By Marlene Downing, Director, Hope Pregnancy Center
Wednesday January 23, 2019 held the reality of a horrific day in history. This was the day after lawmakers devastated not only the state of New York, but also the nation with a bill that allows abortion up until birth. It was not like any other day. The atmosphere was heavy with constant reminders plastered on social media platforms.
I drove up I-95 to the sound of life-affirming music. Yet, the tears would not stop flowing as so many questions about humanity bombarded me. After I pulled into the parking lot at Greater Exodus Baptist Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, I stepped my foot out of the car and sucked in my last tear in an effort to pull it all together for the day ahead.
I then turned the key and opened the door to the HOPE Pregnancy Center Philadelphia. Performing one small task after another, I turned the lights on, opened the blinds, and turned on the Keurig. I unlocked the doors to each office beginning with the first counseling room and lastly the Ultrasound room. Peace began to fall as the phone calls came in and I prayed for the day ahead.
If these walls could talk, the unassuming building nestled next to Greater Exodus Baptist Church- where the founder, Rev. Dr. Herbert H. Lusk II, has touched the lives of thousands–would say “Don’t lose HOPE!”
The building has seen women plagued with fear, hopelessness, uncertainty and shame and watched as volunteers and workers have turned these feelings around. This has happened over and over for 10 years of service in the North Philadelphia community.
If these walls could talk–they would tell you that your work in a Pregnancy Center and any life affirming organization is surely not in vain. This building would speak to the fact that the fight is far from over!