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I hadn’t been practicing the faith for years, but decided to stop into a church one afternoon to light a candle.

On my way out, I paused to look at the brochure rack. There was no one around and on an impulse, I pulled one called “Hope and Healing After Abortion” off the rack. Hope, healing; two words that I never considered when I thought about my own experience of abortion so many years ago.

I shoved the brochure in my purse and went home. That night I took it out, read it, and learned that the Sisters of Life host retreats for women who are suffering after the experience of abortion. I had no idea that this was available and that healing was even possible. The experience of my abortion was like a room in my heart that I tried to avoid at all costs and had not visited in almost 40 years. This brochure
slowly opened that door until I was ready to receive the mercy God wanted to give to me.

Yet, many years had passed and I didn’t feel ready to look at the experience, so I put the brochure away in my closet. Every several months, I would take the brochure out and look at it. Each time I read it, I was more and more open to the possibility of healing. After three years, I made a major move, I took the brochure out of my closet and placed it on my coffee table so I would see it more frequently. For
months I would pick it up, read it and think, “maybe today I will call.”

After several months of working up the courage, I made a phone call to inquire about a Day of Prayer and Healing. The voice of the Sister on the line was much kinder, warmer, and gentler than I had ever imagined. She welcomed me and encouraged me to attend the day. Finally when the day came, I arrived early and parked my car outside and watched as other women entered. I still was not 100% sure that I wanted to be a part of it. Finally, I took a deep breath and
walked to the door.

The Day of Prayer and Healing was the opening of a new world for me. It was as though the room that had been locked up for decades was slowly opened, and a new, pure, healing light swept through it. I met other women who understood my experience, who shared my sorrow, but who had great hope and trust in God. I went to confession and received communion; it was a moment of
overwhelming peace.

When I left to go home at the end of the day, the Sisters asked me, “Did you have a good day?” I responded, “The best…it was one of the best days of my life.” I have found peace, healing, and a love I never knew possible.

-“Ann’s” testimony

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