Embrace Grace & Mary’s House: Sylvia’s Story

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by L’Anne Sciba

hen I first met Sylvia* she came to Mary’s House for a free pregnancy test. She’d already been to the abortion clinic and received the abortion pill. Now two months later, she realized she still might be pregnant. What if the pill hadn’t worked – she already had young twins at home.  Horrified, with a hurricane of whirling thoughts filling her mind, she thought the peer counselor at Mary’s House might hold a glimmer of hope for the next thing to do… at least she could find out for sure if she was pregnant.  She was.

Medical care is very important and a plan for Medicaid and a doctor’s care was addressed first. At the same visit, Sylvia was invited to join Embrace Grace, a 12 week course, hosted by Mary’s House and the Cathedral of St. John Berchmans. On the first night of class, Sylvia nervously rang the doorbell hoping for help from complete strangers. Was this a waste of time?
Week after week at class, Sylvia listened to stories of how women in similar circumstances let go of chains of resentment and un-forgiveness; she learned that the lies and wounds she carried around with her could be replaced with God – that made her feel better. As Sylvia prayed to God, He began healing areas in her life that created problems for her.

Little by little, she began to recover her sense of humor, and began to have small hopes and dreams. Then she took baby steps of action. By the time the Baby Shower at St. John’s was held, Sylvia had a new vision of herself, what her future could be with God in her life and her parents were so grateful for the change in their daughter.

It’s been one year since Sylvia came to Mary’s House that first time.  In that year, after having her baby, working at a steady job, talking with her parents, investigating possibilities and adjusting ideas, she has a solid plan for her future and her children.  Her parents are a big support and encourage her as she enrolls in college. Sylvia will be successful because she knows God guides her in His commandments, through family and people in the Church and in daily events. She is never alone because she trusts God who says: “Yes, I know what plans I have in mind for you.” The Lord declares, plans for peace, not for disaster, to give you a future and hope.

The vision of Embrace Grace is for every girl in an unplanned pregnancy to have a church to go to for spiritual, emotional and physical support. Its mission is to inspire and equip the church to love single and pregnant girls.

If you have the love of God and determination to  host Embrace Grace at your parish for single and pregnant young women, visit EmbraceGrace.com, or call Mary’s House for more information. Be Pro-Life. Be Pro-Love.

*not her real name

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