7e The annual Pro-Life Women’s Conference, held in Indianapolis, Indiana, began just hours after the monumental announcement that Roe vs. Wade had been overthrown. As the conference began, cries of praise and tears of joy filled the room with more than 400 women.
Joanna Hyatt – author, speaker and alumna Director of Strategic Partnerships for Live Action – kicked off the event as the first keynote speaker. She was introduced by host Lauren Muzyka of Sidewalk Advocates for Life as “the pro-life movement’s first keynote speaker in a post-Roe America!”
Hyatt’s presentation centered around the theme of the conference, “For a Time Like This,” and while she couldn’t have known the meaning of his speech when she prepared it, his words also conveyed the perfect message for every woman in the room. like the entire pro-life movement, as pro-lifers enter a new season in the struggle for life.
The changes in abortion access we are seeing are an answer to prayer that most people never imagined would happen in their lifetime. While many rejoice, evil seems to spring from the hearts of those who strongly support abortion. Hyatt recognized the importance of being aware of this evil, but refused to allow it to dissuade us from living our part in this story, no matter how small our part.
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History is replete with endless lists of times when people faced evil in various forms, and in many cases communities were riddled with fear at that time. Hyatt referenced the terror that struck the world due to the atomic bomb, sharing this quote from CS Lewis: “In a way, we think way too much about the atomic bomb. “How are we going to live in the atomic age? I am tempted to answer: “Why, as you would have lived in the 16th century when the plague struck London almost every year, or as you would have lived in the Viking Age when raiders from Scandinavia could land and cut your throat any night; or like you’re already living in a cancer age, a syphilis age, a palsy age, an air raid age, a railroad crash age, a car wreck age. In other words, let’s not start by exaggerating the novelty of our situation.
Hyatt followed up that quote by saying, “Lewis was basically saying, ‘You’re not special! “”
His words caused a room full of laughter, but his point was a worthy reminder. We are not the first in history to face difficult times. She reminded the audience, “We can take comfort in knowing that we are not the first women to live in dark and evil times.”
As the pro-life movement ventures into a post-deer America, Hyatt encouraged pro-life women to remember that we are alive right now for a reason; that we are the people God has chosen to fight for life in this point in the story. She encouraged everyone present saying, “You were born now to remind people of the beauty of life, to love your neighbors and to strive for life through prayer.”
She addressed everyone with a heart for the unborn child, saying the role women play in the struggle for life, whether small or large, is vital. Whether someone gives financially to a pregnancy resource center, helps women find healing after abortion, leads a ministry, speaks boldly on a public stage, or simply commits to praying for the movement, every person is necessary. She encouraged the public to “resist the temptation to believe that your importance is based on recognition”.
Hyatt’s message inspired every woman in attendance to “live OUR part in history – during a time like this – and what a time it is!”
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