Starting a Pro-Life Group
By Fr. Frank A. Pavone
Priests for Life
In forming a pro-life group, confidence is one of the most
important elements. We are confident because the pro-life message is true, and
truth will ultimately prevail. We are confident because most people do see
abortion as a bad thing, and its harmful effects are becoming more and more
evident. We are confident because it is possible to change a person’s mind about
abortion, and there are countless ways to do so.
There are many resources at your disposal in the pro-life
movement. For just about every facet of abortion, there is a group that has
resources and expertise in that area. A crucial task, therefore, is to know who
the major groups are. The attached resource sheet is an initial step in that
direction. The groups on that sheet can then refer you to other groups.
Any pro-life group needs to provide ongoing education for its
members. Guest speakers, audio and video tapes, personal reading, and discussion
with experienced pro-lifers is essential to keep the group informed and
Some groups are parish groups that work closely with the
pastor. This is not the only type, however. There are independent groups of
concerned individuals who meet in private homes and can do a lot of good.
In starting a group, look for a handful of interested,
committed people. In any movement, things get done by a small, active core
group. Nurture this small group. It may be just two.
Focus on action rather than numbers. If people hear that a
group is forming, they may come out of curiosity. But it will be much easier to
draw people if they see that the group, no matter how small, is doing something.
When you speak to someone about the group, it helps to be able to say, "See what
we are doing!"
Many projects don’t take much money. Some specific
suggestions are found on the sheet, "What We Can Do to Stop Abortion."
Suggestions for clergy are found on the sheet, "What Priests Can Do to Stop
In every project, make people feel needed and wanted. Point
out to them how their talents can help the group.
The most important advice is the simplest: DO IT! If you have
a couple of interested people, start by doing. Take time to send a joint letter
to the paper about abortion. Distribute literature in the neighborhood. Spread
the word about crisis pregnancy assistance that is available. Have people start
wearing the pro-life rose or the Precious Feet or the pink and blue ribbons.
Start with simple things. The feeling of accomplishment will then spur the group
on to bigger things and will attract more volunteers.
Have confidence, and always conduct your pro-life work with
prayer and joy! You are never alone.