A North American initiative that has been successful in letting women come forth and tell about their negative experiences with abortion is now poised to go global.
International Protection for Women and Preborn Children, as it is tentatively being called, will make its presence felt at two overseas conferences in the next couple of months – the L’Chaim (“To Life”) pro-life conference in Jerusalem, Israel March 13-21 and a UN Human Rights Convention in Geneva, Switzerland right after that until April 22.
IPWPC is an extension of Silent No More, which started in the U.S. as a joint project of Priests for Life and the National Organization of Episcopalians for Life (NOEL), a pro-life, pro-family para-church organization within the Anglican tradition. Silent No More lists as its goals making the public aware abortion is harmful, reaching out to women who are hurting and inviting women to speak out on the truth of abortion’s negative consequences.
In Canada, Ontario resident Angelina Steenstra organized a first-ever Silent No More awareness campaign presentation at last year’s March for Life in Ottawa. A group of women stood on stage and offered frank testimonies about their experiences.
IPWPC sprang out of discussions between Texas resident Molly White, executive director of Living the Redeemed Life Ministries south of the border, and Tumbler Ridge, B.C. resident Denise Mountenay, who has been active in a similar manner in Canada and has written the book Forgiven of Murder – A True Story, about her abortion experiences. The book has struck a chord among readers, and is now about to go into its fourth printing.
“I got call from Molly, whom I met at a Silent No More event (in the U.S.),” said Mountenay. “She has the same passion as I do and is post-abortive as well. She said, ‘Denise, I really believe we’re to start an international mission to reach post-abortive women around the world.’ I’ve always sort of had this in the back of my mind.”
Mountenay’s determination was firmed up when White invited her to attend the Israeli pro-life conference. The event will give her and White a chance to pitch the new organization to the attendees, who will include international pro-life leaders such as Bert Dorenbos of Cry for Life.
In Geneva, Mountenay will be part of a delegation from the non-governmental organization, the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute (C-FAM).
“I really believe we (post-abortive women) are going to be the key to turning abortion upside down,” said Mountenay. “I feel so confident of that, as more and more of us come out of the ashes of pain, remorse and grief.”
She added that millions of women have never told anyone they had an abortion, yet are “messed up” psychologically, physically, spiritually or emotionally. “Once we start tapping into hurting women and letting them know they can be forgiven in Christ, who is the key factor, we’re hoping they’re going to join us. They’ll realize there’s harm that’s been done to women and that there’s more of us. We’re going to be a voice to be reckoned with.”
Although International Protection for Women and Preborn Children is still formulating its official mission statement, one of its goals will be to lobby the United Nations for the protection of women from the “exploitation” of abortion.
Closer to home, Mountenay has been active for about a year in collecting statements and affidavits from Canadian women who say they’ve been harmed in some way by their abortion experiences. So far, she’s already collected several dozen such documents and hopes to collect many more as advertising grows and word of mouth about the initiative spreads.
A boost to publicity efforts may be given if CBC-TV runs an interview it conducted with Mountenay about Silent No More. The segment has not yet aired.