You’ve probably heard the phrase, “Desperate times call for desperate measures.” Pregnant single moms in Cambodia… end up having abortions because they feel like they have no other choice.
Extreme poverty drives them to eke out an existence in the muddy slums outside Poipet. Each morning, they cross the border into Thailand with thousands of their peers, searching for enough money to make it through one more day. Says Kurt Dillinger, founder of LIFE International, “When you have a couple of children, and you’re hardly able to feed those two, and then you become pregnant: it becomes extremely difficult.” Abortion seems a better alternative to putting one more child at-risk of trafficking and exploitation.
Through the Hope Centre, pro-life Cambodian Christians are offering scared mums-to-be another option. The idea for a Hope Centre grew out of LIFE International’s pro-life training held in 2009. At their training sessions, LIFE International staff works through God’s design for life, marriage, and family with national church leaders. They also discuss what happens when people live outside that intended plan, and how things like STDs and abortion factor in. From a new-found place of freedom, church leaders share what they’ve learned with their congregations and communities.
Officially opened in 2013, the Hope Centre shines as a beacon of Gospel light amid the slums outside Poipet. “So often, the Gospel does such powerful work in their hearts. When they come
to know Jesus, there’s a hope. There is new energy; you can see the change in their eyes, and they understand that God is able,” Dillinger shares. “We hear of miracles all the time: how God has helped–once they make choices for life – how God helps, every step of the way, through all of the challenges that they face.”
In an impoverished village about four miles from the Hope Centre, national staff met “Botum” – a young mum caring for her newborn and three-year-old son. Along with Botum’s mother, they’re
squatting on a piece of land outside Poipet with no running water, no toilet, no kitchen, and no money. A few months ago her husband left without warning. “Here she was: without a husband, pregnant, living in a little hut [with] a plastic roof,” says Dillinger. “She thought, ‘There’s no way I can have another baby; I need to abort this child.’”
Learning of Botum’s decision, her mother spoke up: “Remember that abortion is a sin. No matter how difficult it is, we need to give life to this baby.” After further discussion, Botum conceded and gave birth to a healthy baby girl a few days ago. According to LIFE International, she has returned to the Hope Shelter.
Source: Mission Network News
Bible Study: Psalm 139
PRAISE God that Duval and these young people have experienced the mighty power of God.
PRAY that these young people from difficult backgrounds will stand firm in Christ’s might.