Lutherans for Life celebrated their 15th anniversary on Oct. 3, with the theme, “Hope in the Light of Life.” About 100 pro-life Christians from various denominations attended the celebration and all- day seminar, hosted by Zion Lutheran Church in Pembroke, Ont.

Rev. Scharf, a local Lutheran minister, started the session with an invocation from Deuteronomy 30:19: “This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life that you and your children may live.”

After the invocation, local dignitaries addressed the crowd gathered in the church banquet hall. Pembroke Mayor Les Scott greeted the crowd warmly, and expressed his strongly held belief in the sanctity of human life. “God gives the gift of life to all people,” he said.

Shawn Conway, MPP (Lib-Renfrew North, Ont.) also addressed the crowd and expressed his opposition to abortion as a means of birth control. He went on to express his concern about the decline in morality in contemporary society. Hector Clouthier, MP for Renfrew-Nippissing, stated that he empathized with pro- lifers and guilty for not doing enough.

He also rejected abortion as birth control but then emphasized the reality of being an MP in the federal Liberal Party. He made it known that Justice Minister Anne McLellan told him in no uncertain terms that an abortion law will not be considered while the Liberals are in power.

Mrs. Linda Bartlett, president of Lutherans for Life in the U.S., was a dynamic speaker. She proudly announced that Lutherans for Life is growing throughout the world, with new branches opening up in a number of countries, including Brazil and Romania.

In her speech, she emphasized the fact that God designed marriage, and that as part of His creation marriage is good. She drew heavily from Genesis 1-3 and Matthew 19 in her teaching on God’s ideal of marriage as a life-long covenant and a place of security and nurturing for children.

In her exposition of the Scriptures, Mrs. Bartlett referred to the fall from grace in the Garden of Eden and the entering of Original Sin into the world. She said this is the reason why men are abandoning their roles as head and provider of the family. This is why women are rejecting the traditional role of motherhood and instead are killing their children. She warned the audience that “Satan loves crisis pregnancies” and abortion, which “destroys a creature made in God’s image.”

In response to this awful problem, Mrs. Bartlett called on Christians to be “lights for life” and to “be people of refuge for hurting women.” She made it clear that this can be attained only through the empowering of the Holy Spirit and that it is Jesus who equips us to be “lights for life.”

She encouraged Christians to help women confront the sin of aborting their children, and to learn how to forgive themselves and others, rather than to run away and deny the need for forgiveness. She also encouraged congregations to support crisis pregnancy centres and to encourage pastors who are hesitant to speak on life issues.

After Mrs. Bartlett’s teaching, a member of the audience asked if Lutherans for Life was willing to take a definite stand against oral contraceptives in the light of mounting evidence of their abortifacient nature. While Mrs. Bartlett did not commit to either the pro- or anti-contraceptive side of the debate, she did call for both sides to respect each other.

Speaker urges caution on Pill

However, given the irreconcilability of the two positions, a brief debate ensued. Pat Hansard, CEO of Abortion Recovery Canada, waded into the debate and warned Christians that they should err on the side of caution with contraceptives and abstain from them if they pose any risk to unborn children.

When interviewed after the discussion, Mrs. Hansard indicated that she has serious problems with IUDs and oral contraceptives, and that she believes the evidence of their abortifacient nature is sufficient to compel Christians to avoid them.

Mrs Hansard, also a featured speaker, delivered the most fiery and passionate speech of the day. She related her own personal testimony of how her mother’s and sister’s lives have been scarred by abortion and how her mother attempted to abort her.

She discussed the Satanic element of the abortion industry, and how some abortionists view their aborted babies as offerings to Satan. She encouraged Christians to wage spiritual war against the abortion industry, and exhorted the audience “that this work has lasting eternal value.”

She encouraged pro-lifers not to feel guilty for taking on the work of saving babies from abortion, and not solving all of the world’s other problems. She encouraged pro-lifers to ask pro-abortion supporters what they are doing to make the world a better place to live in, when the pro-abortionists confront pro-life supporters with the question of what else they are doing.


Mrs Hansard pointed out that God did not create women to kill their children, and that when women do abort they literally destroy a part of their self identity. She held up the cross as the source of healing for aborted women and emphasized the need for a spiritually based post-abortion counselling program.

For the aborted women who seek help, she held out this great Scripture passage of hope: “Fear not for I redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.” (Is. 43:1)