‘Game changer’: High school students see the miracle of life through live ultrasounds

ultrasound, viability, abortion

A pro-life ministry in Omaha, Nebraska, has found an innovating new way to reach the next generation. Heart of a Child Ministries has been using ultrasounds to show people the humanity of preborn children within the womb. Founded by Bernie and Nikki Schaefer in 2012, the ministry offers ultrasound presentations, along with pro-life prayer pillows, to help build a culture of life.

One of their recent presentations at a Catholic high school was highlighted in a story in the Omaha World-Herald. Haley Lubeck, who is 24 weeks pregnant, sat for an ultrasound conducted by Angela Himmelburg, a professional sonographer who graduated from the University of Jamestown and University of Nebraska Medical Center. Himmelburg narrated throughout. “Can you see the eyes?” she asked, then pointing out, “Here’s an arm right here… there’s a foot digging into the placenta.”

READ: Abortion doula has unexpected emotional reaction to her own child’s ultrasound

Focus on the Family has also used ultrasounds to try to change hearts and minds, and even hosted a live ultrasound presentation in Times Square last year. Approximately 20,000 people watched what Paul Batura, vice president of communications for Focus on the Family, described to the Omaha World-Herald as a “game-changer,” explaining that the ultrasounds serve as “a window on the womb.”

Video of ultrasound from Highschool presentation at St Joseph’s Springfield,NEWatch as baby hiccups, swallows and heartbeats.

Posted by Heart of a Child Ministries on Thursday, March 5, 2020


Along its ultrasound presentations, Heart of a Child Ministries also gives scientific information about fetal development. The group’s goal is to fully illustrate the indisputable humanity of children in the womb.

Each presentation is tailored to the specific age of the students attending. “My kids loved it. I felt like they did a great job explaining things at their level,” a first grade teacher said in a testimonial on the ministry’s website. A third grade teacher added, “The students were totally entranced with the presentation and the live ultrasound. The ‘props’ (seeds) made it so much easier for the kids to understand. The small groups were phenomenal and explained everything so well. And who doesn’t like gifts?… rosary, baby, brochures. Wow! So awesome! GREAT presentation!!”

The subject of abortion is not brought up until seventh or eighth grade, in specific middle school presentations.

“Seeing the live ultrasound made me want to cry,” said Liv, a seventh-grader, in a testimonial on the website. “It is so undoubtedly amazing how something only 17 weeks old is circulating its own blood, has working organs, and continuously moves around. Hearing the baby’s heartbeat is the most amazing thing. It shows that it is more than just a lump of tissues and cells. It is a baby and it is fully alive.”

READ: Supreme Court upholds Kentucky ultrasound law


In addition to school presentations, the group offers presentations for adults as well, often hosted by Nikki Schaefer, who has a master’s degree in social work. Schaefer has also worked for pregnancy resource centers, as well as in art therapy and parenting groups with pregnant and parenting teens. During adult presentations, she focuses on seeing the heart of each child, and what the ministry calls “the three pro-life calls of prayer, action and truth.”

Showing young people the truth of humanity of the preborn is a unique, powerful, and positive way to help create a new generation of pro-life activists.

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