Sue Frantz and Nancy Enns of Shafter (California) MB Church are the two longest-serving volunteers at the Bakersfield Pregnancy Center (BPC) in Bakersfield, California. For over 25 years, they have served the nonprofit ministry that offers pregnancy tests, ultrasounds and other services related to pregnancy and pregnancy options. Sue shares some highlights from their work at the center.
What roles do each of you have as volunteers?
Nancy is the receptionist on Friday mornings, the first face women see when they come to the center. My shift is Thursday morning as a client advocate, trained to meet clients and use our info sheet to find out what she needs and how we can help.
How did you become involved with BPC?
After we had our first child I felt really convinced about the preciousness of life. I went to a couple of Right to Life meetings but wanted to do something more hands on rather than the political side.
How have the center’s services changed over the years?
Having the ultrasound has been a huge improvement. I get to go in sometimes as a witness to the ultrasound. It’s kind of like going to the Holy of Holies. There’s just a presence there.
How has the experience of volunteering changed you?
At first, I was focused on helping save the babies, but I soon realized it’s really the woman who needs to be helped and respected.
Tell us a story that motivates you in your volunteering.
A while back, a very abortion-minded client came in to get a test and an ultrasound to know how far along she was. She wanted the information so she would know what to expect with an abortion. The nurse put the doppler on her for the ultrasound and it was like God put a spotlight on the heart. It just glowed. It changed everything for her. Later she brought the baby in to visit.
What can Christians learn from people who work in this field?
Sometimes it’s easy for us as Jesus-followers to see that is abortion is wrong—to want to see laws change. Instead of being so much against something, we need to be there to help—to listen to these women and understand what is going on with them. We share the hope that Jesus gives and believe that when she is presented with truthful information and sees what’s inside her, a woman will make a decision for life.
Kathy Heinrichs Wiest is a freelance writer who loves the smell of whole wheat bread in the oven, the feel of an orange being plucked from the tree and the view from her front porch in Kingsburg, California. On Sunday mornings you’ll find her in the fourth pew from the front on the left at Kingsburg MB Church, moved by the hymns and praise songs and inspired by the stories of God at work locally and around the world. She and her husband, Steve, own Dovetail Remodeling. They have two grown daughters, one son-in-law and a precious granddaughter.