Personal Request to Priests and Clergy

PriestIf you are a priest or/and a clergy member, there will be a time in your ministry when you will face some one who was involved in abortion; a woman who had it, a man who payed for one, father who may have forced on her daughter. I am speaking only from my own painful experience here, and in no way would like to say that every one had been through the same. As a little child, I confessed once stealing an eraser and got yelled at by my confessor. I know this accident may sound insignificant, but it was enough to turn me away from confession for the years to come. When a woman comes to you for confession or advise, please do not judge her. She has already judged herself, and probably is convinced that the only place she is going to is hell. It is an opportunity given to you by God to point her towards heaven and salvation. Being a priest or minister you do represent God to her, and your words are no longer yours. If she needed to talk just to another person, friend or a psychologist she probably would not have come to you. She turns to you because no one could provide her with answers. She turns to you because, some where in her heart, there is still hope that maybe God will forgive her. Unfortunately many a times, women a ripped off their hope in forgiveness by no other than clergy member. It would be very good idea to prepare yourself for an event like that. Some times it may take much more than just one confession or one counseling session, and healing after abortion may take years. The good news is that there are people out there who have been through abortion, have found their way to healing and are willing to share with others. Look around an find out if there are any support groups or ministries near your church that are working with people who have had abortions. Encourage creating such ministries at your own church. Keep handy names of a few doctors who will be willing to see woman who have had an abortion if emergency arises. It will be difficult to find such doctors, due to the possible litigations and no one would want to clean some one else’s mess, and that is alright, sooner or later you will come across a doctor who will not mid to help you. When she comes to you, it may be her very first step on the road of healing and you may be the one to point her towards the right direction. Things to be mindful of:

Abortion may have been recent and she may have suffered complications and needs medical attention. It is very unlikely she would go for the follow up to the same doctor that she had abortion at. If needed she should be sent to an emergency care room. She may be pregnant with another child. Most of the second abortions occur within one year of the first one. If she is pregnant, she needs to be referred to some one who knows how to handle a “crisis” pregnancy. Finally, she may have had more than one abortion. It is fine to ask her if this is the only abortion she had. Many women say that one of the most difficult things to do is to come up with the “number” if they had more than one abortion. Women also say that getting the number out is very healing. Do not be surprised or taken back by the number you hear. Every number generally represents years of guilt and self-punishment.

Finally, this kind of ministry will probably be most rewarding experience for you. You are one of the most important people these women will ever meet besides God himself. Picture by: tome213