Check what has happened on campuses these past two weeks

The school year may be winding down on many college campuses, but the pressure has been turned up. These past couple weeks have been insane especially.

Our students are facing discrimination on campuses, Christian schools are hosting avid abortion activists like Cecile Richards and Bill Clinton, and that’s not even all of it.

Our team is working around the clock to make sure the pro-life message is heard loud and clear before summer break begins but we need your prayers for our students. It’s a constant battlefield.

All of these instances happened just in the past two weeks:

  • Last week, Georgetown University, one of the most well-known Catholic universities in America, hosted Planned Parenthood president, Cecile Richards!! At the event, a Georgetown University employee thanked pro-abortion students for being “courageous” enough to bring Cecile to campus and said that God was “pro-choice.” The Students for Life group on campus organized an entire Respect Life Week to surround her talk. It included SFLA’s “We Don’t Need Planned Parenthood” Tour as well as our “Pregnant on Campus” Display. In addition, we helped the students bring Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood Director now pro-life advocate, to campus the same day Cecile spoke.
  • An atheist group at North Georgia University hosted a pro-abortion tabling event on campus that included baby-shaped cookies with their heads cut off!! Under the decapitated cookies was a sign that read “abortion is a constitutional right.” Our group was quick to respond, hosting their own table with pregnancy resources and educational materials.
  • Notre Dame will be giving Vice President Joe Biden their highest honor at their graduation ceremony this spring, and Loyola Marymount University, another well known Catholic university in California, has asked President Bill Clinton to give their 2016 Commencement address! We are working to make sure all graduating pro-life students at these schools get SFLA’s graduation cords to wear during their big day to protest.
  • At the University of Iowa, the school administration decided that our Students for Life group’s pro-life sidewalk chalk messages(some as simple as “Smile, your mom chose life!”) were too “offensive” and had them all washed off!
  • At Southern Methodist University, the Students for Life group created a cemetery with 3,000 crosses to represent the number of lives lost to abortion every day. They came out the next day to find out their entire display had been taken down! Not only that, a young man filmed himself ranting about the display and saying that women need abortion to be successful. The video caught traction with the students and the Students for Life group filmed a brilliant response of women saying that pro-life is pro-woman! We are working with the group now to make sure the school takes appropriate action against the vandals.
  • Our Students for Life group at the University of Colorado at Boulder had to fight with their student activities office to host Abby Johnson as a speaker. They initially denied funding to the group based on the content of Abby’s speech (a.k.a. viewpoint discrimination). With the help of our legal team and staff, the group received full funding and Abby was able to come and give an inspirational speech.
  • Harvard Law Students for Life hosted Ryan Bomberger of the Radiance Foundation to talk about abortion and race. Because this is such a sensitive subject, they partnered with the Black Law Students Association who invited a pro-abortion professor to counter Ryan. During Ryan’s talk, pro-abortion students were disruptive and disrespectful and the pro-abortion professor made SFLA remove our filming equipment, but the pro-life students pushed through and had a successful event despite the push-back.
  • And lastly, I just got an email from our Regional Coordinator, Lisa, saying that multiple schools in the Pacific Northwest are hosting Trapped, a pro-abortion documentary that argues against common-sense abortion regulations, and students are getting class credit for watching it! We are working on a unified response.

As you can see, we’ve had two busy weeks at Students for Life. We are never going to give up trying to end abortion, trying to help moms facing unplanned pregnancies and trying to expose supposedly Christian/Catholic schools who invite pro-abortion speakers and give them an open platform to students.

Mission vs Cause

The pro-life movement is filled with some of the most passionate, cause-driven people I know.  And that’s because there is no other social justice issue our nation faces where we know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that 3,000+ human beings are going to die tomorrow.  Not only do we know that they are going to die but their deaths are written down as an appointment on a calendar. Most of these babies are scheduled to go through one of the most horrific deaths possible – dismemberment.

It is when this truth sinks into our hearts as well as the reality of all these innocent lives being lost, the pain and loss their mothers go through, and the tragic loss to our human family that many of us pick up the pro-life banner and join this cause for Life.

There are so many ways you can capture this passion to impact your school and your peers.  But what is the best strategy to do this?

A mission-driven organization with cause-driven people.  

You probably already have a mission statement for your pro-life group – that is not the kind of mission that is intended here.  The kind of mission intended above is about how you view your campus and your peers – this is the Mission Field that your group has been placed in. It is made up of all kinds of people, with their own experiences, beliefs, backgrounds, races, socioeconomic statuses, and on and on.  Your mission is to impact these people positively, convert them to a pro-life position, help those who are facing an unplanned crisis pregnancy, and offer hope and healing to those who have already gone through with an abortion.  Your goal should be to take all that passion for the pro-life cause, all of those cause-driven people in your group, and help them look at your campus and your peers with new eyes.

Most students will be on campus for four years – that is equivalent to a long term mission abroad.  Four years is ample time to make a lasting impact on a community – but it really depends on how you approach your mission field, how you prepare for it, the relationships you build, and what you do with the time you have been given.  The beauty of establishing a Students for Life group on campus is that after your four years are up there are people there to carry on the work when you graduate.

If you were only cause-oriented, you wouldn’t have to worry about what other people think. You could do whatever event that you felt created the most talk or made people angry and aware.  I saw this play out at a university in Massachusetts when PETA came onto campus with a pop up event showing bloody images of animals in meat houses on a video screen in the cafeteria, literature dropping, and then leaving campus.  The students were enraged but most of the anger was at the activists – not at the conditions or treatment of the animals.  Even students who were vegetarian or vegan were upset with the event.

So, how do you approach your campus as a mission field?

Learn your campus culture.  Are there campus life and commuter students? Are there times of day when students congregate in one area or another?  Do you have a childcare center on your campus?  What are the most attended events on campus?  Check into any reports from the university on the student population to help gain a big picture of who is on your campus.

It takes time to learn your campus culture but it is important to know who it is you want to reach with the pro-life message and what events or messages may be the most effective.  Missionaries spend time learning the language, culture, religion, and mannerisms before they engage with a community.  You can do the same thing with your campus!  If you haven’t stopped to really take stock of who the people are on your campus, it’s time to take some time at your next meeting and really figure that out.

Build Relationships.  What other organizations exist on your campus?  How active are they?  Are there any who may be like minded and could partner with you?  Are there any that you should reach out to, even though they may oppose your pro-life position, to create a dialogue and relationship?

In the sales world there is a concept called The Rule of 7 Touches.  This is a principle of exposure and relationship that says that it takes 7 personal touches with a buyer to secure a sale.  This concept can be applied when you are selling a cause as well – which is basically your roll on campus to be an ambassador of Life and win people to the pro-life position.

You need to ask what are the 7 touches it is going to take to win people on my campus to Life?  Are there different kinds of touches I need to make with different people or campus organizations?  The answer of course is yes!

For instance, if you want to build a bridge with the pro-choice women’s center then you will need to start out with a personal meeting with the director and go from there, finding common ground, and alerting them about women’s issues you come across on campus through your pro-life outreach.

Again, you are going to be here on campus for about 4 years.  You have time to invest in the people around you.  Oftentimes we have an expectation that this event or outreach will sway everyone to our side and we become disappointed when our peers aren’t jumping over the fence to join us.  However, at each point of engagement you have with people you are moving them along the pro-choice / pro-life spectrum.  You just may need to talk to that same person 7 times at 7 different kinds of events – tabling, movie night, campus display, chalking, diaper drive, speaker, etc – in order to win them over.

One big issue on campus when it comes to relationship building and sharing the truth about abortion is the worry about offending other students.  This has become a larger issue just over the last couple of years, and it is important to recognize the reality, without letting it cause you to shrink away from the truth.  There is a balance here and you need to strike it for your group and for your campus.

There is a time and place for events that stir up controversy and we shouldn’t shy away from controversy, but if we want to be mission oriented we do have to consider and weigh the cost of our outreach.  If you have engaged in knowing your campus and reaching out in relationship, then when you do an event that creates controversy you will have more students willing to dialogue with you.  They will feel like they know you and if you have been consistent with showing your campus that this is not just a cause for you, but a mission and that your campus is the mission field that you are serving in love, they will be willing to listen to you.

Don’t go solo!  If you are trying to make a plan for campus outreach that includes reaching out to specific people groups get advice from organizations who are already doing that kind of outreach.  Also, call your SFLA Regional Coordinator for insight as there may be successes that other groups have experienced that you can replicate.  You may sometimes feel like you are alone on campus but the truth is there are over 930 pro-life groups across the country and a whole team at Students for Life who are behind you and can help you leverage all of our combined knowledge to help you be as effective as possible.

I walked the red carpet at an abortion film premiere

The following post is written by Reagan Nielsen, Midwest Regional Coordinator for Students for Life of America.

When I was contacted last year to have a camera follow me around for a documentary on abortion called Abortion: Stories Women Tell, of course I was excited to show the pro-life perspective because we are often incorrectly portrayed by the mainstream press as not compassionate and rather single-minded. But the reality isn’t that at all – at least in my work with high school and college students. So naturally, while apprehensive, I was looking forward to giving a glimpse into my own work in the pro-life movement as the Midwest Regional Coordinator for Students for Life of America.

abortion doc screenshot

The goal of the film, as explained to me, was to show abortion in a non-partisan light and allow viewers to decide for themselves. The director, Tracy Droz Tragos, chose Missouri for the location of the film because that is where she is from. The focus of the film was on their restrictive laws on abortion, including a mandatory 72-hour waiting period for women seeking abortion.

I was followed by the camera crew to the University of Missouri last year where I was displaying the Planned Parenthood Project on campus with Mizzou Students for Life. The display uses statistics from Planned Parenthood’s own annual report who show that their business model is geared towards pushing abortion above all else and reveals the enormous amount of taxpayer dollars they get every year. The producers also followed me in my everyday life; working from home but also on the road to visit our student groups.

The big reveal: seeing the film

I was invited to the film’s premiere, which took place at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City earlier this week. I got to walk the red carpet and interact with the other people who appeared in the film, including an abortionist. I was really nervous to be around her. I mean, this woman takes the life of innocent babies every day – what we possibly have in common besides the fact that we appeared in this film together? More on this later.red carpet abortion do

As the room turned dark and the film played, it became clear to me that this was not a “balanced” film. In fact, it was the complete opposite. This was a film whose producers wanted to destigmatize abortion. They wanted to show the difficulties women had to go through to get an abortion in Missouri and pull on the heartstrings of viewers to move them in the pro-choice direction.

The film was broken up into different parts and when it got to me, I was very disappointed to see the clips they chose to use – or rather, I was disappointed in the editing.  I was happy that they did show me talking on the phone to one of my students and explaining the mission of Students for Life of America, how many groups we have nationally and what we do.

But then they showed shots of pro-life protesters that we often see in the biased media. These protesters yell and scream at women entering abortion facilities. I was shown in the film saying that we don’t condone that type of behavior at all but it was still hard to see that kind of footage in a so-called balanced film on the abortion issue.

There are so many pro-life organizations that are compassionate and loving towards women seeking abortions or who need healing afterwards and I feel those protesters that scream and yell, while they get attention, are in the minority.

The conversation afterwards

After the film, participants in the movie participated in a Q&A to talk about it. I was emotionally drained at this point. It was a very emotional film because they followed women who had abortions and who were going through them. They even followed one woman into the operating room at the facility, where the suction of the abortion machine was loudly heard. We were able to hear the death of that child.

The reaction from the crowd watching the film was very cold towards the pro-life position. After all, it was being shown in New York City, where abortion is widely accepted and rampant.

I did my best to answer qabortion doc posteruestions and continue to be a kind and loving representation of the pro-life movement but it was difficult because I felt like the producers had betrayed my trust by saying the film was going to be balanced, when in reality it was not at all.

The director at the beginning of the Q&A said she was pro-choice and wanted her daughters to have access basic women’s health care (i.e. abortion).

The ride home

On the airplane ride back home, I had the opportunity to sit next to the abortionist who was featured in the film. She recognized me from the night before and was impressed at how I handled myself and the compassion I had shown in the film. Because I wasn’t yelling or screaming, but kind and loving, her and I were able to have a civil (and interesting) conversation for the entire two-and-half-hour flight.

Obviously we didn’t agree but to see her humanity, and for her to see mine, in a very heated issue, was important. I don’t know what will come of our conversation in the future but she is in my prayers (and please keep her in yours).

 

Overall, the experience of being in the film was disappointing because of how the pro-life movement was portrayed but I do feel grateful for the chance to show a glimpse into my own work – and the great work of Students for Life and the courageous students that I work with. Abortion is the greatest human rights tragedy in our lifetime but I do believe that this is the generation that will end abortion and we will do it with love and compassion, not hatred and condemnation.

Abby Johnson Counters Cecile Richards in the Most Beautiful Way Possible

The following is written by Justine Worden, the Service Chair of the Georgetown Right to Life group on campus.

On Wednesday evening, April 20th, at Georgetown University, after a day of protests, peaceful presences, and a ‘nonpartisan’-speaking-event-turned-political-rally, Georgetown Right to Life (RTL) welcomed Abby Johnson, former Planned Parenthood (PP) clinic director, now pro-life activist and speaker. Abby left Planned Parenthood in 2009 after assisting and watching an ultra-sound guided abortion, and has since joined the pro-life movement by spreading the word about the reality of the abortion industry, assisting abortion clinic workers who wish to leave the industry, and simply sharing her story.

Wednesday’s event was especially beautiful, given that it took place in the Dahlgren Chapel of the Sacred Heart, Georgetown’s main chapel on campus. Although RTL is not a religiously affiliated organization, it was appropriate to have the event in the Chapel, as Johnson’s talk takes a profoundly, and beautifully Catholic tone. In light of the mockery made of not only Catholic teaching on abortion, sex, marriage, and love throughout the day, but also pro-life students, it was comforting for many to hear Johnson share her story in that manner and in that particular setting.

Johnson’s talk, a look into her experiences working for and leaving PP, was deeply personal, thoroughly honest, and utterly moving. In the early stages of the talk, she discussed her childhood: Johnson recounted growing up in a pro-life, faithful home, but never openly discussing abortion with her family. Addressing a question she often receives about how a woman with her upbringing found herself working for PP, she answered, “It happened a little bit at a time, because that’s how sin works in our lives.”

After sharing with attendees the reality of PP’s abortion protocol as she experienced it and the truth behind PP’s abortion quotas and bias towards abortion, Johnson spoke more in depth on her experiences leaving PP. One of the most moving segments of the talk was her addressing the universal possibility of conversion. After watching the ultrasound-guided abortion, Johnson told the audience, she reluctantly went to the pregnancy resource center (PRC) next-door to the clinic she ran at the time. Johnson says the PRC volunteers were extremely compassionate, kind, and accepting of both her past and her future.

Given that she was so deeply involved in PP, in a managerial position, and a staunch defender of the pro-choice position, Johnson says, the PRC volunteers were likely to have thought that she would never change her position on abortion. However, Johnson showed us through her story that “no one is beyond the power of conversion,” as she told audience members. Johnson went on to share with attendees her firm belief that not only will she see the end to legalized abortion in the U.S. in her lifetime, but also her belief that one day she will not be presenting on what it means to leave PP, but rather Cecile Richards. At this, Johnson received an ovation and quite a few ‘Amen’s. She said once again, “Friends, no one is beyond conversion.”

After a day of vitriolic volleying of statistics, confrontational conversations among classmates, and what was clearly designed to be a Planned Parenthood rally rather than an opportunity for ‘open discourse,’ Abby Johnson countered Cecile Richards in the most beautiful way possible.

Johnson, as always, approached her talk on Wednesday with love in her heart, her heart on her sleeve, and her arms open wide to embrace Georgetown’s pro-life community in honesty and compassion.

Cecile Richards, You Don’t Speak For Us!

The following is written by Michele Hendrickson, Capital Area Regional Coordinator for Students for Life of America

I’ve seen it before, Georgetown University, the oldest Catholic & Jesuit University in our country, rejecting the traditional Catholic values, such as the sanctity of human life, that are key elements of the doctrine they claim to uphold.  For example, The Hoyas for Choice student club on campus operates supposedly without official recognition by the University, yet they are seen tabling weekly on campus passing out condoms, “thanking” abortion providers, and promoting Planned Parenthood.

Today we watched as Georgetown University followed through with the unthinkable: Inviting Cecile Richards, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood, to speak on campus.  This move not only implies a stamp of approval for the nation’s largest abortion vendor, selling about 897 abortions per day, but they’ve also spent the University’s time and resources on security and event staff for the day.  Oh, and of course, the Hoyas for Choice club was listed as a co-sponsor of the event!

In a bold and creative collaborative effort with Students for Life of America, the Georgetown Right to Life student-led club on campus responded in a big way proclaiming that they are the pro-life generation and Cecile Richards does not represent them.

The Right to Life Club set up multiple displays throughout the day and educated hundreds of their peers on not only the reality of abortion, but also exposed the truth about what Planned Parenthood really is.

Copley Lawn, at the entrance of Georgetown University, featured over 3,000 flags representing the estimated number of abortions in America per day.  As students walked onto campus, it was evident that pro-life voices were heard and the impGTOWN flagsact of abortion was gracefully shared with all who passed by.  Club members stood by tabling at the display the entire day.

For the morning hours, the club also hosted Students for Life of America’s We Don’t Need Planned Tour which drew a lot of attention in the center of campus at Red Square.  Conversations were fruitful and eye-opening.  Students were challenged with new information educating them on how Federally Qualified Health Centers far outrank Planned Parenthood in service quantity and quality, service locations, and number of patients served!

GTOWN displyStudents from neighboring schools even turned out to show their support.  “It was important for our group at George Mason to travel out to Georgetown to support them and the movement as a whole.  It’s our duty to speak up against abortion and the crimes Planned Parenthood has committed,” explained Lori Kostka, president of GMU Students for Life.

Around mid-day we troop-moved the display over directly in front of the building where Cecile Richards was scheduled to speak.  The line to enter her talk had already started forming and the attention immediately shifted to us, despite our display space being fenced off from the crowd.

Some students still managed to engage in conversation wiGTOWN line to get itno bldgth us, and with Abby Johnson, former Planned Parenthood Director now Pro-Life Advocate.

After a long day in the sun, we still weren’t finished!  The Students for Life of America team and Georgetown Right to Life group headed over to Dahlgren Chapel where Abby Johnson shared her story of going from Employee of the Year and Director of her Planned Parenthood facility, to Pro-Life Advocate.  It was a powerful talk and the president of the Hoyas for Choice group attended!

There will be more to come on that later, but for now the message is clear:

Cecile Richards, you DO NOT represent our voice on campus.

 

Cecile Richards got a standing ovation at Georgetown

Cecile Richards spoke at Georgetown University today. She got a standing ovation from students. From students that attend a Catholic institute of higher education. Got that? The president of the nation’s largest abortion provider got invited to speak at one of the country’s most prominent Catholic universities.

The Catholic Church teaches that abortion is a ‘grave evil’ because it takes the life of an innocent human being. Planned Parenthood not only commits close to 900 abortions a day which equals more than 324,000 a year, but last summer they were exposed through undercover videos to have been involved in the buying and selling of baby body parts – the body parts of the babies they aborted.

Media was not allowed inside the building where Ms. Richards was speaking. But one of the students of the Georgetown Right to Life group live-tweeted the speech for all of us on the outside and interested to know what Cecile was telling students studying at a Catholic university.

For these brave pro-life students at Georgetown, we salute you. You are brave and courageous and unafraid of the hostile environment you are exposed to daily.

Here’s what happened inside of the room where Cecile Richards spoke today at Georgetown:

Don’t forget to discredit those Center for Medical Progress videos, Cecile!

 

Cecile Richards Mocked Pro-Life Student at Georgetown Speech

In case you missed it, the president of Planned Parenthood, an organization that commits close to 900 abortions every DAY, was invited to speak to Georgetown University. Georgetown is a Catholic institute of higher education. Catholic doctrine teaches abortion is a ‘grave evil.’

But no matter, said Georgetown, it’s all about a ‘free exchange of ideas’. But Cecile Richards’ speech wasn’t about a free exchange of ideas. It was a lovefest of Planned Parenthood and promotion of abortion – and mocking pro-lifers

No press was allowed inside of Richards’ speech but the Georgetown Right to Life group is awesome and some of the students managed to record parts of it.

This is a transcript of an exchange during the Q&A section between a pro-life student and Cecile Richards.

Question from pro-life student:  So, by the Guttmacher Institute’s own statistics at Planned Parenthood 94% of pregnancy services are abortions, 6% are sonograms, and less than 1% are adoption counselling. How can you say that when a woman walks into your clinic she has a choice. Because from the outside it would not appear that this is complete health care when one choice is so favored over another.

Cecile Richards: The Guttmacher Institute is not Planned Parenthood, but I appreciate, you know, whatever statistics you come up with.  (Laughing & Clapping)

Q:  These are your own statistics.

CR:  We are not the Guttmacher Institute, but that’s ok.  But what I am saying actually, is that I would really encourage you to come visit a Planned Parenthood center.  What you will find, what I believe you will find, and you can call me if you don’t, and I am serious about that, is a health care organization that provides women the full range of reproductive health care and preventative services, nothing is more important.  What is important to us is that women are free to make their own decision about their pregnancies, their families, without the intervention of politicians and that is what medicine, good medicine, is all about out.  And it’s really incredible to me that a lot of the legislation that has passed, and even some of the things I am hearing now in this presidential campaign are based on the idea that women are not smart enough or able to make their own medical decisions (clapping) women make hard decisions every single day (clapping that drowns out the end of her sentence).

By the way, these same statistics are available from Planned Parenthood’s own annual report. So she doesn’t know the numbers in her own report?

3,000 cross display vandalized, students press charges at Southern Methodist U

The Mustangs for Life, the Students for Life group at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, set up close to 3,000 crosses in a main area of campus as part of the common display that memorializes the number of babies that will be aborted that day this week. Sometimes it causes more controversy; other times it doesn’t. This situation is the former.

The pro-life students spent hours setting up the display and accompanied it with signs explaining what it was all about: “There are 2,904 abortions per day in the USA” and “Memorial of Innocents: 1 Cross = 1 Life Lost to Abortion Today”.

SMU crosses

Mustangs for Life jumped through all the hoops at the school to make sure they were allowed to do this and granted proper permission.

The display was set up on Sunday evening about 7:30pm and done by 9pm. Only a couple hours later, in the middle of the night, all of the crosses had been vandalized and torn down. All of them.

One of the members got a call from someone who said that she saw all the crosses were kicked down. The members ran over to the display where indeed the display was vandalized.

The Mustangs for Life filed a campus police report on Sunday night and decided to press charges, so an investigation has been opened.

But here’s the kicker. This group refuses to back down. They refuse to be intimidated by anyone, especially on a college campus where the free exchange of ideas and debate should be allowed to flow. Of course, if you don’t agree with what’s being said, the liberal way of doing things is to shut down the other side.

However, the Mustangs for Life didn’t go that route. Thirty-two students – members and non-members alike – met at 6AM yesterday morning to replace all of the crosses. Six AM! College students got up before 6AM because they wanted to make sure that their peers knew about the atrocity of abortion, the taking of an innocent human life. They wanted to make sure that their peers knew that women facing unplanned pregnancies don’t have to choose abortion. There other options. They wanted to be an example of love and compassion and perseverance.

Mustangs for Life FB shot

“This is the pro-life generation in action,” said Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America. “This is the kind of perseverance that give us hope that abortion will come to an end. We are so proud of the Mustangs for Life and the courage they have shown in the face of opposition.”

One student filmed a video while he stood in front of the display asking questions like, “what if each cross represented something else? Each cross represents a woman who got to finish college?” and “what if each cross represented a woman who won’t be crushed by the financial responsibility of raising another child?” SFLA president Kristan Hawkins filmed a video response.

The group has since received threats of more violence on the app Yik Yak and one person threatened to burn down the display. They have had their members take shifts at the display, some even staying outside at 2:30am this morning. Campus police have also been stationed near the display to quell any vandalism.

Here are screenshots of the Yik Yak threats:

two Three

A representative from Planned Parenthood came to campus tonight to “train” abortion supporters. In what? Don’t know. Facebook messages indicate that a counter-protest is taking place next week.

We’re hiring: Southern Regional Coordinator

Are you passionate about abolishing abortion? Do you love working with young people? Are you excited and ready for an adventure? Then you should apply to be an SFLA Regional Coordinator. 

SFLA is looking to add two motivated team members:

The Southern Regional Coordinator will need to be based out of the Jackson, MS area to strategically reach the region which includes Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama.

What Does a Regional Coordinator Do?

SFLA Regional Coordinators develop and improve the effectiveness of SFLA by working with pro-life campus groups, and encouraging student participation in the pro-life movement. A Regional Coordinator’s work includes, but is not limited to, the development of new campus groups, improvement of existing groups, capturing of pro-life student contacts, and efforts to encourage member involvement in pro-life educational activities. We are looking for a person with campus pro-life experience, a passion for abolishing abortion and excellent leadership and entrepreneurial skills. This is a salary position with benefits!

What are the responsibilities of a Regional Coordinator?

  • Create a vision for growth in their region.
  • Start new, active pro-life groups per semester.
  • Improve the quality of the pro-life groups in their assigned region.
  • Coordinate pro-life students to organize student conferences, trainings, and activism
  • Network with members of the community who support the mission of SFLA.

Requirements:

  • Must have valid driver’s license, insurance, and personal vehicle to travel region.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office programs such as Word, Excel, and Outlook.
  • A positive attitude, good problem solving skills, and a passion for serving in the pro-life field are a must. Will need some experience working or volunteering within the pro-life movement.

 For full job description or to submit resume and cover letter, contact Missy Stone atmstone@studentsforlife.org.

Why I Am Wearing A Purple Graduation Cord This May

The University of Notre Dame, a Catholic school who gave President Obama an honorary degree even though he is the nation’s most pro-abortion president to ever hold the office, is continuing to honor pro-abortion lawmakers. They will give the Laetare Medal, a distinguished honor to a Catholic person, to Vice President Joe Biden, another pro-abortion politician, and to former Speaker of the House, John Boehner. And just recently, the school hosted Wendy Davis, who gained national recognition during her filibuster against a bill in Texas that would have banned abortions on babies over five months gestation.

Janelle Wanzek, the president of the Notre Dame Right to Life club will be wearing a purple graduation cord this May during the ceremony to show her solidarity with the pro-life generation. And she isn’t the only one. Students for Life of America has had an incredible response to the purple graduation cords. There will thousands of pSFLA-GraduatingMemero-life students wearing them this May across the country. But we’ll let Janelle, along with VP of Events for the NDRTL club Emily Burns, tell their story as to why many of their friends will be wearing one next month:

While we love our University and couldn’t imagine being at college anywhere else, Notre Dame as of late has made some very disappointing and discouraging decisions to us as the leaders of our school’s Right to Life group.

In early March, the University announced that this year’s prestigious Laetare Medal (given “in recognition of outstanding service to the Church and society”) would be awarded to Vice President Joe Biden and former Speaker of the House John Boehner. Our club, among many other groups, students, and alumni who strive to maintain Notre Dame’s Catholic identity, were confused and saddened by this seemingly “political” decision by the administration.

We then released an official club statement in our campus’ student newspaper in response to the decision to award the medal to Biden and Boehner, in which we addressed “why the decision of the University to bestow the award on Vice President Joe Biden and former Speaker of the House John Boehner does not align with our efforts as a club, the mission of the University and the Catholic faith.” We finished the letter by writing:

“As the Notre Dame Right to Life Club we are in disagreement with and saddened by the choice of the University to award Joe Biden and John Boehner with the Laetare Medal. We ask that the University live up to its Catholic identity and the purpose of this prestigious award and please reconsider its decision.”MFL On campus 2

Not long after we released this statement, we discovered that in early April, the College Democrats were bringing in pro-choice former Texas State Senator Wendy Davis to speak under the following title “Rising Up: From Single Mother to Harvard Law—How Every Woman Stands to Make a Difference.” The event was moderated by a Notre Dame theology professor, Candida Moss, and was also advertised in the weekly “Week at ND” emails sent to all students where Davis was described as “widely recognized as a passionate advocate for women’s healthcare and national issues which threaten our individual freedoms.”

Again, we felt discouraged and disappointed that the University would present the event in such a light. We, in response, are looking at possibly organizing a talk entitled “Women Deserve Better” hosted by a fertility care expert and a mother of a child with Down syndrome to counteract the notion set by Davis that women need access to abortion to succeed in life.

It is undoubtable that these recent decisions by the University to outwardly support and honor individuals who do not stand for the dignity of all life, particularly that of the unborn, do not align with the values of a Catholic institution. While we at Notre Dame Right to Life are saddened by this, we also know that there is still a strong group of students who are fighting for these values and for the sanctity of all life.

Undergraduate students have formed a petition objecting the medal, which now has over 300 signatures. We have joined with them to plan a prayer service on April 17th that we are calling a “Pro-Life Prayer Vigil for the Continuation of the Catholic Mission of the University” where we will be praying for the University, faculty, and students.

In light of these events, we also have let our senior club members know that we will be able to get purple SFLA graduation cords for anyone wanting to display their commitment to the pro-life movement. We have provided this in years past, with 15-20 seniors endowing the cords.

This year something changed. With the Laetare medal recipients being present on graduation day, more seniors have been taking it upon themselves to display their pro-life views. We currently have about 70 senior undergraduates requesting cords. All 70 are hoping to also wear pro-life pins in silent protest to the Laetare medal recipients.

Although our University does not seem to be demonstrating a strong commitment to the pro-life movement, we as the Notre Dame Right to Life club are, as well as many graduating seniors.

Learn how to get your own purple graduation cord here!