You can do this! We are here to encourage you and cheer you on!
Here are some steps to get you started:
1. Check out the abortion facilities in your area and find out the days and times they schedule abortions. Schedule your Christmas Caroling Outreach on a busy day during the time when most of the women would be arriving at the abortion facility. You could even schedule two mornings in December and visit several abortion facilities on each day. Chances are, after people have tried it once, they’ll want to do it again! Pick a meeting location for the morning of the Caroling Outreach that is close to the first abortion facility.
2. Invite your friends, family members, youth group and your entire congregation to join you. Promote the event in your community. Recruitment Handouts and Church Bulletin Inserts are available for you to duplicate.
3. Involve your local pro-life groups, youth groups and churches by asking them to collect baby items for the gift baskets. The Church Bulletin Inserts includes a list of suggested baby items needed for each basket. Put out a large decorated box for collecting the donated baby items for several weeks before the event. Also, set out an eye-catching container — like a large baby bottle — for money donations.
4. Recruit people to help on the day of the event:
- Song leaders - Who will lead the caroling and assemble the Caroling Songbook in advance.
- Sidewalk counselors - If possible, recruit experienced local sidewalk counselors to help in this area. Contact crisis pregnancy centers to see if they can recommend some. Spanish speaking counselors are very helpful if the facility is in an Hispanic area. For more help on sidewalk counseling, refer to the Survivors’ Sidewalk Counseling Manual.
- Police liaison - Designate a person to be the official representative to talk with police if necessary. This person can also be on the lookout for any other potential problems.
- Videographer and Photographer - to capture memorable moments and to record that your group is acting peacefully and lawfully.
5. Order the recommended literature for the gift baskets and sidewalk counseling during the event (see Literature – What and Where to Purchase). If the abortion facility is in an area with a large Hispanic population, make sure to order Spanish literature too.
6. Purchase any items not received from donations. Purchase supplies for assembling baskets and purchase gifts for the abortion facility staff. The Los Angeles abortion facilities are very busy and we average ten to fifteen baskets per abortion facility. The dollar store is a great place to pick up many of these items. In addition to the items listed on the Church Bulletin Inserts, you will need:
- Clear cellophane
- Clear cellophane gift bags
- Tissue paper
- “Before It’s Too Late” brochure
- “Early Human Life” card
- Personal Gift Basket Note
- Scissors, hole punch and tape
7. Locate a local Pregnancy Help Center, (you can look in the yellow pages under abortion alternatives), that you can refer women entering the abortion facility to. Include the Pregnancy Help Center’s contact information on the sidewalk counseling literature that you hand out.
8. Plan a get-together to assemble the gift baskets and wrap the abortion facility staff gifts. This is also a good time to pray for the event. Items recommended for the baskets are included on the Church Bulletin Insert.
Basket Assembly Instructions
- Place crumpled tissue paper at the bottom of each basket, before the baby items are added.
- Neatly arrange the baby items for a pleasant presentation.
- Include the “Early Human Life” card (Spanish and English) with the baby items.
- Wrap each basket with cellophane and ribbon so that the baby items can be clearly seen in the basket.
- Hole punch and attach with ribbon the “Before You Choose” brochure and personal gift card with your local crisis pregnancy contact information.
- Wrap the gift and Christmas candy for the workers in cellophane or cellophane gift bags.
Day of the Event
1. Equipment and Supplies:
- Video camera/still camera
- Sidewalk counseling literature, “The First Nine Months” literature
- Gifts for abortion facility staff
- Gift baskets for the moms
- Caroling Songbook
2. At the meeting location:
- Introduce event leaders, including police liason and sidewalk counselors.
- Open with prayer.
- Define the event to participants including: The peaceful, prayerful attitude of event; what people should do; instruct about how to deal with angry people, abortion facility staff, police, etc.
- Introduce the song leaders and distribute songbooks.
- Assign camera and video detail (be discreet with camera so as not to intimidate women receiving gift baskets), sidewalk counselor(s) and 2 people to deliver gifts to the abortion facility staff.
3. At the abortion facility:
With gifts in hand, approach the abortion facility doors while singing carols. Have your designated gift bearers enter the facility to deliver the gifts to the abortion facility staff while the remaining carolers continue singing. The gift bearers should be cheerful and pleasant even if the staff is not. They are there to deliver Christmas gifts and share the love of Christ. Designate someone to hold the door open during the entire time these people are inside the abortion facility. Carolers should sing just outside of the door, and one person should be talking from the doorway to the women inside, encouraging them to leave and come get a gift basket. If the people delivering the gifts are asked to leave the facility, they should leave immediately.
Continue singing Christmas carols and watch for women approaching the abortion facility. When someone approaches the facility, offer them a basket. Only one person should try to engage them in conversation, preferably the designated sidewalk counselor. If the sidewalk counselor is engaged somewhere else, then another person should step up to talk to the woman. Offer every woman who enters the facility a gift basket and life saving information even if she says she is not there for an abortion.
Encourage the photographer and videographer to capture the event while being sensitive to the fact that women at an abortion clinic may not want to be photographed. Do your best to discreetly photograph and videotape the event.
Pray at each abortion facility at the conclusion of singing carols.