“One Sunday after church a lady came up to me,” Prince said, “and she said I want you to see this baby. And she said I want you to know this baby is only alive because of your church members. Some of our members had reached out to her at a time when she was thinking about aborting her baby, and they said, ‘We will financially help you through this whole process and we’ll be there for you, to serve you.’ So this lady said, ‘My child is only alive because of the way your church members have served me.’’’
At Prestonwood, Jamieson has been in women’s ministry two decades and credits God with giving her a heart for ministering to women. The Prestonwood Pregnancy Center – with locations in Richardson and South Dallas and a mobile clinic – has 36 staff members and attracts about 140 volunteers each year. The center received a total of 19,943 visits from about 1,200 clients in 2021, Jamieson said.
“I understand for a lot of our clients, there’s a lot of just difficulty and heartache. They have a lot of struggles, and there’s just a compassion,” Jamieson said. “And just the offer for them to do better, that there is a better way (than abortion), and there’s a better option, and to watch the Lord do miracles, is a privilege. It’s a privilege to be able to sit across from a woman and have her trust you.”
Ultrasounds, pregnancy testing, guidance counseling and classes on topics including fathering, relationships and the cost of parenting are among services at the pregnancy care center. The resource center will add services needed after a woman or family chooses life, Jamieson said, including professional Christian counseling; a boutique with pregnancy clothing, diapers, cribs, strollers, baby clothing and clothing for children through age 4 or 5; and classes in childbirth, parenting, lactation preparation, prenatal and perinatal care. The resource center will be open to anyone in the community in need, in addition to Prestonwood Pregnancy Center clients, all at no cost.
A crisis pregnancy creates uncertainties for women who have grown up in the era of Roe v. Wade., Jamieson said.
“A lot of times people think that when a woman comes to a pregnancy center and she sees the baby on the sonogram that that’s when the decision for life happens, and often we do see that. We see that woman see her child or hear the heartbeat and the wall, the barrier to parenting, comes down,” she said. “But sometimes, it’s a longer process than that.
“We continue to work with our women from the moment they call us until well after birth, whether that means through ongoing meetings with the nurse or client advocate, to encouraging them to be in classes, we call and check in. We have a schedule when we touch base with them, so that they’re not lost.”
Serving expectant mothers in crisis requires patience and care.
“When a woman has been abortion vulnerable, it would be very unwise of any of us to think” all of the mother’s concerns will be resolved. “Even after choosing life, she’s still somewhat vulnerable. We want to continue to remind her of why she made that decision and do that through contact, and that’s another beautiful thing about the resource center, is it gives us one more reason to continue (the relationship).
“There’s something anticipatory for a mama as that child is being knitted together in her womb by the Lord, there’s something that’s nurturing and nesting to be able to think about the preparation for that child, and it actually is bonding.”
This article originally appeared on BaptistPress.com.