The Paw Print
On Thursday evening, April 11, the San Luis Valley Women’s Resource Center hosted a very special event. Over 300 guests came to Alamosa’s River of Life at the Assembly of God church for a fundraising banquet, followed by guest speaker Gianna Jessen.
The story Gianna Jessen tells is a powerful one. Jessen was the survivor of a saline solution abortion. After eighteen hours of being burned with solution inside the womb, Jessen was born alive and just over two pounds. Jessen credits Christ and the nurse who called an ambulance and got her to the hospital for her survival.
After spending the first few months of her life in the hospital, Jessen was placed in the foster care system. It was there that Gianna found a grandmother figure in a woman named Penny, whose daughter eventually adopted her into her family. Since that time Jessen has become a strong Christian who has a contagious sense of humor and a very high standard for her life. One of the most poignant moments of Jessens’ speech came when she related how she met her birthmother. Full of anger and regret, Jessen’s birthmother called her a “disgrace to her family.” Jessen simply responded, “Ma’am, I’m a Christian. I forgive you.”
Due to the abortion attempt, Gianna Jessen has had to overcome enormous physical challenges as well. She was born with cerebral palsy. Doctors said that Gianna would never walk; however with Penny’s help, she was eventually able to walk and has even gone on to complete two marathons. Jessen calls her cerebral palsy “a gift,” because it gives her more opportunities to tell people about Jesus.
The evening began with everyone in the recreation hall of church for dinner. A prayer was said over the evening and the meal was served. Upon the completion of dinner and dessert, everyone moved to the sanctuary for the rest of the program. The introduction was given by Cheri Crowder, the director of the San Luis Valley Women’s Resource Center, who gave an update on what had recently taken place at the center, including the new club formed here at Adams State.
After Mrs. Crowder’s introduction, Gianna Jessen took the stage and gave those in attendance a highly encouraging message. After concluding her remarks, Jessen issued a challenge to audience to give generously to the center. After escorting Jessen to where she would meet and greet guests as well as sign programs, Pastor David Daniel gave the closing prayer.
The San Luis Valley Women’s Resource Center has many services available. In addition to free pregnancy testing, the center offers STD testing, post-abortion healing resources, as well as parenting classes for new fathers and mothers. The center is located at 3211 Main Street and has the hours of 2-5:30pm Monday through Friday.