Kristan Hawkins is the dynamic president of the pro-life organization “Students for Life of America.” Since being hired by SFLA in 2006, Kristan has worked tirelessly to help increase the number of campus pro-life groups in the United States from 181 to almost 700, more than tripling the amount of groups in a few years.
Kristan’s been a voice for the unborn since she began volunteering at a Pregnancy Resource Center during her sophomore year in high school. She later started the first pro-life group at that school, along with the first pro-life group on her campus at Bethany College in West Virginia. Along with championing projects aimed at ending abortion, Kristan is also a wife and a mother to two boys.
The book, Courageous: Students Abolishing Abortion in this Lifetime, is Kristan’s labor of love. Throughout her years doing pro-life work, she’s encountered brave, selfless young people whose stories have inspired her. This book is a collection of remarkable tales that had to be told.
Last night, 40 Days for Life National Director David Bereit hosted a webcast promoting the book’s release. Featured were Jason Jones, the co-executive producer of the pro-life film Bella, and the young people whose stories fill the pages of the book. Kristan shared the horrific fact that in the 40 years since abortion’s been legalized, we’ve lost an entire generation. This book, Courageous, has true stories of a generation of survivors. Kristen stated that this generation is the most pro-life generation in 40 years. She’s sadly seen young people get a bad rap, often seen as unreliable and apathetic. This book is an introduction to incredible young people, ones who courageously stand for life.
The first guest on the webcast was Jason Jones – co-writer of Bella and creator of iamwholelife.com. Jason wrote the forward for Courageous. He declared that this generation will work to see full legal protection from birth to natural death. He poignantly said, “This generations in a position to end abortion … the one thing young people need is courage.” Although he knows that the faculty and administration at many schools in our country seek to silence students on the issue of abortion, he encourages students to keep talking.
Jason shared a powerful story of speaking up about abortion at a community college in Hawaii. He was driven to talk about abortion from his personal experience, which is covered in the book. The girls in his college class grew weary of hearing him talk about abortion and would throw paper balls at him. When they begged him to stop talking, Jason said he would if they would promise to never have an abortion. The girls said out loud that they promised to never have an abortion. Jason kept his side of the deal as he still continues to be outspoken about abortion. Years after graduating, Jason ran into one of the girls, who told him she’d gotten pregnant and her boyfriend and mom took her to get an abortion. Before she entered the clinic, she remembered the promise she made Jason years ago and ran away. As she talked to Jason that day, she had a child with her. She introduced him to the child and said, “Meet your promise.”
The second guest, Billy Valentine, policy and program director of the Susan B. Anthony List, talked about his fight to defeat pro-abortion politics and elect pro-life heroes. His story is further told in the chapter of the book called “The Politico.” Chaunie Brusie was the third guest, whose story is revealed in the chapter “The Pregnant Student.” She mentioned the high number of abortions taking place among college-aged women and their need for resources and role models. Caroline Pilgrim, the fourth guest on the webcast, is featured in the chapter called “The Sister.” Caroline talked about her past history as a medical student and her desire to see pro-lifers in the health care field. She wants the world to recognize the pre-born as patients who deserve care.
Steve Macias, West Coast regional coordinator for SFLA, was the fifth guest on the webcast. His story is told in the chapter “The Un-Expecting Pro-Life activist.” He spoke of the need for men to have a voice in the battle for life. Julia Pritchett followed him as the sixth guest; her life work is mentioned in the chapter “The Sidewalk Helper.” When Julie witnessed a junior high student being forced into a clinic by her grandparents, she realized she had to speak out on the sidewalks. Julia said the act of abortion is cowardly, and it must be ended through courageous love. Andrea Artz, the seventh guest, was adopted as a child and later gave her daughter up for adoption. Her story is featured in the chapter “The Adopted Daughter and Birthmother.” Melissa Pereira, the eighth guest, whose story is featured in the chapter “The Survivor,” is a young women who survived the traumatic abuse of a father who wanted to abort her. The last guest, Rebekah Berg, whose testimony is in the chapter “The Exception,” was a victim of rape, who declares that what the media tells us about children conceived in rape simply isn’t true.
To listen to these powerful stories yourself, go here. You can also download a free chapter from the book and get 20% off the purchase price. To buy the life changing book, go to www.courageousthebook.com. There’s even an e-book verison for your Kindle for just 4.99. As soon as the webcast ended, I purchased an e-copy. I’m only a few pages in, and I’ve already wept and been challenged to stand for life.
In closing, Kristan said:
It’s such an honor to include all of these stories. This book is dedicated to this generation and it’s courageous young people. My goal is to get this book in the hands of every pro-lifer to inspire them to keep marching forward as we are about to commemorate 40 years of legalized abortion on Jan 22, 2013.
Fifty-five million children have been murdered in our country. Yet, as Kristan declares, there is still hope for change. Heroism is having the courage to do what’s right, even against seemingly insurmountable obstacles. These stories will encourage you to make a difference, save lives, turn the tide, and abolish abortion in your lifetime. Buy the book, join the pro-life movement, and be courageous!