out what was going on. They were delighted to learn of the ministry and the ways that God was caring for Nyishia and meeting her practical needs. As she opened gift after gift for the next hour and a half, about a dozen people popped in an out asking questions. Nysishia wept with relief and joy over the quick and abundant provision. We then left with Nyishia to take her to dinner and the crowd cheered us again. They were pumped with excitement and they were planning a surprise for Nyishia upon her return. We went to dinner and shared the Gospel with Nyishia and she was very receptive. She is a deep thinker and wanted to read the materials I left with her. When I took her back home, my van was met with excited cheers. Her neighbors had set up her nursery with all the equipment and supplies that Truth & Mercy had given her. What an amazing God we serve. Baby girl Peyton was born October 15.
13) This next story is close to my heart. I don’t often get to the abortion clinic these days to sidewalk counsel, but my heart is there. The shower portion of the ministry keeps me so busy that I rarely get a chance to go. However, I was there on a cold March morning for a divine appointment. Tashiana reports that she tried to ignore me as she pulled up and walked inside, but when I called out, “Your baby’s heart was beating before you suspected you were pregnant and missed your first period” her heart was pierced. She didn’t stay in the clinic very long. She came out and pulled over to talk with me near the curb. Kathy Pavkovic joined me and we talked and prayed with Tashiana. She chose life and Kathy and I drove to Jonesville SC for her shower in September. We met her mother and her two daughters. We shared the Gospel with her and through your generous giving, her needs were abundantly met. I even had gifts to give her two daughters. Baby girl Armani was born October 6, weighing 6lb 14oz.
14) Faithful Vicky Kaseorg met Portiah back in June. Upset by her mother who stopped talking to her because of her pregnancy, Portiah sought abortion. She drove about 2.5 hours from Aiken SC. She had told her aunt her plans. Her aunt, a Christian, took the matter to the Throne of Grace and as Aunt Angela prayed, God moved and assembled a group of gentle Christian giants to intervene in front of A Preferred Women’s Health Center. He began to soften Portiah’s heart enough that she responded when Vicky called out and offered a free ultrasound and lots of practical help. At 17-weeks, her baby was big and active on the screen. Portiah’s heart was forever changed. She saw that day that her baby is a boy and she plans to name him Ethan. Her Aunt Angela opened wide her home in Clayton NC. Portiah quickly found a job, saved and purchased a car, and is well on her way to success. She is due soon, on December 8! We shared the Gospel with her for about an hour over dinner, as Aunt Angela sat there grinning ear to ear between bites. It’s obvious that God is answering her prayers – and all of our prayers! Every pregnant young lady needs an Aunt Angela.
15) Sia (pronounced See-uh) had an unusual way of coming to us. After all these months, I’m still not 100% clear on the details, but someone who knew a friend of hers found out about her pregnancy and her plan to abort. That someone told Jason Lanier, a friend of mine, and Jason set the ball in motion by contacting me and a few others. Corey-Beth Travaglini heard the story and made a special trip to the clinic to call out to Sia. Armed with only the Holy Spirit and Sia’s description, Corey made eye contact with her as she called her name, but Sia still went inside with her parents. Her heart was hard, but not as hard as her post-abortive mom’s heart. Sia was young – only 16 at the time. She’s now 17. Her boyfriend was a bit older, we knew, but not until the shower did I learn he is 30 years old (and possibly belongs in jail). Jessica Mullen reached out to her many times, met with her, and spoke truth to her. After many weeks of vacillation, Sia settled on life for her child. Her mom made things difficult for her so she left home for a few months and lived with a friend, who is also pregnant. She takes her high school classes online and should graduate this May. When I showered them on October 22, she was living back at home, but actively planning on moving in with Rian within the week. Folks, I was nervous about this shower. I’ve done hundreds and hundreds and have only had a few go badly when the exclusive claims of Christ were discussed. But I knew how very liberal Sia and Rian were. I had had several conversations with her and quickly learned that they are very militant and zealous vegan environmentalists. Her passion oozes out of her in every conversation. She participates in activism and protests – and that’s how they met each other. If you’ve ever seen automobiles covered with liberal bumper stickers, you’ve seen their cars. Really. They are that couple. She is a Pantheist who believes God is everything and in everything. He claims that he used to be Christian, but now embraces anything and everything…and nothing. Evidently, Rian is an ordained minister in the state of NC and told us of his plans to officiate a wedding at midnight on Halloween, out in the woods. I can’t imagine the pagan, satanic content of that ceremony. As always, I was planning to take them to a restaurant for the gospel presentation. We picked a restaurant with many vegan selections, but I was concerned they might get publicly agitated with the Gospel and make a scene, so I reached out to believing friends for prayer covering and God answered. (I have an awesome group of Prayer Warrior friends who pray before and during every shower! I love these folks who hold up my arms: Mary Sue & Armit Mundorf, Ann Marie Lloyd, Teresa Snyder, Jubilee Lipsey, Katherine Hearn, Holly Morales, and Gordon Howe) Due to the prayer covering, I believe, they were polite and well-mannered. She was more so than he. Rian got up to leave several times without explanation, but I feel that he was under heavy conviction. In his youth and early 20s, he was very involved in a popular local church. He knows the Truth, but he is rebelling. He’s had many hurtful events in his life and I compassionately related to him and did my best to draw him out. I loved our time together and the opportunity to ask questions and to try to get them to see the fallacy of their worldviews. I trust that God will use each spoken and written word and each breathed prayer. Their son, to be named Sage, is due December 13.
I have three showers to do in the next three weeks for Jacquese, Brandi, and Jasmine, who is expecting twins. Between January 2 and mid-February, I’ll shower Kamille, who is also expecting twins, Temia, and Vernishi. You can look forward to hearing their stories in my next update.
I need to give a shout out of thanks to Kelly Fraetis (center), her daughter Chloe (left), and Chloe’s friend MaKenna (right). They came over to help me sort and organize crib sheets, pack n play sheets, bassinet sheets, and changing table pad covers. These are hard to distinguish from each other and my supplies had gotten quite jumbled. The girls also helped repair the diaper cake shown in the photo. They also helped me bag and tag gifts for a baby shower. Kelly helped me with the challenging work of organizing breast pumps, parts and supplies into complete, functioning sets. I experienced utter relief and joy upon completion of these tasks! Thank you!
Home from college, my daughter helped me last summer with an array of ministry duties, from updating the website (did you know I’m tech-phobic?) to preparing for many showers to cleaning lots of equipment. Thank you, sweet Bethany!
Katherine Hearn came to my storage units in early October and helped me sort clothing for two showers. Thank you, Katherine!
Thanks to Autumn Moore for helping several times with the sorting and gift bagging of shower clothing!
Thank you all for your ongoing, faithful support that equips me for the work of this ministry. I could not do it without you. How I wish I could name you each individually as you deserve.
Your support and encouragement makes it all the more difficult to share this unsettling news.
Doug, my husband of 31 years, was laid off his civil engineering job in late July and still has yet to find work. We are struggling as you can imagine. If you live locally and heard the news about the South Carolina nuclear plant abruptly halting construction, know that was his project and we have been personally affected as one of the 5,000 layoffs. He worked for Westinghouse, which has now declared bankruptcy. Here’s a link with a little bit of the story, though it’s not completely accurate info: http://wspa.com/2017/08/01/5k-lost-jobs-after-nuclear-plant-construction-shuts-down/ It’s a mess and lawsuits fly in every direction, armed guards surround the site, and protests have been held at the SC Capitol building.
Meanwhile, Doug, age 62.5, searches for work. Employers would assume he is near retirement, but if you know us, you know we have young kids – one still homeschooling in high school, and the other in college. We’ve got 7 years of college yet to pay for. No one is retiring anytime soon. Doug has been diligent in searching for work and has applied to well over 50 job openings. He’s had only a couple of interviews. He’s never hurt for work before, so we tend to think the difficulty is due to his age. We’ve lost health benefits, obviously, and have enrolled in a Blue Cross subsidized plan paying $326/month. We just got word that on January 1, the premium for this same subsidized plan will triple to $1,047/month, and we have to decide what to do and enroll in it (or not) by early December. I’m a type 1 juvenile diabetic, so health insurance is critical. Will you join me in prayer?
I’ve pursued employment myself for the first time in over three decades. It’s been an overwhelming process for me. The last time I interviewed for a job, there was no internet, no email, and no personal computer. I typed a resume on a typewriter.
After a month long grueling process, and by God’s grace, I have been hired as an independent contractor with VIPKid, an online ESL company. The company claims they hire only 5% of their applicants – so I’m as surprised as anyone! I teach English to elementary-aged children in China. I adore the children and love the teaching aspects, but from my previous paragraph you might guess that I don’t enjoy the technology portion! The best part is that I can do it from home and I don’t need a vehicle. I work peak hours on Beijing time, so it’s very early morning (5-8am) and very late at night. My bookings are gradually increasing and I taught 32 classes last week. I already have established some “regulars” and God seems to be smiling on this endeavor. It has taken 3 months to get to this point, though. Today, as usual, I awoke at 4am to teach and imagine my delight as I peered into a home in Beijing and saw a cross on the wall behind my student. It’s no coincidence that today is the National Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church. I tried to ask Eaton about the cross, but with the language barrier, he didn’t understand and I must tread carefully. Props and images are always necessary communication tools in my online classroom. If Eaton books another class with me, you can bet I’ll have a cross of my own at the ready and I will try to engage with him. Matter of fact, I need to have one on hand for any student.
Will you join me in prayer for 8-year old Eaton and his family? He is a precious boy who happens to be growing in his two front teeth. He has a baby brother, too, who awarded me many smiles, coos, and waves. I pray for all my students. It’s an honor to have this opportunity to touch their lives. I weep at the thought.
In the meantime, I pursued many other avenues, but have been limited by vehicle availability. Right now, Doug doesn’t need his car, but prayerfully, he will soon. Nathan and I would need to share my vehicle and he has outside classes three days a week. I was recently hired “PRN” (as needed) at a lovely assisted living home about 20 minutes away. I obviously need a car for this, so I’m not sure how it will work out. It’s a beautiful place and a wonderful environment. Many employees, including the Head Administrator and the Activities Director, are Christian. I will be splitting my time between Concierge, front desk work, administrative duties, and social activities with the residents. They feel fairly confident that this could develop into steady work, possibly full-time with benefits (but not by our time crunch deadline). Again, for now, it’s just “as needed” so our financial needs are far from being met.
I tell you all this for a purpose. The future of Truth & Mercy is at stake if I must work outside the home. Since Bethany was born 19 years ago, Doug has been the sole provider of our household, allowing me to stay home with the children, homeschool them, and operate the ministry. On an average week, I spend about 20 hours on ministry work. I cannot possibly add a full time job (or two part times jobs) to that type of schedule. I’m still homeschooling, too, though my responsibilities are lighter.
Right now, I am absolutely committed to fulfilling all the showers I had on my schedule when Doug was laid off. At that time, my shower schedule was booked through February 2018 with about 12 showers. I’ve completed six of the twelve already and I haven’t taken any new showers in a couple of months due to the uncertainty of things. I am committed to fulfilling the remaining six that I’ve promised, even while working from 4am to midnight each day.
My proposal to you as ministry supporters is simple yet profound. If I could manage to draw a salary from my ministry work, both needs could be met: our financial need as well as the needs of pregnant women and families in our area. I wouldn’t have to seek outside employment, or as much outside employment. You all know how vital this ministry is. You know what help I provide. You know the lives saved and the lives redeemed and the lives touched. You know. You hear these accounts on a regular basis. I’ve done this for 29 years without ever taking a salary. All donations have gone directly to ministry expenses and baby supplies. I have operated on a shoestring budget, accomplishing much with very little — just about $600/month for expenses. All the baby gifts are provided through donations of (usually) gently-used baby items that I clean, organize, and store.
Regularly and repeatedly, sidewalk counselors tell me that the offer of a baby shower with all practical needs supplied for the first two years of a child’s life is a significant, life-saving offer. Of course, when I sidewalk counsel, I see this myself. Not only does Truth & Mercy supply practical help, but I also share the soul-saving Gospel message at each and every shower, and offer discipleship, as the moms allow. Ministry fruit is eternal fruit.
Obviously, my dream is big and I am hesitant to even ask because it seems outlandish, but if you have any questions, thoughts, ideas, commitments, or offers to make, please contact me as soon as possible. My email is TruthMercyLife@aol.com and my phone is 704-241-3814.
Truth & Mercy has never had official, government-recognized, non-profit status for many reasons, but I am willing to pursue that avenue if necessary. I understand having a 501(c)3 would make your giving much easier. I would also need to establish a Board of Directors. I’ve always been humbled by your generosity to Truth & Mercy all these years, especially without my having this status.
It would crush me to have to stop Truth & Mercy. I’ve shed many tears of late. Besides, who stops at year 29? I trust that the Lord wants this ministry to continue to its 30th year and far, far beyond.
Thank you, faithful supporters and friends!
Meanwhile, as usual, if you have any donations of gently-used baby items I’d love them. I have a crucial need right now for cribs, infant car seats, and boy summer clothing from size 9-24 months. Financial gifts are always welcome, as well. On my website at www.TruthAndMercyProlife.org you can conveniently donate using PayPal, or you can mail your gift to Truth & Mercy at 4803 Crownvista Drive, Charlotte NC 28269. (Please understand that donations are NOT tax deductible at this time.)
I also have a Truth & Mercy Facebook page. I don’t go into detail or show mamas’ photos on it, but you can like it and follow it here: https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=truth%20and%20mercy%20prolife%20ministries
As a reminder, please don’t share any of this content on social media sites. Relationships with these courageous mothers are hard won. They have each given me limited permission to share their stories, first names, and photos. Feel free to forward this email in its entirety to your friends, but please refrain from using social media. Thank you for understanding.
For His glory and fame,
Founder and Director, Truth & Mercy Prolife Ministries