WEEKLY NEWS SUMMARY - September 18, 2019
In this week's Intersect, read about:
More than 2,200 Aborted Babies’ Bodies Found in Former Doctor’s Home
Investigators have found the remains of 2,246 aborted babies in the home of a deceased abortionist whose medical license was revoked in 2016. Ulrick Klopfer had practiced abortions in South Bend, Indiana, but had a home in Will County, Illinois. After he passed away September 3, family members were going through his possessions at that Will County home. They found the medically preserved fetal remains and alerted authorities. Reacting to the news of this gruesome discovery, March for Life President Jeanne Mancini said in a statement, “This tragic case bears a strong resemblance to that of Kermit Gosnell, who was convicted of murdering born alive infants slated for abortion. Like Gosnell, Ulrich Klopfer had a long and troubling history of ‘willful, intentional and detrimental’ noncompliance with state regulations and his disregard for those regulations intended to protect women and minor girls was appalling. He admitted to performing an abortion on a 10-year-old who he sent back into an abusive situation afterward.” Mancini added, “We urge a thorough investigation of this case so that justice may be done, and so that the public becomes aware of what really happens inside America's abortion industry.” read more
Last weekend, thousands of pro-life advocates met at gravesites for the unborn in the 7th annual National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children. Since the Roe v. Wade ruling in 1973, over 60 million lives have been aborted. Before Roe, there were back-alley abortions. We may never know the number of lives lost in those proverbial alleys, but we are beginning to learn what those future alleys might look like. The future of abortion is through online pharmaceuticals, a type of “do it yourself” abortion. One network alone estimates that they have administered at least 2,000 “medical abortions” in the past three years. As it stands now, anyone with an internet connection and a little cash can obtain the pills to have an abortion at home. This past week, pro-life advocate David Daleiden testified for the first time regarding the details he uncovered of Planned Parenthood’s fetal organ harvesting practice - participating in illegal trafficking of baby body parts. Daleiden and Sandra Meritt were charged with 15 felony counts of illegal recording of confidential communications. Daleiden said he believed this information needed to be brought to “the American people and to American law enforcement.” We encourage you to read more about all that he uncovered. We must remember, as Christians, we should do everything we can to protect these little heartbeats (Proverbs 31:8-9).
Pray that the abortion industry continues to be exposed. Pray for the brave voices, such as David Daleiden, to continue to speak out on the truth. Pray for Christians to have boldness to take action and not sit on the sidelines of an issue that is literally taking thousands of lives every day.
One of the best ways that we can stand for life is by rolling up our sleeves and getting involved with pro-life organizations. Take a few minutes to explore various opportunities listed on our website for you to get involved and take action for the sanctity of life!
California Legislature Approves Measure Criticizing Pastors For Not Embracing LGBT Identities
The California Legislature has passed a resolution blaming religious leaders and groups that support sexual orientation change efforts therapies for suicides and attempted suicides of those who identify as LGBT. In a party-line vote last week, the state Senate approved Assembly Concurrent Resolution 99, which demands that people of faith in the state change their approach to ministering to same-sex attracted men and women and others who identify as LGBT. The resolution, though nonbinding, was sponsored by Democratic State Assemblyman Evan Low of San Jose. The resolution calls religious views about sexual ethics that do not affirm LGBT identities “stigmatizing beliefs” that contribute to depression and suicide. The measure comes just over a year after AB 2943, legislation also brought forward by Low, would have categorized such counseling options as "consumer fraud." The legislation had been approved by both chambers and was headed to the governor's desk for signature before Low ultimately withdrew it amid public outcry. Since ACR-99 is a resolution, it requires no signature from the governor. read more
Unfortunately, this resolution isn’t the only bad news coming out of California. The California Legislature also passed a bill requiring public university health centers to provide access to abortion within miles of every UC and CSU campus in the state. This bill would create a fund to provide a $200,000 grant to every public university student health center to pay for the cost of offering abortion drugs, with money coming from state and federal government agencies and private sector entities. The legislation encourages health centers to offer abortion counseling services but specifically excludes pro-life counseling. Tony Sands, President of the Right to Life League of Southern California, shared with My Faith Votes that this bill is simply “irresponsible” and “bad law.” SB-24 isn’t about women’s health but rather, it is pushing an agenda and allowing state-sponsored abortion on public universities. Sands stated that the bill does nothing to respect and honor women and does not earmark funds to allow real choice. Instead, it gives the false idea that the best option, when faced with an unwanted pregnancy, is to kill the child, as it would have a “negative impact” on their life plans. Sands went on to say that this bill would open the state up to medical procedure liability. “Part of the reason it’s bad law is women who take this, if something goes wrong with this, who do you blame? Well, who you’re going to blame is the state.” The bill goes next to California Governor Gavin Newson’s desk to sign. The Governor already promised when he was on the campaign trail to sign this bill into law.
Pray for Christians in California to remain strong and continue to stand for biblical values. It’s clear that a spiritual battle is underway in California. God’s truth regarding gender, marriage, and the sanctity of life is being rejected, and lies are being promoted and funded at taxpayer expense. Pray for Christians in the state to rise up and go to the voting booth to protect biblical values.
Billy Graham once said, “For unless America turns back to God, repents of its sin, and experiences spiritual revival, we will fail as a nation.” For America to survive, we must be on our knees in prayer for California and for our nation. Take a few minutes to be encouraged by Intercessors for America Interactive Prayer Map. Know that when you pray for our nation, you are not praying alone!
Middle East Escalation: Iran’s ‘Unprecedented Attack’ on World’s Energy Supply
The attack on Saudi Arabia's largest oil processing facility represents a major escalation in the battle between Iran, Saudi Arabia and the US. Also, it has a direct attack on world oil supplies, global markets and the life blood of Saudi Arabia and follows Iranian attacks on shipping in the Gulf. The local paper is blaming the Houthis, the Iranian backed proxy that's been fighting a war with Saudi Arabia since 2015. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is laying direct blame on Iran. Pompeo tweeted, "We call on all nations to publicly and unequivocally condemn Iran's attacks." There is some speculation that it might have been a cruise missile from Iran or Iraq. The attack represents the potential for direct conflict between Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the US. CNBC reports that President Trump authorized release of oil from the US strategic petroleum reserve and that oil would be released if needed to keep up the supply. read more
According to Foreign Policy, we find ourselves in a Shadow War with Iran. Sama’s Al-Hamdani of Georgetown University writes: “Yemen’s war is a gift to Iran; Iran’s quiet manipulation…is a menacing power in the Arabian Peninsula.” The war pits the Yemeni government against Houthi rebels. Saudi, as well as the US, has backed the Yemeni government soldiers while Iran has backed the Houthi rebels. However, as the article indicates, the battlefield has no bounds. But why would Iran do this? Desperation breeds risk. Writing over at The Hill, Sam Faddis asserts that “our maximum pressure policy is paying dividends.” The Iranian regime is desperately trying to weaken American resolve and split the coalition. Iran’s economy is contracting at a rate of six percent. As the economy shrinks, prices skyrocket, with inflation climbing higher than 32 percent. The struggle with Iran is much broader than just economics; Iran is one of the most extreme perpetrators of religious persecution in the world. According to Open Doors, Christians live under constant oppression in Iran. House churches are raided, and Christians have been prosecuted and jailed for their faith. Still, Iranian Christians are witnessing one of the "fastest-growing underground church movements" in the world.
Pray for our leaders and our Iranian brothers and sisters in Christ. The situation with Iran is complicated, but the concept of prayer is simple. FB Meyer was right: “The greatest tragedy of life is not unanswered prayer, but unoffered prayer.” (1 John 5:15-16).
Consider getting involved to reach people in Iran by faithfully praying and sharing the Gospel through the sending of Bibles. We encourage you to connect with Elam, a ministry that focuses on strengthening and expanding the church in the Iran region.
Most Believers Say They Don’t Need Others for Discipleship
Over the past decade, more believers are heeding the scriptural call to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior”—but they’re often doing discipleship on their own. A wide-ranging survey by LifeWay Research found that while US Christians had made improvements in areas like reading their Bibles daily, prioritizing obedience to Christ, and avoiding temptation, their connections with fellow Christians have weakened. Hispanic and African American churchgoers may represent an exception to the overall trend, showing even greater progress in discipleship while deepening community ties. While the number of churchgoers spending time with other Christians to help them grow in their faith increased in the 2019 survey (47% in 2019, versus 42% in 2011), fewer than half of churchgoers (48%) agree with the statement, “I intentionally spend time with other believers to help them grow in their faith.” The same percentage of believers disagree with the statement as who strongly agree (19%). read more
Despite research indicating that people like us more when they have a chance to help us, we have an aversion to seeking out help because of the fear of rejection. But in reality, according to Heidi Grant in her book Reinforcements, not asking for help robs you of assistance and another person of joy. “We could make the argument that not asking for help is a selfish thing, in that it robs other people of one of life’s most reliable boosts to well-being.” And then there is doubting the quality of assistance. One experiment found that subjects consistently underestimated the quality of help they would generate. People were more patient with them and had a greater knowledge base than expected. In Scripture, we read how humans were made out of community and intended for community. As Pastor Tony Evans says, “Christ’s body, the church, is not an organization, but an organism. We can create a robot and have organization. The parts connect to each other so that it works. But the problem with the robot is that it has no life. It is organizationally connected, but it’s not a living being. A human body, in contrast, has organization that makes it function, but it also is an organism. It’s a living, breathing life. Connection in the body is necessary for function and for life, and it is essential if we are to leave a lasting impact and impression on our society and in our world.”
Pray for Christians in your community to connect with the body of Christ and actively seek discipleship within the church. Pray for God to show you ways you can engage in biblical community and encourage others to walk faithfully together to become more like Christ.
Take a few minutes to watch what Pastor Jonathan Pokluda, Pastor of Harris Creek Church in Waco, Texas, and hear what he has to say on why the church is vital to Christians. Think and pray today about what you can do to be more active in your local church.
Don't forget to grab your copy of Unplanned, the inspiring and eye-opening true story of former Planned Parenthood director Abby Johnson and her journey of transformation. Get your copy here.
My Faith Votes—is a nonpartisan movement that motivates, equips and activates Christians in America to vote in every election, transforming our communities and influencing our nation with biblical truth. By partnering with national faith leaders, My Faith Votes provides resources to help Christians Pray, Think, and Act to create an America where God is honored in the public square.