Faith Notebook: When the unheard is heard, and the unseen is seen

Gianna Jessen

Gianna Jessen

Gianna Jessen has a story that few in the world can tell. She was born alive in a Planned Parenthood clinic whilst her mother was undergoing a saline abortion. She was seven and a half months pregnant. Gianna puts her survival down to the fact that the clinic's doctor was not yet on duty when she was born and a nurse had her transferred from the clinic to a hospital.

The procedure caused her to have Cerebral Palsy with seemingly little hope of walking later on in life.

After some difficult time in foster care, Gianna was eventually fostered by a woman named Penny who showed her much love and encouragement. Penny's daughter Diana adopted Gianna when she was four years old. Despite original medical opinion that she would not walk, Gianna grew in strength and now walks with just a slight limp. She is an engaging, articulate woman in her thirties with a beautiful singing voice who has spoken in many places about her experience, including the House of Commons and Congress.

She talks about the importance of her Christian faith when telling her story, and about how she has been able to forgive her biological mother.

Gianna told the Telegraph, "Gently I put the question, if abortion is about women's rights, then where were mine? There was no radical feminist screaming for my rights on that day." Gianna was born in 1977 in Los Angeles County.

Just over thirty years later, in a Planned Parenthood clinic a few states away another woman had an experience which changed her attitude to her work  completely.

Up until a few weeks ago Abby Johnson was a director of a Planned Parenthood clinic in Texas. Then one day she saw an ultrasound of an abortion. Whilst watching the ultrasound she had a sudden realisation of what was happening in front of her, and a change of heart.  She told the KBTX television station, "I just thought I can't do this anymore, and it was just like a flash that hit me, and I thought that's it". It was the first time she had seen such images on ultrasound, even though she had been involved with the clinic for some years as a volunteer and then as its director.

Abby resigned from Planned Parenthood on 6 October and is currently involved with the pro-life group Coalition for Life. There are a number of organisations in this country that offer much-needed compassion, support and practical help to women who are going through crisis pregnancies or who have had abortions. Gianna and Abby's stories hardly need any comment, except to say that it is important that their stories are told because through them the unheard is heard, and the unseen is seen.
To see Gianna on Youtube visit:

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