A Derry mother who was told that she’d be making the best decision for her baby daughter by having an abortion, says she would have missed so much joy and happiness if she had made that choice.
Bronagh Parke was speaking in Guildhall Square today with her 19 month old Sophia, to back the pro life group Precious Life, which was launching its ‘Your Vote Matters’ campaign.
“Sophia was diagnosed at 23 weeks with only half of her heart developed,” she said.
“I was told she would have a long struggle and continuous hospital stays. We were devastated.
“But abortion never crossed my mind.
“I was asked - what quality of life is she going to have, and told I’d be making the best decision for her by ending it now.”
She explained that Sophia was born at 38 weeks - and has since had four open heart surgeries and a pacemaker fitted.
“We have had so much support,” she said. “We were actually told she would be in hospital for the majority of her life and she would never get home, but she is home with us.
“She is a wee fighter and she amazes us every day.
“My point is, if I had chosen abortion it would have mentally scarred me.
“If I’d had an abortion we would not have experienced such a different outcome to the one we thought was for her.
“And she has brought us so much joy and happiness.”
Yesterday a group of people gathered at Guildhall Square to join with Precious Life as it launched its election campaign for Northern Ireland.
Bernie Smyth, founder of the pro life group said: “We are in Derry today to launch ‘Your Vote Matters.’
“In Derry you have a massive battle ahead of you in the election.
“This is our time.”
The group were distributing leaflets in homes, churches and towns across Derry saying they want to inform voters of each political party’s policy on abortion and to ‘name and shame’ every MLA who voted in support of Alliance MLAs Trevor Lunn’s and Stewart Dickson’s failed proposal to legalise abortion of unborn children with life-limiting disabilities on 11th February 2016.
“The Alliance Party, the Green Party, and Sinn Fein will not rest until abortion is legalised for reasons of an unborn child’s life-limiting disability,” said Bernie Smyth.
“Between now and the next election in five years’ time, there will be another attempt to change the law.
“That is why we are urging the people of Derry/Londonderry to vote only for the political candidates who will not cower in the face of ferocious pressure to legalise the killing of disabled unborn children but will stand strong in his or defence of all unborn children.”
The group are encouraging local people to take part in Red Letter Day on April 29 for unborn children.
“We need you, your family and friends to bombard political candidates by phone, email, facebook, twitter or by calling into their offices and asking: ‘If elected, will you defend the right to life of all unborn children.’” they said.
For more information on the ‘Your Vote Matters’ campaign or to collect leaflets, please contact 02890278484 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.