PBS100Y: The Mission

FIXME General outline:

  • Inspiration re: why are we here?
    • Open with a testimony of someone who changed their mind on abortion in your community
“There is a difference between passive goodness and active goodness, which is, in my opinion, the giving of one's time and energy in the alleviation of pain and suffering. It entails giving out, finding out, and helping those, who are suffering and in danger, and, not merely in leading an exemplary life in a purely passive way by doing no wrong.” - Nicholas Winton
  • The problem
    • Lack of law
    • (can also pull info from “reforming our movement…”)
    • Briefly, the stats and the history
    • Facing the victims

OR Canada150 video: https://vimeo.com/349086213

  • The woundedness of our culture
    • Abortion's shockwaves
    • We need to be pro-life ambassadors who approach this issue with knowledge, wisdom, and character.
  • The classroom
    • “Our purpose…” with links to relevant sections
    • Give you a grounding in pro-life apologetics and dialogue so you can change hearts and minds through conversation (include testimony video(s) from CC?)
    • Give you a grounding in pro-life strategy and politics
    • You can join us as we work to end the killing in Canada
      • Your campus, where students are statistically most likely to get abortions, and where the next generation of leaders is being formed…
      • Your high school, where students are beginning to face the choice of abortion…
      • Your city, where individuals every day are at best ignoring abortion–and at worst, considering it or planning it.
  • Strategy: A Vision Zero for the abortion rate
    • Goal: Our mission is to make abortion unthinkable in our community
    • ETK Plan
      • The vision is an abortion-free Canada, bringing the abortion rate to 0
      • In order to do this, we need three complementary efforts
        • Pastoral: make abortion irrelevant by providing support
        • Political: make abortion illegal by changing the law
        • Prophetic/Educational: make abortion unthinkable by educating the public and changing hearts and minds
          • The success of the pastoral and political arms depend on the success of the educational, because unless we change hearts and minds on abortion, we won't have the votes to pass pro-life laws, and people won't accept support through a difficult pregnancy instead of simply choosing abortion
          • That's why our focus is educational: to make abortion unthinkable
    • Mission: Our job is to do our local part to end the killing — to make abortion unthinkable in our community
      • We need to make abortion impossible to ignore, engage in regular, engaging and visible outreach that will reach everyone in our communities
      • We need to present clear reason (human rights apologetics) and compelling evidence (AVP) so that we can actually change hearts and minds
        • Our job is not simply “raise awareness” or “win” arguments, but to change hearts and minds
        • Our job is not to gather pro-lifers in a room to play volleyball or have pizza together, but to go out and engage a pro-choice culture in our community and to shift the culture in our community against abortion
      • We need to be efficient and effective, focused on presenting the best evidence possible in a way that will reach the most people, fastest
        • We can't just squirt a watergun at a wildfire, we need to employ serious street-tested apologetics and time-tested strategies of successful social reform movements of the past
      • This is why we need to reach everyone in our community with human rights apologetics and abortion victim photography in order to make abortion unthinkable in our community
        • HR apologetics: share the HR argument and a testimony from your community
        • AVP: we are employing the strategy of successful social reformers of the past, like the British abolitions, the National Child Labour Committee in the US, or the American civil rights movement
    • Theory of Change: Working backwards from the goal
      • Everything that we do is in the service of this mission, working backwards from the goal
        • In order to make abortion unthinkable, we need to make abortion impossible to ignore and reach everyone with AVP and human rights apologetics
        • In order to reach everyone, we'll need to employ regular, engaging and visible activism
        • In order to run regular activism effectively, we'll need to make sure that our team is trained and equipped for effective outreach — this is the focus of our meetings
        • In order to have a healthy team, we need to build a sense of community and become friends — this is why we hold regular socials
      • Everything that we do is in the service of the mission of making abortion unthinkable in our community
      • This is also why we encourage people to gain valuable and life-changing experience with pro-life projects outside of our community too!
        • Promote the Abortion Awareness Project trip in Florida (on the next big upcoming opportunity to get activism experience and training)
  • Close with a testimony of a mind changed in your community, and invite people to practice active goodness by getting involved with your group and applying for AAP


Our Cultural Context

  • :?: Do you know the law in Canada?
  • :?: Do you know how many abortions happen in Canada each year?
  • What does this tell us?
    1. This is not a charitable cause; this is an emergency. 275 children were decapitated, dismembered and disemboweled in our country today.
    2. Our culture is deeply wounded – it's safer too assume and probably more likely when talking to someone on campus that they've had an abortion experience or that a friend or loved one has than that they're untouched by abortion.

Being an effective ambassador

Key point: We need to change people's attitudes about abortion so that this human rights violation becomes unthinkable, to change how people feel and think about abortion so that they will act differently towards it.4)

But, given the cultural context – the emergency, the woundedness – we need more than just moral arguments.

  • Aristotle on persuasion5)
    • ethos (credibility): we tend to believe people whom we respect (Collins: build a bridge) – hands
    • pathos (emotional) (Collins: touch the heart) – heart
    • logos (logical): persuasion by use of reason, argument (Collins: deliver the message) – head
  • Qualities of effective pro-life ambassador6)
    • knowledge (logos/head) – science, evidence, reason
    • wisdom (pathos/heart) – how to communicate the knowledge that we have
    • character (ethos/hands) – everything we say and how we say it is complimented by who we are. If we talk about respect, we need to show respect. If we talk about love, we need to show love.
“Whom you would change, you must first love, and they must know that you love them.” -Martin Luther King Jr.

FIXME concrete examples…pick 1 or 2

We must…

  • convert the unconvinced (head)
  • activate the converted (heart)7)
  • train the active to work effectively (hands)

How our club models this too

  • Head: we grow our knowledge through…
    • weekly seminar discussions on apologetics, strategy, politics, in bioethics, biology, moral philosophy, medicine, law, history, etc.
    • pro-life speakers series, bringing great speakers to our club members
  • Heart: we stretch our hearts through…
    • approaching the issue from this posture, as ambassadors reaching out to a wounded culture
    • dialogue: a strategy of outreach that emphasizes dialogue and relationship with our peers on campus, to change hearts and minds in order to save lives – being “right” isn't enough
      • listening
      • asking good questions
      • not just knowing what to say, but how to say it
    • heart apologetics: being conscious of the heart and mind of a woman in a crisis pregnancy, and of post-abortive woundedness
  • Hands: we lend our hands through…
    • putting our ideas and our empathy into action
    • this is not a charitable cause, this is an emergency – emergencies demand action
    • weekly activism
    • weekly volunteer outreach
    • getting active off campus, e.g. TRTL Speakers Bureau, March for Life, etc.