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Jackson Students for Life is making a difference

Thank you to Jan Hoffbauer for submitting this article.

Dec. 7, 2010 - Almost 30 students have joined the Jackson Students for Life (SFL) organization to support the prolife movement. These students are doing whatever they can to make their presence known.

Jennah Sailor, Jackson Community College (JCC) student believes that life begins at conception and should be protected.

She said, "life is a precious and miraculous gift from God. I long to help others understand that abortion is not the answer. SFL work to help the unborn and we work to help the mothers who feel they cannot provide and care for their unborn children."

The first year the group was formed the SFL at Lumen Christi High School in Jackson, collected over 10,000 diapers for pregnancy resource centers.

They have been ridiculed when they joined in the prolife Day of Silent Solidarity. Christen Houck, Eastern Michigan University student said 12 students made their presence known by handing out almost 4,000 fliers. The students pressed red tape with "LIFE" written on it across their mouths to show their support for the unborn.

Christen added, "a few students chanted 'abortion and pro-choice.' Others made comments about 'infringing upon woman's rights' and threw the fliers into the trash."

At Lumen Christi people were supportive and asked for a piece of tape to join. Ally Emmert, a student there said she had several of her friends join her.

Ally's sister Maggie, also a member of SFL, said, "many people take for granted the fact that their mom could have chosen abortion but they didn't."

Dominika Piotrowski, another Lumen Christi member shared, "I feel I can help more people think about what they are doing before they do it and for those who have done it and regret it, to talk to them and tell them that God forgives."

Cecilia Berkemeier, a senior at Lumen Christi, is the current president of SFL. She commented, "one of the most empowering movements is the March for Life in Washington, DC. It gives me hope for a future where abortion is no longer socially, legally, or medically acceptable."

SLF is making plans to attend the March in January. Another JCC student will be transferring to another college and hopes to start a group there. Michael Doyle said he plans to attend the March for Life for his third time. He said his main goal is outreach in the community.

Three sisters who are founding members and have been home-educated share their feelings. Sarah Bassett said, "it is important because it is the only group I know of that is formed for the purpose of advocating for the unborn and vulnerable."

Sarah's sister Kaitlyn is dual-enrolled at JCC and Spring Arbor University (SAU) and said, "it is important because it is a visible witness to the value for human life."

Their older sister, Patricia, who attends Hillsdale College said, "it has given me the opportunity to stand as a witness to my generation's increasing awareness that without the right to life no other rights are material."

Rachel Slocum, a student at SAU, was one of the founding members three years ago. She said, "I was born with a heart defect which makes me a miracle child. There are thousands of unborn babies like me who are not being given the opportunity to live. I started a group at SAU because I think it is time for the young people of America to take a stand for life, we are the future leaders of America and we need to start leading."

The students are led by Kathy Potts and Cindy Smith. They say the students run the organization, but the students share the same sentiments about their leaders.

At the most recent Jackson Right to Life dinner Kaitlyn Bassett praised their adult advisers and said, "Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Potts are the motivation, the organization, the inspiration and brain-power behind SFL. Their enthusiasm and die-hard passion is contagious; they have infected us with the prolife virus."

Cecilia Berkemeier also shared, "no single person can change the world by themselves; people must work together to create a true and lasting change. SFL is a way for individual students to come together to fight for the protection of life at all stages."

These students and their advisers are doing whatever they can to educate and be advocates for life, from conception until natural death. Please join them in this battle. For more information please go to the Jackson Right to Life website at www.jacksonforlife.org.

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