The Windsor-Essex area will soon have its first residential support for women facing a crisis pregnancy, thanks to a persistent divine call given to Sister Linda Dube.
Sr. Dube, president of the board of directors at Our Lady of Guadalupe Home, told The Interim that “the Lord bothered” her to do something to promote the right to life. Carolyn Cole, an acquaintance whom Sr. Dube had not heard from in 40 years (and a former Interim subscription manager), told her about Show the Truth and convinced her to attend one of their tours. While there, Sr. Dube was challenged by a pro-abortion supporter about what she had done for women and their children in crisis. She realized that she had not done anything tangible, and after taking the problem to prayer, realized that she needed to open the home.
Sr. Dube consulted Bishop Anthony Daniels, asking if he stood behind her plan and whether the diocese could donate a rectory for Our Lady of Guadalupe Home to use. A board was eventually formed. One of its members asked for all involved to pray a novena to Our Lady of Lourdes. Two days later, a man offered to build the home and provide other assistance.
Windsor’s crisis pregnancy centre, Pregnancy Resources, has operated for 25 years. They provide medical advice, counselling, crisis pregnancy services, and post-abortion healing. However, Our Lady of Guadalupe is the only local organization that will offer a residence specifically geared to pregnant women in distress. The house will be finished in late November and operational in early 2014. There will be room for seven women and their children, as well as a house mother to serve as a mentor. Residents will be able to stay for one day short of a year to comply with tenancy regulations. The home is geared to “pregnant women with nowhere else to go, who have been abandoned by a boyfriend, husband, or God forbid, their family,” explained Sr. Dube.
Volunteer training will follow the model used by the Sisters of Life, and the home’s structure will be based on Fresh Start community services. The volunteers will be professionals and others who serve as delivery coaches and will offer instructions in breastfeeding, newborn care, child development, parenting, and budgeting.
One of the most important aspects of growth Sr. Dube emphasized was the continuation of their clients’ education, whether high school, college or university. “When women leave, we want them to be financially independent. You can’t do that without education.” she said.
So far, Sr. Dube noted that most community members “are delighted – they can’t wait for us to get started.” She invited Interim readers to learn more and support Our Lady of Guadalupe Home by mailing her at 1565 Riverside Drive West, Windsor, Ont, or visiting the home’s website, www.ologhome.com which will be set up soon.