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“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.” John 14:27

“My husband was on and off from his job. I was at home with my youngest son when he came home and wanted out of our marriage.”

Frightened and scared of what would happen, Rose didn’t tell her husband that she was pregnant with their third child. She was a stay-at-home mom. If her husband left, she had no other options.

Rose thought her husband had a difficult time at work and that it was a temporary phase. Eventually, he would calm down and everything would be fine. Rose kept quiet about the pregnancy and waited.

Project RachelWeeks later, there was no sign of a change from her husband. He still wanted a divorce. Rose was faced with telling her husband her secret.

“I don’t want to be married, and I don’t want the kid,” were the words Rose remembered after a final plea to her husband. Things took a sharp turn, and Rose was faced with several tough decisions.

“I knew I had to get out, get back to work and find a house. I had two sons at home. My oldest was finishing high school and my youngest was in kindergarten. My mother was very ill. Everything was falling apart. I wanted a quick way out.”

“I decided that I was going to have an abortion. I told my husband about my decision, and he said, ‘Fine. We’ll go together.’”

Rose was 10 weeks pregnant when she and her husband drove to the abortion clinic. After the procedure was done, Rose was on her own. Her husband left her that day.

“I got to the point where I was in such depression. If a baby sat next to me, I couldn’t handle it. I kept dealing with this over and over. My family knew about the abortion, but I never talked about it. I even thought about suicide.”

In the midst of the chaos, it was the voice of a sweet angel who turned things around for Rose.

“My oldest son came to me and said, ‘Whatever you do, don’t do anything crazy.’”

With those inspiring words, Rose started to seek help and understanding for the pain that she was feeling.

It would be over two decades before Rose could finally let go of her pain. Rose saw an announcement about the Project Rachel retreats in her parish bulletin, but it was a final push from her therapist that made her decision clear.

“I went to a Project Rachel retreat and thank God!”

“I met people who were able to put a name on that shame. They knew what I felt, and they knew what I had been through.”

Project Rachel is a post-abortive healing ministry offered by Catholic Charities. Project Rachel provides confidential help for those struggling with issues of grief, isolation, confusion, and regret after an abortion.

“At the retreat, I found hope, forgiveness, understanding, compassion, love and friendship. They all accepted me, and they encouraged me.”

As a result of her healing experience through Project Rachel, Rose is now a sidewalk counselor for Catholic Charities’ Respect Life program. Rose currently volunteers and prays outside of Toledo’s last abortion clinic and has allowed God to transform her pain into a testimony for the protection of the unborn.

“Let go and let God. Go to Project Rachel to get healing. God works in strange ways, and He has given us Project Rachel for help.”

“God has his arms wide open. Don’t walk, run. Run towards the Lord.”

Hurting after an abortion? Find local confidential counseling at 1-888-456-HOPE or visit our Project Rachel page.

I had my abortion over thirty years ago. I never talked to anyone about it, I just pushed it further and further inside of myself but it would come out and slap me in the face and surface as anger and insecurities. I looked at myself as a nothing, not having any worth and I ended up hating myself for all the anger inside of me and how it took a toll on my life. Finally eight years ago I turned to God and cried out for help. He embraced me with his love and introduced me to Jesus whom I’d never talked with before. I committed myself to him and he directed me to a spiritual director who taught me to pray and through those prayers Jesus introduced me to my son, Jeff. It was such a beautiful experience as Jesus and Jeff both told me that they had forgiven me and I believed them but I had to take the long walk to forgiving myself and to healing from all the years I lived in silence. I became involved with Project Rachel and finally after years of never talking to anyone about my abortion I met woman who felt exactly the same way I did about taking the life of their child. It was amazing to know that I was no longer alone with my secret but was able to talk with someone who knew how I felt. I went through the bible study and learned of all the people of the past who had sinned against God yet God called them by name to repent and he forgave them and they went on to become the Saints that we can turn to and learn from as they know too how we feel as our stories are very similar. I found that God doesn’t want us to hold onto our sins but to let them go, to free us from our pain so that we can be open to his Hill and where he needs us in our life. When we carry around the burden of our sin we cannot hear God and accept his forgiveness. It takes time and patience with yourself to forgive and to heal. It took me six years to find peace with my abortion but there are times when something will occur to bring it back but now I know God, his son and the Holy Spirit are with me and I can find peace again with them very quickly.

I had an abortion my senior year in high school. I found out I was pregnant and was petrified to tell my family, so I didn’t. My boyfriend at the time said maybe I should have an abortion.

I was so scared and felt so alone in my decision. I called an abortion clinic and skipped school to meet with them. They assured me that I would be alright, and that I had bright future ahead of me, this was just not the right time to have a baby. I trusted them because they were older than me, I really even thought they cared about my well being.

They told me I didn’t have to tell my parents even though I was a minor, as long as I could get it approved through the court system. I skipped even more school and went in front of a judge with my case. He granted that I could have my abortion without my parent’s consent, and I had it the next week.

I was in the recovery room after they finished the abortion and I remember feeling like I was dead inside. I felt lost, suicidal, and not like me anymore. I lost my self esteem, my confidence, I lost Molly!

The adults at the clinic told me I would have a bright future, when in reality I did not want to live at all.

When I couldn’t bare the pain anymore I screamed out to God to forgive me for what I did, and soon after God converted me to Catholicism. Through the ministry of the church I had found hope, guidance, and strength.

Soon I found out about Project Rachel and joined them on a retreat. Here I was surrounded by other women that had gone through an abortion. I was not alone anymore. I left the retreat with a new outlook on myself and the world around me. I loved myself again.

I still have sad times concerning my abortion, but I learned that my baby was with God, and I asked my child to forgive me for what I had done. I named my baby and began praying for him.

Today I am still healing, I still cry, but I can honestly say I love life. I am driven to be pro-life, and I can only hope to make a difference in the world.

Abortion not only took my baby’s life, but it almost took mine. I am thankful for the Church and Her ministry, for teaching me to love myself, and to live for God.

Our Mission

Catholic Charities makes real the love God has for each individual regardless of faith or background, by serving the poor, speaking for and assisting the neglected and forgotten, respecting and promoting life from beginning to end, and nurturing and supporting individuals and families.

Catholic Charities Northwest Ohio