Flower

Archive for October, 2011

Fred Barnes on pro-life progress

Fred Barnes

Fred Barnes

Great article in the Weekly Standard by Fred Barnes on the progress of the pro-life movement in recent years.  He said

That the pro-life movement is bigger is a given. It’s also younger, increasingly entrepreneurial, more strategic in its thinking, better organized, tougher in dealing with allies and enemies alike, almost wildly ambitious, and more relentless than ever.

***

 They’ve begun piling up successes. In 2011 alone, 24 states have enacted 52 new restrictions on abortion. Five now require an ultrasound before an abortion, two insisting that the screen be viewable by the mother. Four bar abortions after the baby is able to feel pain (at approximately 20 weeks). Eight have opted out of Obamacare. Five ban abortions by webcam (in which a doctor, not in person but videoconferencing with the mother, prescribes pills to induce abortion). Six trimmed or eliminated funds for Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider. Texas led with a $64 million cut.

Although he didn’t mention CBR by name, he quoted from a piece by abortion industry leaders Frances Kissling and Kate Michelman, who lamented the effictiveness on our work when they noted that “Advocates of choice have had a hard time dealing with the increased visibility of the fetus.”  Kissling and Michelman were very specific about how our movement is making the fetus visible:

“… in recent years, the anti-abortion movement [meaning CBR and others] successfully put the nitty-gritty details [meaning pictures] of abortion procedures on public display [meaning university campus exhibits], increasing the belief that abortion is serious business and that some societal involvement is appropriate.”

These pictures are precisely why our successes continue to build.  (For more on this, see previous FAB post here.)

Barnes went on to highlight the work of two good friends, Lila Rose of Live Action and Kristan Hawkins of Students for Life of America (SFLA). Live Action’s under-cover investigations have exposed Planned Parenthood covering up for child abusers and sex traffickers at numerous abortion facilities all over the country. Lila was a recent guest on my show (audio here).

SFLA has established pro-life groups at hundreds of universities and colleges around the country. At CBR Southeast, we work closely with SFLA to start pro-life groups in our region and train student leaders how to be more effective at leading pro-life activism.

Poverty a reason to kill your child?

GAP at Radford University

GAP at Radford University

Does the possibility of adverse economic circumstances justify killing your child?  One student at Radford University thought so.  Read his letter here.

Here is my response:

Responding to Mr. Schall, would you be stunned to learn that millions and millions of Americans have children and don’t go on welfare?

A few years ago, a student asked me “What about a woman who gets pregnant and has to drop out of school, so she and her baby are doomed to a life of poverty?”

Another student overheard and jumped in, “Hey, I know a woman just like that. She was waiting tables and got pregnant and had that baby.” He paused, then said, “And boy am I glad, because I’m the baby.” He said that after his mother had him, she got serious about her life, went back to school, and got a nursing degree. Now she’s the head nurse at a hospital and makes $90,000 per year. He made one final observation, “You know, I think that if my mother had aborted me, she’d still be waiting tables.”

Mr Schall, this student’s mother was not a weakling, and you don’t have to be, either. Part of being an adult is taking care of your responsibilities.

You are justifying killing another human being—your own child, in fact—because that child will be inconvenient to you. You might have to rearrange your life a bit. Yes, parenthood does have it’s responsibilities. It’s always been like that. Others have done it; you can, too.

Fear of poverty is no excuse for killing your child. If you think that’s a good justification, imagine what the judge and jury would say if you tried it on your born child. Tell the judge that your child was getting in the way of your career. If he’s not sympathetic, say “I feel really bad about my choice.” See if that works.

Look, if you can’t take care of your child, there are many couples willing to adopt her and provide the loving home that you are unable (or unwilling) to provide. I speak for many pro-lifers all over the country when I say, “Bring that child to me; I’ll take care of her.”

We never said a woman should be forced to have a child; we said a woman shouldn’t kill a child she already has. If you don’t want to have a baby, that is your choice. Don’t get drunk and don’t have sex. Millions of people wait until marriage to have sex. It doesn’t ruin their lives.

Bottom line: Grow up.

If anybody wants to see what Mr. Schall thinks is such a great idea, see the video at http://www.AbortionNo.org.

Pro-abort student at Radford University agrees with CBR!

GAP stimulates informed dialogue.

GAP stimulates informed dialogue.

After our appearance at Radford University earlier this fall, Radford freshman Joan Laguzza wrote a letter to the RU Tartan, the student newspaper, commenting on GAP.  In her letter, she complained about our presence, but actually agreed with us about one of the most important aspects of the project.  Read her letter here.

Here is my response:

Responding to Ms. Laguzza, my name is Fletcher Armstrong and I am the Southeast Director of the Center for Bio-Ethical Reform, the group that brought the Genocide Awareness Project (GAP) to Radford University.

First of all, we agree with you about the most important aspect of the project. You say that the photos were assaulting, violent, difficult to look at, nauseating, shocking, traumatizing, etc. Those are your words and we agree. Abortion is all of those things. But here is a fundamental question: How is it that pictures of abortion are too horrific to see, but the act of abortion is OK to do?

You say that the pictures “assaulted” you, and that you had no choice but to look at them. I would point out that had you desired, you could have turned your head away from the pictures and walked right on by. We watched many people doing exactly that. Apparently, you didn’t turn your head; in fact, the details in your letter suggest that you studied the images very carefully. We’re glad you decided to study the images, but it was clearly your choice to study them or not.

You apparently claim the right not to be offended by anything you see, that Radford University should prevent you from seeing anything that offends you. Have you considered the implications of your claim? Would you grant to pro-life students the power to remove anything on campus that offends them?

You wonder if Radford is anti-abortion. No, they are not. But as a public institution, Radford has no ability to censor the speech of its students. The right of pro-life students to present their views and, just as importantly, their right to present the facts upon which those views are based, are protected by the US Constitution. That right extends to all citizens, not just those who go along with the ideology of those in power. During your time at Radford, you will be exposed to many ideas. Some of them will offend you; some of them will offend others who disagree with those ideas. That’s just part of living in a free society.

Pro-lifers and conservatives have the right to get their message to those who want to receive it. You have the equal right to get your message out. You and everyone else also have the right to listen or not. What you don’t have is the right to interfere with people who want to offer a message, nor with those who want to receive it. What you witnessed earlier this month was an interchange of information from people who had a message they wanted to offer and other people who wanted to examine that message and consider its meaning.

You said you wanted a more balanced approach. You said you want more diversity. You should confer with your pro-choice friends on the faculty before you say that again, because that’s the last thing they want. In much of academia today, college professors represent the “full range” of political views, from the far left to the extreme far left. The Washington Post reported that on college faculty today, 72% are “liberal” and only 15% are “conservative” (www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A8427-2005Mar28.html). In practice, it’s even worse than that, because most of the conservatives are teaching engineering, science, etc., where abortion is not a topic of interest. Trust me, in your time in academia, you will hear more pro-abortion propaganda than most fair-minded people can stomach.

You wanted an opportunity for intelligent and reasoned thought. You wanted inspired debate. I can tell you that we saw debates about abortion taking place all around the GAP display. The difference between those debates and most debates about abortion is that once people have seen abortion pictures, abortion apologists can no longer get away with asserting the myth that the preborn child is not a baby, but just a blob of tissue. People can no longer pretend that abortion is anything less than an act of violence that kills a growing child.

You say you welcome the opportunity to be exposed to different views. Perhaps you found this presentation so disturbing because we pro-lifers not only presented our views, but also the facts about abortion that make those views compelling.

You wanted filers on a table, so that you could ignore them. Your complaint reminds us of what they said to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., when he marched against racial injustice. They wanted him to confine his activities to the Black church, where he could talk about racism among people who cared about racism. Everyone else didn’t want to be bothered. But Dr. King knew that in order to change the status quo, he had to show people that racism was much worse than they imagined. It was pictures of Black men and women being attacked with dogs and water cannons—those picture appearing on TV and in magazines reaching millions of American households—that turned the tide against segregation in the South.

Our operating principle actually comes from the King family. Dr. Martin Luther King said that, “America will not reject racism until America sees racism.” His niece, Dr. Alveda King, now says that “America will not reject abortion until America sees abortion.” That’s why we are working to make sure that every American sees abortion for what it is, an act of violence that destroys a growing child.

For more information about abortion—no matter what you decide, you want your decision to be informed by the facts—visit www.AbortionNo.org.

Occupy Wall Street … just like the Tea Party!

Just like the Tea Party, right?

Just like the Tea Party, right?

Occupy Wall Street is just like the Tea Party, right?  Perhaps there are a few minor differences, some of which are summarized in the video below.  For more on flag desecration of the American flag, see photos here: warning, graphic images.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gi93UDT_IUs

A desperate need for healing

Nicole Cooley

Nicole Cooley

So many students we meet on campus are really hurting.  Most of us have no idea what some of these folks have been put through.  This story is from Nicole Cooley, our Virginia Project Director.  She encountered a student on a recent GAP excursion.  We are changing his name and withholding the name of the school.

A desperate need for healing.

Stewart approached our poll table and declared his belief that abortion should remain legal.  Standing next to a large visual exhibit comparing abortion to other forms of historical genocide, I asked Stewart why he felt that way.

At first, he told me he was a “Darwinian Christian” and said that a person’s inner strength is vitally important.  We explored his views for quite a while as I struggled to understand them.  He admitted to a personal childhood of abuse, and given my own experience with rape, I found a link.

I silently prayed for God to help me reach Stewart and then these words came out:  “Stewart, you don’t believe a woman should have the right to abort her child, you believe an unborn child should have the ability to abort himself.”  He looked at me and the tears began to fall down his face.

He told me, “You don’t understand what I went through … for ten years!”  When I asked him if I could give him a hug, he willingly came into my arms and sobbed while I held him.  I spoke quietly to him until he calmed down and then I looked deep into his eyes.

When he affirmed that he could hear the voice of the Holy Spirit as a born-again believer, I told him how to be healed.  I told him that the only way out of the pit of despair was to allow the “Wonderful Counselor,” Jesus, to peel away the layers one at a time.  I understood that at a moment of trauma, how Satan had lied to him and told him that he would have been better off dead.  That lie, spoken into his subconscious in the midst of abuse, now led him to accept abortion.

I have prayed for Stewart ever since that day and I will never forget him.

Planned Parenthood lying on camera … again

Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards

Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards

Planned Parenthood’s lying would be comical if it weren’t so deadly.  Here they go again.  This is from our good friends at LiveAction.org.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aq0kBkUZbvQ

World ends today … Who needs tickets!

The end of the world: It ain't gonna be pretty!

The end of the world: It ain't gonna be pretty!

FAB has just learned that Harold Camping scheduled another one of his famous end-of-the-world parties for today.  We missed the last one.  Bummer.  Anybody know where we can get tickets?  We’ll buy your extras.

Why Liberty University?

Darius Hardwick and GAP at Liberty University

Darius Hardwick and GAP at Liberty University

This story is from Darius Hardwick, CBR’s Midwest Director.

“Are you more pro-laundry now?” Greg said as he pushed his sweaty gym shorts under my nose. “We don’t need to see this, we are already pro-life!”

This was the almost unanimous statement we heard from students at Liberty University (LU) when we brought our Genocide Awareness Project (GAP) there this fall.

Greg is one of the many students at LU who were upset by seeing abortion photos at their university. He stayed and debated for well over an hour about how our abortion photo signs were ineffective at getting peoples’ attention, forming relationships, and getting people engaged in the abortion battle.

After an hour of lively on-camera debate, we all shook hands and exchanged contact info. He even offered to edit the video for us, because that is a part of his major! He admitted he would not have met us had it not been for the pictures.

LU is the largest private non-profit university in the nation, the largest university in Virginia, and the largest Christian university in the world. According to the LU website, “[Liberty] is designed to develop Christ-centered men and women with the values, knowledge and skills essential to impact tomorrow’s world.” We went to LU because those are the types of people who need to engage the culture on abortion.

We talked to many great kids who were growing in their relationship with God, and had high hopes of serving Him with their educations. When the inevitable question came from every student, “Why are you here?” We replied, “Because Christians are the only ones who will stop abortion, and you are the cream-of-the-crop.” All week long, our plea for help was met with blank stares. It had not occurred to them that they should personally do something to stop abortion.

God said to the Israelites through the prophet Jeremiah, “For if you truly amend your ways and your deeds, if you truly practice justice between a man and his neighbor, if you do not oppress the alien, the orphan, or the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place, nor walk after other gods to your own ruin, then I will let you dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers forever and ever.” (Jeremiah 7:5-7) God said to “amend your ways.” We as a nation are guilty of all of this, but note that God reserved His harshest words of judgement against Israel for their practice of killing innocent children. Here in America, we have killed more than 54 million innocent preborn children.

“As for you, [Jeremiah] do not pray for this people, and do not lift up a cry or prayer for them, and do not intercede with Me; for I do not hear you. “Do you not see what they are doing in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem?” (Jeremiah 7:16-17)

We must not say, “Look what they did.” We need only drive through our cities to see the neon signs for the establishments of drunkenness, fornication, and pride in homosexuality. Finally we will come to the “clinics” where innocent blood is shed. When will God tell America, “I don’t want to hear your prayers until you amend your ways?”

Let us amend our ways before it is too late.

Charles Johnson, Herman Cain’s teacher, American hero

Great article on Herman Cain, GOP presidential candidate who’s been in the news lately.  He was born in Memphis and grew up in Georgia.  In college, he studied math and computer science.  He became the CEO of Godfather’s Pizza, and after that, a syndiated columnist and radio talk-show host.

From an article about Mr. Cain (here):

Cain credits his success to a high-school math teacher, Charles Johnson, who told him, “You can be whatever you want to be; you just might have to work a little harder and work a little longer.”

Charles Johnson is a real American hero.

Compare the education Herman Cain got from Mr. Johnson to the education inflicted on so many of our young people by the American left:  blame others for your failures, look to government for solutions, demand that others pay for your every need.  If you want to see the damage that this kind of thinking does to people, look no further than the OWS debacle.

I can’t find the exact quotation, but I read recently that people who blame others for their failures actually give away their only chance for success.  Anybody see that?

My last conversation with Kortney Gordon

Kortney Blythe Gordon

Kortney Blythe Gordon

I was in Macon, Georgia with Kortney, just before the terrible crash that took her life.  She had organized an awesome conference for pro-life students from all over Georgia.  As we were packing to leave, we were discussing Father Frank’s “incarceration” down in Amarillo.  (For more on that, click here and here.)

I was commenting how important Fr. Frank is to our whole movement.  We are populated by people who have strong opinions, not only about abortion, but also what will stop abortion, how we go about it, and just about everything else.  We butt heads a lot.

Fr. Franks is critical to our movement because he is one of those unifying forces that brings people together.  He always has a word of encouragement.  We Protestants admire him just as much as Catholics do.  He is an advocate for the graphic pictures, but he is well respected by people who oppose them.  No matter what kind of pro-life work you do, you have a common friend in Fr. Frank.  His ability to unite people behind our common objective is critical to our mission.

As I was saying all of this, I thought of one other person like Fr. Frank.  I looked at her and said, “Kortney, I just thought of somebody else who is that kind of unifying force in the pro-life movement.  It’s you!  That’s what you do.  You bring people together.”  She smiled at being compared to Fr. Frank.

Looking forward to our next meeting, I finished packing and headed toward home.  It was only about 2 hours before that terrible crash.

Kortney, we’re going to miss you.

More tragic news

Jon Scharfenberger

Jon Scharfenberger, 1989-2011

We are sad to report that Jon Scharfenberger has died of his injuries from the October 8 auto crash that also claimed the lives of Kortney and Sophy Gordon.  Jon went to be with our Lord at about 9:45 am this morning.  More here and here.

Jon was the Pregnant on Campus Coordinator of the Students for Life of America (SFLA).  Jon had many successes in his short time at SFLA, including establishing a pro-life campus group at Florida International University that was successful in saving the life of a pre-born baby, a mere one week after its creation. You can read more about this story here.

We will post information about arrangements as it becomes available.  More information from SFLA website here.  Donations to cover funeral costs are being accepted here.

Please pray for the Scharfenberger family during this enormously difficult time.

Kortney Gordon … still inspiring and saving others

Kortney Blythe Gordon, 1983-2011

Kortney Blythe Gordon, 1983-2011

I attended Kortney’s funeral in Matthews, North Carolina, on Friday.  I wanted to share with you a story about a couple who witnessed the crash Saturday night and later e-mailed the family.  It was a real encouragement, even in the middle of unspeakable grief.  These e-mails were handed out to all in attendance at the funeral, but we will change the names of the couple who originated the exchange.

About the middle of last week, the family received this e-mail:

Hello,

My name is Jason Bice. I was there last night at the scene of the accident. My wife (Amber Bice) and I came upon the accident no more than thirty seconds after it happened. There were five other people there that witnessed the crash. They were all waiting for help to arrive. Knowing the area and knowing how long it would take emergency crews to get there, my wife and I stopped the car and got out to help.

The accident was bad, one car was on top of the other. I immediately found myself out of my comfort zone, but I went ahead and climbed into the car on the bottom to check on the driver. I exited that vehicle and went to check on the one on top. The vehicle on top was in a dangerous position. It could have slid off and rolled over at any minute. As my wife and I thought about what to do, I noticed that the other drivers had come out of their comfort zones and offered help.

We pulled one young man out of the vehicle and away from the car to safety. We went back for the other who had apparently crawled out himself and we moved him away from the wreck. My wife who is an ER nurse and thirty weeks pregnant cared for them while we went back for the others. We couldn’t get to the other two people due to the position of the vehicle. One of them was Kortney, someone you all loved dearly. Someone that passed away doing something she cared so deeply for and devoted her life to.

Ten minutes after it happened, police and firemen were there and took over.

My message is this, I came out of my comfort zone to help the 5 people that were involved in the accident. The other bystanders, seeing my wife and I trying to help, came out of their comfort zones and started helping too. There were 15 of us working to care for the hurt before EMS and police even showed up. We put ourselves in harms way to help them. There were men holding the car steady while we pulled people out and away from it. It’s time for all of us to come out of our comfort zones. Kortney came out of hers a long time ago. In a world where it seems a lot of people think abortion is OK, she stood against it and gave it her all. There is one thing we can do to keep her awesome spirit alive, and that is for all of you who read this to come out of your comfort zones, to help and support those in need and to stand strong for what is good and right.

The 20 minutes I was at the scene of the accident and then reading Kortney’s story today have changed me forever. I hope her story lives on and does the same for more people.

Jason Bice

Kortney’s uncle Don Blythe, who is a long-time pro-life activist and an early inspiration to Kortney, responded for the family:

Jason,

In the midst of our deepest of grief and overwhelming sorrow, my brother, Kortney’s father, and I were having trouble working our way through our brokenness, even though we had an inner confidence of the hope of our coming reunion someday, when it would be our turn to meet our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Then your email came in and the power of your careful words and testimony ministered to us and all of the family and friends we shared it with. I thank you with all of my heart for you and your wife, and the divine appointment God set for you that evening. Your information has further confirmed in us that our Lord was still there and many concerns were answered by your actions for Kortney.

We began the process of recovery of our spirits after reading your email.

I hope you have also placed your trust and faith in Jesus Christ for your souls, so we can meet you in Heaven too someday. May the God of Heaven bring an outpouring of love and grace on you and your precious baby as you live out your lives in this world.

I will never forget you and what you did for our Kortney.

In His Steps,
Don Blythe

Here was the reply from Mr. Bice:

Don,

Those words came from my heart and what I am about to tell you is, too.

My faith in God was almost completely gone before that night. I don’t think I had prayed in over five years. If I did, it was probably for something so selfish that it wasn’t worth remembering. I have prayed more in the past few days than I have at any other time in my life. God was really weighing down on me Saturday and Sunday. I felt like I had to find out who the people in that accident were. When I did, I felt like I had to send that email and to share Kortney’s story with everyone I met. I continue to tell people the story of her life and how that night changed me forever.

To say that she and the rest of the people in that accident changed my life is an understatement. They saved my life.

My wife and I have cried tears over the pain that this must be causing you and the rest of her family. I am glad that sending these emails has helped ease that pain. I love all of God’s people and hate to see anyone in pain. I hope you all find a way to make it through this tragedy.

I can safely say now that my wife and I will have that chance to meet her in heaven.

With love and hope,
Jason Bice

Occupy Wall Street: the Democrats’ very own Tar-Baby

The mob wants free education and free health care

The mob wants free education, free health care, free i-pods, free internet access, etc., etc., etc.

In a recent post, FAB wondered if the riots that started in Europe would spread to the United States.  We’re finding out.  What we are seeing in the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) mob is exactly what Ann Coulter talked about in her new book, Demonic: How the Liberal Mob Is Endangering America.  To really understand OWS, you should read Ms. Coulter’s book.

OWS mobsters can’t articulate any coherent justification for their “movement,”  other than their entitlement to OPS (other people’s stuff).  They rail against corporate America, but they communicate on i-pods and cell phones manufactured by American corporations.  Ann Coulter wrote:

No one knows what the Wall Street protesters want — as is typical of mobs. They say they want Obama re-elected, but claim to hate “Wall Street.”  You know, the same Wall Street that gave its largest campaign donation in history to Obama, who, in turn, bailed out the banks and made Goldman Sachs the fourth branch of government.

This would be like opposing fattening, processed foods, but cheering Michael Moore — which the protesters also did this week.

George Will noted another incoherency, that Washington is too corrupt, but it should be given more power to control our lives. Citing the kind of corruption that would be promoted even more aggressively if the OWS mob gets its way:

[The Obama administration’s Solyndra episode of crony capitalism] does not validate progressivism’s indignation, it refutes progressivism’s aspiration, which is for more minute government supervision of society. Solyndra got to the government trough with the help of a former bundler of Obama campaign contributions who was an Energy Department bureaucrat helping to dispense taxpayers’ money to politically favored companies. His wife’s law firm represented Solyndra. But, then, government of the sort progressives demand — supposed “experts,” wiser than the market, allocating wealth and opportunity by supposedly disinterested decisions — is not just susceptible to corruption, it is corruption.

Message: you should be responsible for his student loan.

This guy believes you should be responsible for his student loans, even if he majored in something worthless that makes him unemployable (e.g., transgendered studies) and teaches him nothing about capitalism except how to tear it down.

The list of OWS demands proves that nothing is too extravagant for the people who don’t have to pay for it:

… a “guaranteed living wage income regardless of employment”; a $20-an-hour minimum wage (above the $16 entry wage the United Auto Workers just negotiated with GM); ending “the fossil fuel economy”; “open borders” so “anyone can travel anywhere to work and live”; $1 trillion for infrastructure; $1 trillion for “ecological restoration” (e.g., re-establishing “the natural flow of river systems”); “free college education.”

And forgiveness of “all debt on the entire planet period.” Progressivism’s battle cry is: “Mulligan!” It demands the ultimate entitlement — emancipation from the ruinous results of all prior claims of entitlement.

Mark Steyn summed it up quite well:

[The] “occupy” movement has no real solutions, except more government, more spending, more regulation, more bureaucracy, more unsustainable, lethargic pseudo university with no return on investment, more more more of what got us into this hole.

Desperate for something to give energy to their upcoming 2012 election campaign, the Democrats have embraced OWS and have encouraged its continuation and growth.  This is too good to be true.  Looks like the Dems have created their very own Tar-Baby, but unlike Br’er Rabbit, they are eager to embrace it, not fight it.

The best outcome possible is that the OWS continues to expose itself and the American Left (i.e., the Democratic party) for what it truly is, an angry mob who claims entitlement to the fruits of other people’s labor.

The Anti-Capitalist System

The Anti-Capitalist System

Update on Jon Scharfenberger’s condition

Jon Scharfenberger

Jon Scharfenberger

FAB will give updates, as available, on the condition of Jon Scharfenberger, the Students for Life of America (SFLA) staff member who is fighting for his life in Macon, Georgia.  Jon was critcally injured in Saturday night’s tragic auto crash that claimed the lives of Kortney Gordon and her preborn child Sophy.

Tuesday, October 18:  We are sad to report that Jon Scharfenberger has passed away from his injuries.  He died earlier today.

10:45 pm, Monday, October 17:  Jon has spiked a fever of 108 degrees F, which can be lethal. Urgent prayers are needed as this battle has taken a terrible turn for him.

10:30 am, Monday, October 17:  The doctors have induced a 72-hour coma in Jon.  Now is the time for prayer and fasting for Jon and his family.

5:30 pm, Saturday, October 15:  No further updates.  Pray for Jon’s condition to stabilize so that he can be transferred to a hospital specializing in brain trauma.

12:45 am, Friday, October 14:  Late Wednesday, Jon’s condition destablized for a time.  Throughout the day Thursday, his condition regained some sense of stability, but the issue is still in doubt.  Please pray for God’s healing for Jon, and pray for his family’s strength and comfort as the battle rages.

1:00 pm, Wednesday, October 12:  Jon has shown significant improvement since yesterday.  His condition remains extremely critical, but he is trending in the right direction, especially over the past 15 hours.  Please continue to pray.

2:00 pm, Tuesday, October 11:  There is a ray of hope.  Jon’s neurological condition has stopped deteriorating and has held steady through the night and through the morning.  From eye movements through his closed eyes, he is showing response to meaningful people in his life.  Having lived through the day yesterday, and having no further decline today are very hopeful indicators, though he remains in extremely critical condition.  The next 24 hours are crucial.  Specific are being withheld at the Family’s request.  Please keep up the prayers.  (link to source)

Stunning and sad news … Please pray

Kortney Blythe Gordon

Kortney Blythe Gordon

Sunday, October 9:  We are stunned to learn of the death of our dear friend Kortney Blythe Gordon, who was killed (along with Sophy, her preborn child) in an automobile accident near Macon, Georgia last night.  Story here and here.  Kortney was the National Field Director for Students for Life of America (SFLA), and was in Georgia to attend the Students for Life of Georgia conference that was held yesterday.

Three passengers in Kortney’s car were seriously injured.  Updates on the passengers and their progress are given below.

Please pray.

Update, 1:00 am, Monday, October 10:  SFLA staff member Jon Scharfenberger was also seriously injured in the crash.  His prognosis is not good.  We’ve been told that the other two passengers have regained consciousness.  Updates are being posted on the SFLA Facebook page.

Update, 10:30 am, Monday, October 10:  No further word on Jon.  He is still in critical condition and is in the ICU.  SFLA is hosting a webcast at 5:00 p.m. ET tonight for those who want to pray and offer their words of support for Kortney’s family and of encouragement for Jon. David Bereit of 40 Days for Life, Reverend Pat Mahoney of Christian Defense Coalition, and Claude Allen of Gerard Health Foundation will be on the call to lead us in prayer and discussion to honor the lives of Kortney and her daughter Sophy, and to offer words of encouragement for Jon and his family. We encourage you to join the webcast by clicking here.

Update, 2:30 pm, Monday, October 10:  The other two persons injured in Saturday’s crash have been identified as Leo Buckle, President of the Students for Life group at the University of South Carolina, and Ginny Stone, a pro-life activist from a pregnancy center in Durham, NC.  Ginny’s condition has been upgraded to stable.  Both Leo and Ginny are expected to live, although they have sustained extremely serious internal injuries requiring extensive surgery.

No further word about Jon, except that he is in extremely critical condition.

More details about the accident have been published.  According to a press report, Quenby Means Jr., 56, of Irmo, SC, was southbound on Eatonton Highway (US 129), about 8 miles north of Gray Ga., when he attempted to pass two cars in his SUV.  He crashed head-on into Kortney’s northbound SUV.  Kortney and her passengers were on their way home from the Georgia Students for Life conference in Macon.

Update, 4:00 pm, Monday, October 10:  Jon’s condition is worsening.  We are told it will take a miracle for him to last until tomorrow.  Please pray for this awesome young man.

Update, 8:30 am, Tuesday, October 11:  We’ve learned that, as of last night, Jon had pulled out of the steep decline that was reported yesterday.  His condition has leveled off, which is a good news, but Jon still has a long way to go.  SFLA is asking for prayer and fasting.  A special time of prayer is requested at noon today and every day for the next 10 days (link).