September 19 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print

8-SPUC-ROADSHOW

Message must be heard

SPUC SCOTLAND offers an insight into pro-life events held by the organisation—including its national conference and the Project Truth Summer Roadshow—and its disappointment at the removal of its stall at Dundee University

SPUC National Conference

Over the first weekend in September I had the privilege to attend my first National SPUC pro-life conference. This was an opportunity not only to connect with other staff members and supporters of SPUC from around the world, but also to be reminded of the importance and need for a strong pro-life presence in society.

Each and every talk brought a deeper realisation of the scale in which abortion is affecting not only Britain but the world as a whole.

Obianuju ‘Uju’ Ekeocha was the first speaker whose courage and conviction of her pro-life views galvanised Nigeria into standing with her, in a protest against the movements that were being attempted by their leaders and western authority figures to turn Nigeria and Africa into pro-abortion nations. Uju, who is a biomedical scientist, expressed great distress at how the culture of life that was so deeply ingrained in her beloved Nigeria was being undermined by the western culture of death. At one point she expressed how in her village when a child was born it was not just a joy for the immediate family but for the whole village. In introducing abortion and contraception Uju pointed out that life would no longer be celebrated in the same way and that the strong foundations of healthy appreciations of relationships, marriage, parenthood and love would be undermined and depreciated.

Uju stated that while the West was willing to pour out money into ‘helping’ Africans it was a very different type of help that they needed or wanted. The HELP (Health, Education, Life and Peace) that Uju pointed out that Africa was in need of was that which would enable individuals, families and communities to thrive and grow in a way that celebrated life and gave everyone a peaceful future. Her words gave me a real appreciation and yearning for the type of community spirit she spoke of and it was a reminder of how important the pro-life fight is in preserving not only the life of a mother and child but also the integrity and structure of the community as a whole.

There were many other talks that touched and inspired me, but one which had a particular impact on me was the talk delivered by Antonia Tully, national coordinator of SPUC’s Safe at School campaign. As a teacher I am aware of how

susceptible children are to the views that are fed to them by their educators. It is also a time in their lives when the healthy formation of their emotional and mental wellbeing is paramount in order to set a firm foundation for how they relate to and build healthy relations with others. Antonia’s talk opened my eyes to how our government is exposing and pushing on children an increasingly destructive view on sexuality that does not nurture a healthy view of relationships and self. The talk gave me an awareness of how in attempting to ‘protect’ children by educating them on sex our government is confusing and undermining not only them but also the role of the parent.

During our ARCH workshop I was also afforded to opportunity to gain some excellent insight into the struggles that people face in breaking the silence and stigma surrounding those who have suffered from abortion. We discussed bringing the issue to the table in such a way that although women could acknowledge that abortion was wrong that they could still realise that there was healing, hope, forgiveness and love in the future for them.

Margaret Byars-ARCH

 

Hostility to the pro-life message at Dundee University

On our arrival back from the conference, we were met with the news that SPUC had been banned from running a stall at Freshers’ Fayre. The SPUC Dundee branch ran a stall for eight consecutive years, from 2005 onwards, with no problems or complaints. This decision shows that there is growing hostility towards the pro-life message, especially on university campuses.

“This ban does not only affect SPUC,” Julie Allison who is a member of the Life Society said. “It affects the affiliated Life Society at the university. We have been threatened with unaffiliation if we are found to being using any SPUC materials at the freshers’ stall. SPUC have been a great help to us and many of our members attend their annual youth conferences. DUSA’s ban on SPUC and all their materials has put a strain on the affiliated life society at Dundee.”

Across the UK, the Alliance of Pro-Life Students has helped students defend their pro-life position on campus, because they are becoming more intolerant to the pro-life voice. There is a deep contradiction in our society, which prides itself on being open to all points of view, because whist trying to hold this position it unashamedly tries to silence one side of the discussion. Thankfully the pro-life student movement is filled with convicted and courageous young people, who will not allow the pro-life message to be silenced in their place of education.

Rachel Kidd-SPUC Scotland

 

Project Truth Summer Roadshow

August 2014 saw the first ever pro-life roadshow take place in Scotland. The Project Truth Roadshow team consisted of 11 young volunteers who wanted to spread the pro-life message across the country. We visited five cities the length and breadth of Scotland to spread the pro-life message, equipped with pro-life literature, lollipops and balloons. The team consisted not only of experienced pro-lifers, but also those who were sharing their pro-life beliefs for the first time.

The roadshow brought new zeal to pro-life activism in Scotland and helped get the facts about the development of the unborn baby to a whole cross section of society who had never heard these facts before.

“The experience was very insightful, observing people’s reactions when we invited them to sign our pro-life petition to protect the unborn,” Michael, a Project Truth member said. “Almost all had never had such an experience before, or contemplated the issue to a large extent. Many were amazed not having heard such information before, and were grateful for our efforts to inform them.”

Many people we spoke to had simply accepted that abortion is legal, but had never stopped to think about the humanity of the child in the womb and the affect that abortion has on woman, men and families who have made this choice. This just shows that it is crucial we are bringing the pro-life message to the public, because they will not hear it elsewhere. Sometimes all it takes is for someone to bring up the subject and present the facts.

At SPUC Scotland, we are always looking for volunteers to help us work to protect the most vulnerable members of our community and bring the pro-life message to society. If you would like to become a White Flower speaker, help organise speakers for your parish, get involved with distributing our Pro-Life Times or even spend some time volunteering in our Glasgow office your help would be very much appreciated.

—Get in touch with SPUC on 0141 221 2094 or e-mail leonora@spucscotland.org.

Leonora Blackhall-SPUC Scotland

 

http://www.spucscotland.org

 

 

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