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Rachel Winnie, a Christian mother and pro-life activist, stood in 27-degree weather in front of 150 people gathered outside of Planned Parenthood in Knoxville, Tennessee, in the middle of February to tell her powerful story. Winnie was one of the speakers at an event called The Church At Planned Parenthood (TCAPP) which, according to its website, is not a protest, but a “worship service at the gates of hell.”
In the fall of 2017, Winnie became unexpectedly pregnant. Like many young women who find themselves pregnant, alone, and afraid, Winnie made an appointment at Planned Parenthood to abort her baby. At the Planned Parenthood East Atlanta Health Center in Atlanta, Georgia, Winnie was given the first round of abortion pills, also known as mifepristone, during her appointment. According to Planned Parenthood, “Mifepristone blocks your body’s own progesterone, stopping the pregnancy from growing.”
After the appointment Winnie went home and took the second round of pills called Misoprostol. This second round of abortion pills causes cramping and bleeding. According to Planned Parenthood, “It will usually start 1-4 hours after taking the misoprostol. It’s normal to see large blood clots (up to the size of a lemon) or clumps of tissue when this is happening. It’s kind of like having a really heavy, crampy period, and the process is very similar to an early miscarriage.” After taking the two rounds of pills Winnie states, “It was a rough, rough night. Without getting into detail, it was not only emotionally, but very physically traumatic.”
A few days after the abortion, Winnie’s family came into town for the holidays. At that time no one knew about the abortion except for Winnie and the father of the baby.
However, Winnie’s mother knew something was not right. After the visit, Winnie’s mother met with an elder from her church back home in Tennessee and asked for prayer for her daughter. The elder opened up his Bible to Romans 8:5-6 and told Winnie’s mother to tell her daughter to choose life.
Two weeks passed, and it was time for Winnie to revisit the clinic for a checkup and ultrasound to make sure nothing remained in her womb. During her ultrasound she found that her baby had not been aborted — Winnie was still pregnant! The pills did not seem to “work.” Winnie was so upset by this, she wept and was led into a separate room by the doctors and nurses to evaluate the next steps.
Winnie was told that if she kept her baby, it would have deformities and never live a normal life. Winnie was pressured by the team of physicians to have a follow-up abortion. She was reminded of the horror and pain she had felt emotionally and physically when she had taken the pills.
“I just knew I didn’t want to go through what I had already gone through the first time,” she said. Then Winnie opened her phone and was reminded of a text her mother had sent her a couple weeks prior. It was the verse Romans 8:5-6: ‘Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.”
Immediately Winnie felt the fear of the Lord. She knew she had to keep this baby. After the appointment, Winnie and the father of her child went home and wept, begging God for mercy and for a healthy baby. Winnie contacted a pro-life hotline and was connected with a woman who led her step by step to the right team of doctors. “A lot of doctors would not touch me. Even my own doctor who knows who I am would not touch me.”
Winnie ended up going to three separate doctors and was considered high-risk. But despite what the doctors had said, God’s faithfulness remained. Winnie gave birth to a healthy, 100% intact baby boy on July 25th, 2018. “He’s extremely intelligent, above the curve,” Winnie said. “He’s dedicated to the Lord and I know God has a mighty purpose for him.”
Although Winnie’s mother and the elder knew nothing about Winnie’s pregnancy, they listened to God and her son’s life was saved. Winnie told the crowd, “I just want y’all to know if someone had been outside the abortion clinic that day to nudge me in the right direction I would have stopped and turned around.” Winnie emphasized how she feels it is important to be a prayerful presence outside abortion facilities, to hold signs encouraging women to choose life, or even to share a Bible verse with women who are experiencing an unexpected pregnancy.
Winnie ended her speech with a final, and powerful statement, saying, “I have been on both sides and I can tell you the struggle of motherhood is nothing compared to the struggle of guilt, shame, and overwhelming regret of killing your baby — so don’t do it. The Lord is good, merciful, and compassionate, and loving beyond measure — and my son is evidence of that.”
Mark Lee Dickson is a Director with Right to Life of East Texas, a Pastor of SovereignLOVE Church in Longview, Texas, and the founder of the Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn initiative. Nicki Allen is a pro-life advocate and private piano teacher who resides in Lubbock, Texas.
Visit Abortion Pill Rescue for information on abortion pill reversal.
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