Highlight: The sidewalk protester stereotype

There is a change in your heart and mindset when you realize that abortions take the lives of helpless children.

This realization is often accompanied by the question of what can I do about it? Many people answer this question by participating in sidewalk protests. Brian Gibson, Executive Director of Pro-Life Action Ministries, says this can be great, except that without proper training it can also cause problems.

“If they don’t have guidance, if they haven’t received the type of training we do, if they don’t have the pastoral guidance that they need, they may go out and just be angry out there. There is justification for a righteous anger toward abortion; the problem is what do we do with it? And unfortunately if you go out there and express the anger, it isn’t necessarily going to be righteous when you’re done and it is harmful, it’s counterproductive.”

Our anger can’t be taken out on the women because yelling at them and condemning them for their sins actually drives them into the arms of the abortion clinic. If we approach them judgmentally and in a self-righteous way they won’t listen and the result will be counterproductive.

How can we make a positive difference?

We always need to keep the woman’s viewpoint and situation in mind. The people who are entering an abortion clinic have real problems and struggles in their lives. The women walking into their appointment know that they’re about to kill their babies, but they are so desperate for a solution that they are willing to act against their maternal instinct.

“If they’ve got those issues in their lives that have driven them to go against their own maternal instincts to go to an abortion facility, the last thing they want to do is talk to some stranger standing on the sidewalk.”

The demeanor we have to have when we’re standing on the sidewalk becomes extraordinarily important. We have to be welcoming and we have to be approachable.

“The only way we can save the baby’s life is to talk to the mom, to help her. We have to be approachable for that woman and we need to be able to get into a conversation with her in order to get enough to her, information wise, that she will go and leave an abortion appointment that she’s already scheduled and go to a pregnancy help center or wherever else she can go, a church, to get the help that she needs.”

Brian Gibson is a national leader in the pro-life movement and has been full-time with Pro-Life Action Ministries since 1986. In January 1989 he became their Executive Director, and under his direction Pro-Life Action Ministries has grown from a small activist group in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota into the nation’s largest and most organized sidewalk counseling ministry.

Cradle My Heart

Leave a comment

Have someting to add? Login or quickly create an account to leave a comment.