I’m on my way to Washington, D.C., today for tomorrow’s National Prayer Breakfast and a host of meetings with key influencers. Before doing so, though, I wanted to share a few thoughts on the first ten days of the new administration.
Last night President Trump made good on his campaign promise to nominate a constitutionalist in the mold of the late Antonin Scalia to the Supreme Court.
Immediately following the announcement, I posted the statement I sent to the media, where I share my sense of optimism surrounding Judge Gorsuch’s commitment to boldly stand up to the whims of culture, and have, to quote the late Justice Scalia, “the courage to suffer the contempt of the sophisticated world.”
I’m not the only one praising the pick. Here’s a quick rundown of what other Christian leaders – people who are concerned about the preborn, religious liberties, and judicial overreach – are saying:
- Christian intellectual Robert P. George, in the Washington Post: “Gorsuch’s combination of outstanding intellectual and personal qualities places him in the top rank of American jurists. If confirmed, as I expect him easily to be, he will certainly be a good justice and has the potential to be a great one.”Dr. George, who personally knows Judge Gorsuch, also painted a picture of a scholarly, gracious man who engages others with humility and respect.
- Russell Moore: “His career is one that exemplifies the very best of intellectually robust conservatism, judicial restraint and faithfulness to the Constitution.”
- Al Mohler: “I am very encouraged by the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch … this nomination is right for the Court and right for the times.”
- Michael Farris, founder of the Home School Legal Association and recently appointed president of Alliance Defending Freedom: “Given Judge Gorsuch’s extensive experience as a judicial law clerk and as a federal judge, he is no stranger to the legal issues that ADF litigates. In particular, he has decided many cases involving religious freedom … ” Farris shared some examples, including Judge Gorsuch’s concurring opinion in favor of Hobby Lobby’s contraception mandate exemption.
But Judge Gorsuch’s nomination isn’t the only reason why pro-lifers are hopeful about the current opportunities to save more lives. We’ve also seen this administration open its doors to advocates of the preborn in a way not seen in years.
Take the recent White House pro-life reception as an example. Held on the eve of the 44th annual March for Life, I and other pro-life leaders were able to talk with Vice President Mike Pence, who has been a lifelong advocate for life. During our short time together, the Vice President personally affirmed the administration’s commitment to work on behalf of the preborn.
And the next day, Vice President Pence shared that pledge to care for the preborn with the entire country when he became the first vice president, and the highest-ranking government representative, to ever speak in person at the March for Life.
And while pro-lifers were buoyed by the administration’s support of the world’s flagship pro-life event, we already had an inkling that President Trump intended to keep his campaign promises as it relates to life. In fact, during his first week in office President Trump had reinstated the Mexico City policy, which affirms life by blocking the United States’ international funding of abortion to non-governmental organizations that provide abortion counseling and referrals, or that advocate for the decriminalization or expansion of abortion.
Yet in the end, the ultimate reason that pro-lifers can have hope is centered in God’s faithfulness to bless and increase our work, and to change the hearts of those who oppose life.
That’s what we’re seeing here at Focus on the Family through our Option Ultrasound Program, which provides grants to qualifying pregnancy medical clinics that cover 80 percent of the cost of an ultrasound machine or sonography training for medical personnel.
Because of Option Ultrasound, moms considering abortion can see their babies and hear their heartbeats. This moving experience changes hearts and saves lives. Since the program’s inception in 2004, we’ve helped save more than 382,000 babies – and are on track to making the 400,000 babies saved milestone in 2017!
And we’re only able to do this because of people like you – everyday pro-lifers who generously give to our program in order that preborn babies might be saved, and women who are facing an unexpected pregnancy might receive loving support and practical help. For example, at a special dinner in Washington, D.C., last week as part of our Evangelicals for Life conference, we raised enough funds to secure an additional three ultrasound machines!
So thank you for all you’re doing for life: your prayers, advocacy, and financial support. Even during the discouraging years under a pro-abortion White House, you’ve remained steadfast in your support of life. And because of that, we made important strides – even without the support of elected representatives in the administration.
But now it seems we’re experiencing a new morning for the pro-life cause in America. I pray we can make more progress in this life-affirming administration – and I hope you’ll continue to join us in working toward that noble goal. If you’d like to donate to Option Ultrasound and work with us towards the 400,000 babies saved milestone this year, please know that your gift of $60 will help save a baby. You can donate online.
I’d like to hear from you: Were you encouraged by last night’s nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court? Why or why not? What are your hopes for the future of the pro-life movement? Let me know in the comments section below.