Even for those who haven’t been to church in a long while, the beautiful hymns of Christmas stir something in the soul. One of the best parts of being Catholic is getting to sing these songs well past Christmas Day, enjoying the full length of the season.
For the past 13 years, people have gathered to sing Christmas carols at a most unlikely place — abortion clinics.
Reports have come in about how this unconventional ministry has affected those who heard the carolers this year, and about how some babies were saved because of it.
Pro-Life Action League Executive Director Eric Scheidler described three different California couples changing their mind at the abortion clinic at the very last minute, as carolers sang outside Family Planning Associates abortion center in San Bernardino.
“What impressed me about this report is they actually stopped to tell the caroler group that they changed their mind,” Scheidler stated.
“[One] couple told them, ‘It was because of your caroling that we decided to keep our baby,’” he said. “The singing was the only thing that happened to change their mind.”
The pregnancy had put the couple’s marriage under pressure, Scheidler continued, making them feel pressure to abort.
But when they came out and thanked the carolers, “They were holding hands and in tears,” he said. “This had introduced healing into their marriage.”
This Christmas saw an increase in the caroling effort, with groups in 72 U.S. cities taking part in “Peace in the Womb” Christmas Caroling, organized by the Pro Life Action League and Pro Life Action Ministries.
The power of the hymns is a beautiful way of expressing love and concern to young women in unplanned pregnancies, maybe reminding them of the the most significant unexpected pregnancy in the history of the world — the Christ Child, born to the Virgin Mary in Bethlehem. The pro-life groups have recounted pregnant mothers and couples expressing their gratitude and telling them the singing touched them, helping to steer them away from abortion.
“We just love doing it,” said Michele Herzog, director for the Orlando Pro-Life Action Ministries office.
The group sang carols at the All Women’s Health abortion center in Altamonte Springs and two Orlando abortion centers.
Between the two locations, the carolers reported that two sets of twins and two other babies were saved. Herzog said the facilities are set up so that the pro-lifers are able to sing and be seen from the waiting room window or the entrance, making them much more visible than at many other facilities.
In one case she witnessed, two teenage girls with the pro-life group were singing a song they wrote themselves titled “Let me live.”
Herzog said a couple came out and told them, “We’re not doing it.”
“It was just really an amazing day,” she said. “It really was something else.”
“These carols hit home,” Herzog said. “While [the women are] sitting in this dark, dark place, they hear us singing and praying, and it really does make a difference.”
Last year, she said a Muslim couple decided not to abort after hearing the Christmas hymns.
“God had just touched her with those carols,” Herzog recalled of the pregnant mom. “She just kept saying, ‘the songs, the songs.’”
“It has quite an impact, I believe,” Herzog said.
“We’re having a baby! We changed our minds,” a woman called out joyfully on Tuesday, December 20, during Christmas caroling at an abortion center in Wood Dale, Illinois.
When the group met the couple at their car, the man said to them with a big smile on his face, “Thank you. You’re doing a great job!”
“What exactly was the ‘great job’ we did?” Maria Goldstein of Northwest Families for Life reflected. “We didn’t counsel them on the way in; we didn’t talk them out of the abortion; we weren’t even able to show them pictures of developing babies. All we did was show up, pray, and sing,” she continued. “Maybe they heard our carols inside and felt God tug at their hearts. I guess that really is a ‘great job!’ We got to bring the power of God to this dark place. God is good.”