Dana Hall McCain’s introduction to Southern Baptists relates directly to those she met during her years as a volunteer for a pregnancy resource center in Dothan, Ala.
As a member of the Resolutions Committee, McCain’s passionate response Tuesday night (June 15) to a proposed amendment for a resolution on abortion tied to messengers. The amendment, in effect, would have considered women who have abortions as “murderers”.
âI share your passion for ending the scourge of abortion. Excuse me if I’m moved about this, âMcCain said, her voice faltering as she explained how conversations with the women of the Wiregrass Hope Group had impacted her.
Before volunteering with the center, McCain admitted, she would have been in agreement with the passage of the proposed amendment. âHowever, what the Lord showed me sitting in these rooms in front of broken women is that many of them fell victim to the sins of others,â she said. Such actions included not only generational sin, but also having parents “who never took them to church and preached the gospel to them like mine did to me.”
“Spirit of Christ”
âYes,â she continued, âabortion is a sin, and one of the things we pass on to these women when we love them, care for them and serve them is that l ‘The gospel of Jesus Christ is the truth about the sin of abortion, and we call them to repentance. But I also tell you that when we take a punitive and harsh stance on women who are at a crossroads – which the sin of many people has generally led them to – we do not have the mind of Christ towards these women. “
Heavy applause met McCain’s testimony. The amendment failed and the resolution was adopted. The next day, a resolution calling the abortion “murder [of] a preborn image carrier “passed after being presented from the ground. This resolution, however, did not call women who seek abortions murderous.
“which changes life”
McCain, a member of the First Baptist Church in Dothan, separately told Baptist Press how volunteering at the center “was life changing.”
âI have always been a person of deep convictions and deep passions,â she said. âFor me, the issue of abortion has always been extraordinarily black and white. But once I started to interact with the average woman who seeks an abortion, the Lord humbled me in many of my assumptions about their lives and the amount of free will they have to make a good decision.
A list of features has taken shape among its customers. The woman lived in poverty. She did not have access to quality education or health care. She did not grow up in a nuclear family and was often raised by a grandmother.
Another common factor emerged, one for which McCain admitted she was unprepared.
âIt has emerged time and again that many of these vulnerable women have also been victims of sexual abuse and assault,â she said. âIn these unstable family structures and within the poor community, children are so vulnerable. Again and again stories [of abuse] included mom’s boyfriend, a sleazy uncle or that guy living with grandma.
The image of a healthy, biblically orthodox understanding of sex and of God’s purpose for the family was essentially destroyed for these girls at a young age, she added. “It became very difficult for me to look at the woman in front of me with a story like that and to have anything other than deep compassion for her.”
âThis pregnancy was often the result of abuse and the guy was waiting outside in the car. These girls were practically sneaking up to talk to us while he tried to get her in the car and go to Tallahassee “to take care of it”.
McCain, a writer with signatures in publications including al.com, the Birmingham News and the Montgomery Advertiser, had to give up volunteering a year ago to help with her husband’s affairs. She stressed that the sin of abortion needs to be addressed, but we also need to see these women for what God created them to be.
âWe must help them learn to be good Christian parents, but also to know the salvation offered in Christ,â she said. âSo many people are starving for it. These conversations have radically changed my perception of how to view women who find themselves at a crossroads. Their unborn child is loved and created in the image of God, and so is she.
Reprinted from Baptist Press (www.baptistpress.com), information service of the Southern Baptist Convention.