CINCINNATI — Although Lutherans For Life (LFL) has spent the last 25 years “convincing in love … [and] listening to the gentle whisper of the Holy Spirit,” many people still do not understand that abortion is a “billion-dollar killing industry” or “what abortion is and does.”
Dr. Jean Garton, co-founder and founding president of the pan-Lutheran pro-life organization, made that observation in her keynote address at the national LFL conference, which marked the silver anniversary here Nov. 12-14.
Garton told more than 200 people gathered for the conference that LFL is “committed to the truth.”
A member of the Synod’s Board of Directors from Benton, Ark., she said that many who promote abortion try to “disguise what is happening.”
“Truth: it’s a beautiful thing,” said Garton, after explaining that “Roe” of Roe v. Wade and the “Doe” of Doe v. Bolton — the two landmark legal cases that legalized abortion in the country for all nine months of pregnancy for any or no reason — at the time of those rulings were for abortion, but now speak out against it.
LFL President Diane Schroeder and Dr. James I. Lamb, LFL’s executive director, referred to the anniversary milestone in their presentation titled, “Building on the Beginning — LFL’s Future.”
“We have been the hand of Christ as we worked with caring pregnancy centers … [and] shown compassion to thousands of men and women burdened with grief who bought the lie that abortion is a quick and easy fix,” Schroeder said.
This was Schroeder’s first national conference as president of the organization’s board of directors. The board named her president last winter to succeed Linda Bartlett, who stepped down after nine years in the office.
Schroeder, of Lombard, Ill., previously was an at-large member of the board and served as treasurer.
Lamb encouraged the organization to “redouble our efforts until all life is accorded the dignity given it by God.”
“LFL has been growing to meet the changing world,” said Lamb. “God has certainly blessed LFL with resources to grow.”
He said that as LFL officers and members implement a recently adopted strategic plan, new materials are planned “in a variety of formats,” including a life-issues curriculum for Sunday schools, vacation Bible schools, and high schools.
The 2004 national conference also included worship, Bible study, and plenary and workshop presentations on the complexity of human life, the impact of recent elections, marriage, and genetics. Its theme was “In the beginning … was life!”
Based in Nevada, Iowa, LFL has 15 state or regional federations, 150 local chapters, and 745 “life-ministry coordinators” nationwide.
For more information, contact Lutherans For Life, 1120 S. G Ave., Nevada, IA 50201-2774; (888) 364-5133; info@lutheransfor life.org. Or, visit its Web site at www.lutheransforlife.org.
Information for this story was provided by Lowell Highby, LFL’s director of communications.
Posted Nov. 30, 2004