Nov 3, 2009
Concerned Women for America return to ‘first principles’
by Melinda Zosh
Wendy Wright remembers praying outside an abortion clinic in Florida that God would help the women inside love their children and that they would choose life by walking out. She was arrested for her demonstration and her case went all the way to the Supreme Court. Though she lost before the law, little did she know that her prayer would soon be answered.
A friend told Wright that a pregnant woman she knew went to obtain an abortion. The nurse had already administered gas anesthesia to ease the experience, and the nurse was preparing surgical tools when the doctor burst through the door.
“Nurse, stop the gas. She has to pay more money,” the doctor said.
Wright explained that the woman was farther along in her second trimester than the medical staff had realized, and abortion clinics typically charge more if a woman is past the first trimester. The woman refused to pay, gathered her belongings and walked out of the clinic.
Wright, president of Concerned Women for America (CWA), later met the woman and her new child.
This was just one of several stories that Wright shared at the “Now More than Ever” Conference held at the Brookhill-Wesleyan Church in Forest, Va. Vice President of Policy and Communications for The Family Foundation Chris Freund and Virginia Senator Ken Cuccinelli, Virginia’s Republican candidate for Attorney General, joined Wright in encouraging the audience to return to America’s biblical roots.
CWA’s Virginia Director Janet Robey wanted the audience to know that their voices can be heard in the public policy debate.
“The purpose of the event tonight was to educate and to let (the audience) know the issues that were the most pressing and to give them hope,” Robey said. “We’re not in this alone. This conference helped let people know that they do have a voice.”
Freund emphasized the importance of the upcoming local and gubernatorial elections, encouraging attendees to vote Nov. 3.
“Are we going to continue to accept things like taxpayer-funded abortion and government-controlled health care?” Freund asked. “Are we going to accept the radicalization of our country or are we going to send a message to Washington, D.C., that they’ve gone just too far?”
Freund emphasized three issues that “wake him up every morning” — human life, the right for parents to choose methods of schooling for their children, and religious liberty.
“My wife and I didn’t know if we would ever be able to have children,” Freund said, whose wife is a leukemia survivor. “To hear that heart beat for the first time, there’s nothing like it.”
Since April, the Family Foundation has interacted with more than 4,000 churches across Virginia, distributed more than 100,000 Family Foundation general assembly report cards to rate general assembly members on values issues and distributed approximately one million voter guides, according to Freund.
“If we can elect solidly pro-family leaders, then we will see a difference in the future, and we can pass legislation,” Freund said.
“You don’t have to be a person of faith to be pro-life,” Cuccinelli said.
Denae Brack, a Liberty University communications graduate student and CWA member, said her earliest memories about the pro-life movement are from a CWA trip to Washington, D.C., when she was six years old.
“I saw the Supreme Court and that’s when my mom said, ‘That’s where judges decided that women could kill their own children,’” Brack said. “That moment changed me and helped me form my core beliefs.”
Brack said women need to stand up for their beliefs, and CWA is one way for them to voice their concerns.
“We already have a voice, but we need a way to use it. CWA is standing up for so many important causes,” Brack said. “Women can’t afford to be quiet anymore. We need to stand up and take action.”
Wright said the women’s rights movement has provided a unique opportunity for conservative women to speak out because the other side of the debate is rarely heard.
“Many people, Christians especially, don’t realize how much government affects us and public policy,” Wright said. “It poses grave threats to our religious freedom, threats to the sanctity of life, threats to marriage, threats to the safety and security of our country, but many people are not quite aware of that yet.”
In addition to fighting abortion, it is important for individuals to protect the Marriage Amendment and the principles that formed America’s foundation, Cuccinelli and Freund said.
“It’s up to those of us in this generation to preserve that principled foundation and to return to it,” Cuccinelli said. “People get wiser with age. Nations do not.”
Robey said that young women need to defend their beliefs by preparing for leadership positions in the future.
“We need to find women who are willing to take that mantle for the next generation,” Robey said. “We need young women who can come behind us and carry on that tradition.”
Education about officials, issues and organizations is the key to success, according to Robey.
“We have elected officials who think like we do. Even though the climate in Washington is anti-Christian, we have good folks in state and national politics. Organizations can cross those barriers and work together,” Robey said.
One of CWA’s goals is to “provide a different viewpoint from what most of America has heard before,” according to Wright.
“It’s a great opportunity to encourage more people to be involved. So many women feel frustrated that there are groups such as National Organization of Woman (NOW),” Wright said. “It gives an opportunity for their voice to be even louder. If you have a lot of drops (coming) together you create a flood. By joining together we are able to have a bigger voice than if we are alone.”
Hannah Hunt, former vice president of a CWA prayer action chapter located at Liberty, encouraged young women to attend a CWA meeting. Meetings are usually held every other Thursday, and students can search “Liberty University: CWA” on Facebook for more information.
Contact Melinda Zosh at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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