Spreading Love to All on Campus, Even if You Don’t Agree with Them

By Margot Loza, University of Idaho

Our Students for Life team at the University of Idaho tabled on campus to advocate for the love of a mother and her child around Valentine’s Day. But we also formed new bonds with the university’s feminist group to promote a healthier environment for women on campus. Here is how we did it.2015021395114027

The feminist group, F.L.A.M.E. (Feminist Led Activist Movement to Empower), was tabling about 20 feet away from us and maneuvered over to our table to argue as to why abortion should be the choice of a women. The air became tense, as usually happens with discussions about abortion.

We successfully were able to relieve the tension a little bit when I introduced myself and thanked them for what they were doing, passing out encouraging messages such as “you deserve love.” Can’t argue with that, right? I’ve found that finding common ground with the opposition can help soften their hearts, or at least make them open to conversation.

It turns out one of the girl’s name was Margaux, which is my name only spelled differently! See, we already had something in common! After the conversation was more personal, it was a lot easier to continue our discussion.

When the women asked what our mission statement was, we were honest as to declare the absolute goal is to abolish abortion but also to make a healthier environment for women who are pregnant or with child on campus.

They were really interested in that. Their eyes lit up and told us their plans of trying to get lactation rooms on campus. Ecstatic, we told them that we’d love to help out since we were working towards the same goal. I had no idea that this feminist group wanted to help get lactation rooms for nursing mothers on campus – that has been one of our goals and we were thrilled to be able to partner with another group to make it happen.

Because we were able to have a civil discussion and find common group, our Students for Life at the University of Idaho comfortably discussed the topic of abortion, formed a coalition with F.L.A.M.E. and promoted the love of a mother and child.

All this was accomplished just from tabling on campus with some posters, chocolate and flowers. People just want love and to be loved.

Fight for love on your campus and don’t forgot to try to find common ground with your opposition – you may be surprised at what happens.

High School Group Saves A Life

On the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Alicia J., President of Savanna High School’s Students for Life group was invited by the Diocese of Orange in California to give a testimony about her pro-life group in front of 300 people. She was able to brag about all the great work that Students for Life does. Many people congratulated her and asked for herheartlogo number – they wanted to hear more about what her high school does. In fact, she is scheduled at the end of February to give another talk to a group of teens of the Poor Clare Missionary Sisters.

Upcoming plans for the club include having the members participate and support their local 40 Days for Life. Alicia is also going to try to get her parish more involved in the 40 Days for Life this spring.

The last time the Students for Life club tried to participate in the National Chalk Day, the school administration shut it down! However, they are looking for ways to work with the administration so they are able to participate in it come March 5th.

Lastly, the best news from the Savanna High School Rebels for Life club is that a baby has been saved this year! The club’s advisor, Mr. Armstrong, relayed a story to the whole club that one of the girls in the club came up to him after a meeting and told him that a friend of hers was pregnant. She asked for advice and afterwards told him that her friend decided to keep the baby!

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Students Lobby for Ban on Late-Term Abortion

by Lauren Castillo, SFLA Rocky Mountain Regional Coordinator

Students Lobby for Ban on Late-Term Abortion

Millennials are far from being dispassionate about the legislative process and the pro-life
position. In New Mexico, where there are currently no restrictions on abortion and late-newmexicomobilizationterm abortion facilities, many homeschool, high school, college, and nursing students went
to the state capitol, Santa Fe, to testify in support for House Bill 390 the Late Term Abortion Ban Act and House Bill 391 Parental Notification Act last week. For most of the students this was the first time they had lobbied, attended a committee hearing, or even visited the capitol!

Getting a front row seat

Before going inside I did a quick training with them and then I was able to lead them in a discussion with New Mexico’s Lieutenant Governor John Sanchez which could not havenewmexicomobilization1 gone better. They met other legislator’s, those who sponsored these bills, lobbyists, and legislative aids as well as some of the House Regulatory and Public Affairs committee members.

The majority of the students were from the Four Corners Students for Life Club (Farmington Homeschool and Farmington High School students) from Farmington, NM and traveled from about four hours away and stayed the entire time. We arrived at the roundhouse at 11:00am and the second hearing did not end until approximately 9:00pm, they were so passionate and dedicated to ensuring that the pro-life generation be heard.

We are the Pro-Life Generation

These students owned the room with their POWERFUL testimonies and captivating presence. I heard many of those who were there in opposition to the bills whispering about their presence and discrediting them because they “have no life experience” or that they have no idea what they want as women because they are just young girls. Despite all of this, the students were so captivating because they spoke about how their generation and peers back home do not support late-term abortion and support parental notification based on their activism and work as a club. They talked about their friends who faced unplanned pregnancies, or were abortion-minded, and how they responded to them as pro-lifers. They shared how powerful the work they do as the pro-life generation impacts others in their community. The students ensured that the attendants knew just how crucial offering life-affirming resources and support are to the abortion minded people. They stood up and said that New Mexico needs strong families and empowered young people, and both of those can be achieved practically through education and support.

It was a priceless experience, and every single one of them said they couldn’t wait to go and do it again! I can’t wait to see how these students continue to grow in their work as pro-life champions.

The opposition

One of the most important parts of this day was their ability to meet other pro-life students and supporters from all over the state and come together to see how important it is tonewmexicomobilization2 create a network of activism and support for one another. Some students were shocked to see that the majority of the pro-abortion advocates who were there testifying in opposition
to these bills, were not of their generation. They witnessed the anger on their faces, in their voices, and lack of friendliness they exhibited towards the pro-life students.

They were able to hear the extreme beliefs of the abortion advocates in New Mexico, such as:

  • One pro-abortion supporter testifying against this legislation said: “if we are considered an abortion factory, then we are doing good for women”.
  • An ACLU New Mexico Representative who was in opposition to HB 390, the Late Term Abortion Ban Act said that “we cannot allow the affliction of pain against others” for his reasoning on why we should keep late term abortion legal. I wonder if he listened to the description of how late term abortions are committed…
  • A Planned Parenthood lawyer and board member stated that late-term abortions are done in hospitals. I don’t think he did his research or has ever heard of Southwestern Women’s Options, abortionist Curtis Boyd’s facility where they do abortions to the day of birth and home to the majority of late-term abortionists in our country right in downtown Albuquerque, NM.

The great news was that BOTH of these House Bills passed out of this first committee and the students cannot wait to continue their work to help them become laws in New Mexico. This is so crucial because New Mexico is the late term abortion capitol state of the country.

Here’s what some of the students said about the day:

Friday was extremely empowering to know that what I said actually made a difference in a big way! I was standing up for what I believed in, in a way that actually made an impact.” – FHS SFL Member Erin

I’m really glad I got to take part in making the end of abortion one step closer to a reality!” – Four Corners SFL Member Emily

Going to the House of Representatives was incredible! I learned so much, and was able to truly make a difference. After it was over I felt so happy and empowered that our small group was able to have such a big impact.” – FHS SFL Member Anna

“Going to the Capitol in Santa Fe to support two pro-life bills, changed my life. Not only was it informative and educational, but it showed me how much I was meant to be in the pro-life movement and how dedicated to the cause that I am. If you ever want to know how much of a difference you make in the pro-life movement, I recommend taking a trip like this. I truly changed my state and am on my way to changing the world.” – FHS SFL President Audrey

 

 

 

 

…to impact as many lives as possible

Gonzaga University Students for Life in Spokane, WA have worked tirelessly in February, not just to be a part of the national pro-life movement, but to create a movement for life on their campus through SFLA.gonzaga1

In February alone, the GU Students for Life group has done more than some groups combined do all year, but they haven’t stopped there. Their goal isn’t to do as many events as possible; their goal is to impact as many lives as possible.

In the first week of February, GU Students for Life brought five students, who drove seven hours, to join 25 other students from around the Northwest at the capital in Olympia, Washington to testify at the Parental Notification Senate Committee hearing against Planned Parenthood, NARAL, and an abortionist.

One of their amazing leaders gave her testimony immediately following a woman in opposition to the bill who had been raped when she was younger. The entire room was silent and unsure what to think. Our student got called up after her and instead of jumping right into making her point, she began by recognizing the woman in tears and told her that she is praying for her.

Other club members who were unable to attend further Senate and House committee hearings have since sent emails to their legislators and representatives to make sure their voices are still heard, even when they can’t physically be present.

Gonzaga University Students for life get it. They see the national movement that they are a part of, and they are willing to drop anything in order to provide needed support.

They also see the movement in their community. They have been praying with 40 Days for Life every other week outside Planned Parenthood, attended the Spring 40 Days for Life kickoff rally, and participated in a Sidewalk Counseling training, all in February alone. But it doesn’t stop there.gonzaga3

They are making a tremendous difference on their campus as well. On top of weekly meetings, they are currently holding a Life Week covering the theme, “Pro-Life is Pro-Woman.” It has consisted of hosting Sally Winn, President of Feminist for Life, to speak at their Pregnancy Resource Forum as well as multiple tabling events throughout the week, promoting pregnant and parenting resources, and hosting a “healing and wholeness” mass for women who have had abortions and miscarriages.

These students understand their mission on their campus, in their community, and in our nation for life. They are actively working to change hearts and minds, change our culture, and see lives saved.

That’s what this generation is about. That’s what every student should be working towards. It’s about the movement on your campuses across the country, and we are seeing lives saved because of it.

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Announcing SFLA’s Midwest Regional Coordinator

We are excited to announce our newest addition to the Students for Life of America team, Reagan Nielsen! Reagan will serve as our Midwest Regional Coordinator, covering states IL, MO, KS, and NE.
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Reagan graduated in 2013 from the University of Missouri with a B.S. in Journalism and minors in Business and Political Science.  She was the Founder and President of Mizzou Students for Life and was also part of the Students for Life Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship in 2012.

Since graduation, Reagan has worked in the pro-life movement through marketing by reaching abortion minded women and directing them to local pregnancy help centers.  She has spoken at numerous pro-life events, banquets and schools, sharing the truth of abortion with young people across Missouri.  She is dedicated to equipping her generation with the education and tools necessary to end abortion.  Reagan can be contacted at rnielsen@studentsforlife.org.

Relive the SFLA National Conference

Were you able to come to the Students for Life of America East Coast National Conference on January 23rd and were so blown away by our speakers that you want to hear them again? Did you want to come but for some reason couldn’t make it? Either way, we’ve got you covered.

Now you can sort through your favorite speakers and watch them all over again or for the first time.

David Bereit, Abby Johnson, Professor Robbie George, Stephanie Gray, Josh Brahm – we’ve got them all.

This conference is the largest pro-life conference in the entire world and we think everyone, no matter where they are, should get to hear our great speakers.

If you were really inspired by one particular speaker or a panel, share the link with your friends or on social media. Chances are others will share your passion and be just as inspired.

 

COURAGEOUSLY INFLUENCE / WILLIAM WILBERFORCE LEADERSHIP FELLOWSHIP 2015

Are you a leader or officer in your campus pro-life group? Do you aspire to work in the pro-life movement full-time? Do you want to be mentored by a national pro-life leader?

If you answered “Yes” to all of these questions, then you need to apply for the SFLA Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship!

The William Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship 2015 will take top pro-life student leaders from across the nation and give them a life changing experience. With one-on-one mentoring from current pro-life leaders and bi-weekly leadership readings and webcasts, the Wilberforce Fellowship provides the necessary leadership skills to impact and shape this generation. Simply put, the SFLA Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship gives the training you need for a future in the pro-life movement!!
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What Students are Saying:

“It was the Wilberforce Fellowship that gave me a real understanding of the pro-life movement and the perspective and training that I needed to pursue work in it. This program strengthened my leadership skills and equipped me to work towards tangible change in the pro-life movement. If you are looking to take your involvement and efficacy in the pro-life movement to the next level I recommend applying!” – Connor York 2013-2014 Wilberforce Fellow

“The Wilberforce Fellowship has been a positive experience for me for many reasons. Through it I have been introduced to new people and ideas that have helped me to grow. I love how it connects students and clubs from across the country. We learn from each other and from the example set by leaders in SFLA and other organizations. Apply if you are interested in building your leadership skills, knowledge, and relationships within the pro-life movement!” – Stephanie Kaefer 2014-2015 Wilberforce Fellow

“It has been an honor being a part of The William Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship. Going through my Wilberforce project has also broadened my view of the pro-life movement. It has given me a bigger motivation to speak out and to challenge others to stand up for those who can’t stand up for themselves. One of the reasons I’m honored to be in this fellowship is because it is named after William Wilberforce. He is someone who I admire and consider a role model. He was called by God and stood firm against the cruelest of people and never gave up on what he was called to do. He persevered and finally saw his mission accomplished. Like him, the Lord has put before me two great objects: the abolition of abortion and the sharing of his Saving Grace. The Wilberforce Fellowship has helped me to be more equipped to do both of these things. I would highly recommend this program to anyone!” – Nick Bell 2014-2015 Wilberforce Fellow

Visit http://college.studentsforlife.org/wilberforce-leadership-fellowship/ or contact Rebekah Chiew at rchiew@studentsforlife.org for more information on how to Apply for the 2015-2016 William Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship.

“We will dance on the graves of the babies”

At our first stop in the Northeast with the brand new Human Rights Tour, which educates students and challenges them to consider in their own hearts and mind when humans deserve human rights, the Students for Life group at Williams College in Williamstown, MA faced over two hours of a guy ranting about how all humans need to be destroyed.

Campus security refused to remove him because while he was loud, obnoxious and annoying, they said he was not breaking any laws.

The guy was relentless, yelling “we must destroy them all, we will dance on the graves of the babies and the women and the men.” He thought that the Williams for Life group is religiously affiliated and they are not.

The Students for Life group tried to calmly talk to him multiple times but he was not interested. However, they did a great job with the new display and were able to have great conversations about human rights.

This is the first school in the Boston area that hosted the Human Rights Tour. This display will go to others this week in that region.

You Will Be Challenged

by RJ McVeigh, SFLA Great Lakes Regional Coordinator

Some lawmakers have been making tragic and unwise decisions about abortion recently. First, U.S. Representative Renee Ellmers (R-NC), along with a few others such as Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (R-IN), sabotaged the federal Pain Capable 20-Week Abortion Ban bill in the House of Representatives. Second, U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH), publicly flip-flopped by denouncing his Pro-Life views in favor of calling himself Pro-Choice. Also on the radar is that Gov. Scott Walker has hired an abortion-friendly staffer to manage his presidential run. And lastly, Michigan House Representative Brandon Dillon (D – Grand Rapids) followed in Ryan’s footsteps by publicly switching from Pro-life to Pro-Abortion-Choice.rj2

Millennials have a fairly simple – but immensely powerful – message for these politicians and any others considering similar moves: You will be challenged on your abortion views.

We are the majority. We are rising up. We will not be silent. Any public figure who believes they do not need to take the pro-life movement seriously, as those listed above clearly do, is a fool. You cannot sabotage common-sense pro-life legislation, hire pro-abortion staff to run your campaigns, or completely back-stab our movement by switching teams and get away with it.

Just ask Renee Ellmers, Tim Ryan, or (most recently) Brandon Dillon.

When MI Rep. Dillon posted his op-ed two weeks ago, it took Students for Life approximately 20 minutes to organize students from every college in Dillon’s district with a protest plan. We called his office repeatedly until we had a meeting arranged with him a week later. Students from Grand Valley Students for Life, Grand Rapids Community College Students for Life, and Aquinas College Saints for Life spent the next seven days planning to get out of class and gathering letters addressed to Dillon from dozens of their peers. We had conference calls to establish our talking points, we mobilized dozens of students, and received countless messages and prayers of support from our peers, families, and communities.rj3

Partnering with Right to Life of Michigan, we were able to gather at their headquarters in downtown Lansing, Michigan to go over the game-plan ahead of time. Every student wore matching shirts that said, “I AM THE PRO-LIFE GENERATION”.

When we met with Rep. Dillon at his office, we had to move to a meeting room across the hall because we did not all fit in his office. He was respectful and thanked us for coming, but he was clearly uncomfortable.

The students were phenomenal. As soon as Rep. Dillon gave them the floor, they launched into their reasoned arguments. Their first move was to point out how abortion on demand actually harms women, which I believe struck a chord. They then systematically and intelligently walked through the reasoning behind a pro-life position, step by step. Rep. Dillon quickly became defensive and began going off topic frequently – a sign of insecurity. The students had him on his heels, and they knew it. They did most the talking for over 40 minutes. As things began to wrap up, they ended graciously by informing Rep. Dillon that we will welcome him back if he admits he is wrong. As one student put it: “There is still time for you to be a champion for Life.”

The point here is simple. The youth are pro-life. If you want to win the youth, the answer is not to be pro-choice or to avoid talking about abortion. The answer is to be passionately and emphatically PRO-LIFE. And if you betray this pro-life generation we will notice, we will act, and we will make your political life uncomfortable. Because we believe in human equality; and we get pretty upset when you discriminate against preborn human beings at the expense of their lives.

Join us! Rise up with us! If you are a student right now, email info@studentsforlife.org to find out who your Regional Coordinator is to get involved. (If you are a student in MI, IN, or OH e-mail me at rmcveigh@studentsforlife.org).  If you are a Michigan resident, e-mail Rep. Brandon Dillon at bdillon@house.mi.gov to tell him his recent change of position is a huge mistake.

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Planned Parenthood Got a Giant….

….Valentine’s Day Telegram from the Pro-Life Generation!
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Just because they need to be reminded that this generation:

Happy Valentine’s Day Planned Parenthood.