BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (KT) – More than 100 pastors and pregnancy resource center directors from across the commonwealth gathered at Hillvue Heights Church to build connections with one another and celebrate pro-life work in Kentucky on Thursday.
The evening began with applause for PRC directors and employees in attendance, and recognition of two individuals who are actively involved in ministering to women facing unplanned pregnancies.
Angela Minter, president of Sisters for Life, received a Friends of Life award for her work counseling women seeking abortions outside of EMW Women’s Surgical Center in Louisville, one of Kentucky’s two abortion providers. Jason Pettus, senior pastor of Living Hope Baptist Church in Bowling Green, also received the award in recognition of his church’s pregnancy resource center, which has been serving families in the area since 2017.
Pettus was later joined by Jim Ewing, pastor of Calvert City Baptist Church; Nicole Farley, executive director of Hope Unlimited Family Care Center in Paducah; and Monica Henderson, executive director of BSideU for Life in Louisville, for a panel discussion about how PRCs and churches can partner to both physically support and spiritually disciple families.
“Counseling women in crisis pregnancies is not giving out bulletins on Sunday mornings. It takes training; it takes time; it takes compassion, hope and help. It takes a lot of effort to get trained up in that,” Henderson said. “But there’s other things people can do in the pregnancy center that’s not counseling and not providing medical services. It’s serving on the board. It’s helping plan events…There’s a lot of different ways churches, church families, leaders and lay people can plug in.”
The group also addressed the Dobbs decision that overturned Roe v. Wade on June 24, how pastors can cast vision and encourage their congregations to partner with local PRCs and practical ways PRCs and churches can build relationships.
Three keynote speakers then thanked, encouraged and challenged attendees to continue their life-saving work.
Scott Klusendorf, president of Life Training Institute, encouraged churches to engage apologetically with pro-abortion arguments and equip their members to make a case for life.
“We aren’t equipping our own people to make a difference,” Klusendorf said. “This has to change in a post-Roe world. This can’t go forward. We’ve got to make sure people know the moral logic of our view. They have to understand it.”
Minter shared her story of two past abortions, recounted God’s faithfulness and shared the strategy her ministry uses when sidewalk counseling women seeking abortions at EMW Women’s Surgical Center, one of Kentucky’s two abortion providers.
“It’s the strategy of speaking the truth, but speaking the truth in love. And it’s the strategy of compassion—it’s the strategy of having radical compassion,” Minter said. “It’s the strategy of meeting people where they are. It’s the strategy of learning how to be an empathic listener, entering into the mother’s world, entering into the father’s world.”
More than 1,025 women have chosen life outside EMW as a result of Minter’s faithful witness and the service of her team.
Albert Mohler, president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, charged pastors to preach the truth about the gospel and abortion in season and out of season—when it is appreciated and when it is hated; when people are receptive and when people are unreceptive.
“I think there’s good reason for us to believe that (church members and church attenders) understand that, in general terms, Christians are opposed to abortion. The problem is that is not nearly enough,” Mohler said.
“Every single Christian needs to know enough Bible, enough Christian morality, enough theology, enough biblical theology to be able to say ‘We oppose abortion not because it’s bad policy or a bad idea, or even just because, in some vague way, it’s an insult to unborn life, but because every single human life, from the moment of fertilization until natural death, is made in God’s image, and as the image bearer of God every single life, at every point of development, under every condition, conscious and unconscious, is to be received as God’s gift, treasured as God’s image and respected—life defended, not life taken.”
Mohler also encouraged pastors to speak openly about Constitutional Amendment 2, a pro-life constitutional amendment that will go before Kentucky voters on Nov. 8, and train their people to understand their vote is about more than policy.
“It’s not just a constitutional revision. It’s not just a matter of law. It’s a matter of life and death. And thus it is a matter of faithfulness and faithfulness to God,” Mohler said.
Learn more about Friends of Life Kentucky, a KBC initiative, at friendsoflifeky.org. A recording of the Celebration will soon be made available. And visit yesforlifeky.com to learn more about Constitutional Amendment 2 and pledge your vote.