An archdiocesan office has released a free, comprehensive guide to area pregnancy resources, as part of a mission that’s “more important than ever,” said the project’s manager.
“Peace Be With You: Pregnancy Care-Related Resources,” a 94-page booklet compiled by the Office for Life and Family (OLF), lists an extensive array of supports throughout the five-county Greater Philadelphia area; Berks, Lancaster, Lebanon, Lehigh, Northampton and York Counties; southern New Jersey; and Delaware.
Assistance spans pregnancy testing, pre- and post-natal health care and education, housing assistance, baby food and other supplies, counseling, job training, professional development and spiritual care.
Many locations – such as archdiocesan Catholic Social Services’ family service centers and Cenacle – offer aid in both English and Spanish.
A number of resources for those grieving a miscarriage or seeking post-abortion healing are also included in the booklet, which is available in both print and electronic form.
Parishes are encouraged to make copies of and distribute the guide to raise awareness of the resources, said OLF director Steven Bozza – admitting he was surprised but delighted at the number of agencies and organizations represented.
With the Supreme Court’s June 2022 ruling against a federal right to abortion, “the advent of the post-Roe era demands this (booklet) from us,” said Bozza. “We wanted to be able to get this to every parish, into the hands of every area Catholic, so they could say to women in crisis pregnancies, ‘Look, there is a place for you to get the services you need.’”
Bozza said “abortion-minded women” are in many cases “resorting to abortion because there’s nothing else for them. Their families have left them, the (father) left them, and they think, ‘Now what do I do?’”
The booklet’s exact “trajectory is unknown,” he added, noting that faithful who pick up or download the guide will ultimately be the ones to get it to those in need.
In particular, said Bozza, women will likely be the primary agents in disseminating the booklet through one-on-one interactions.
“We can’t underestimate the power of the feminine genius,” he said. “St. John Paul II used that term in a different context, but there’s another meaning here. Women talk and share with other women.”
“You might have a woman going to Mass on Sunday who sees the booklet or the QR code for it, and then maybe she encounters a neighbor in a crisis pregnancy,” he said. “She can take that book and say, ‘There is a place for you.’”
“Peace Be With You: Pregnancy Care-Related Resources” is available at no charge from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s Office for Life and Family, and may be freely reproduced and shared widely.
To download a digital copy of the booklet, click here.
To order a free printed copy of the guide, click here.
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