LAKE CHARLES – The 28th annual New Life Counseling Pro-Life Banquet, featuring keynote speaker Gianna Jessen, will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 2, in the Lake Charles Civic Center Coliseum beginning at 6 p.m. with the doors opening and a silent auction followed by the banquet at 6:30 p.m.
Tickets are $75 each (Friend of Life) with a variety of sponsorship offerings including Life Saver $5,000; Champion of Life $3,000; Sustainer of Life $1,500; Advocate of Life $800; and Supporter of Life $600. The annual fundraiser sustains the operations of New Life Counseling’s pregnancy resource center from year to year.
Gianna Jessen was intended to die before she was born – the survivor of an abortion at seven and a half months. Talk to her for just a few minutes and she’s likely to punctuate every sentence with a deep, infectious laugh. Talk to her for a while longer and, as her story unfolds, it becomes apparent that the constant joy has overcome unspeakable challenges. In many regards, her life has been a short path littered with obstacles at every turn: challenges, betrayal, and cruelty. But for every setback, there have also been invitations into the greatest halls of government. A life that was never meant to be has been used to inspire, and even save others.
She entered the world two months premature and weighing just two and a half pounds and spent her first couple of months in a hospital. The failed abortion had also provided the “gift” of cerebral palsy, as she calls it: “It allows me to really depend on Jesus for everything.”
It also labeled her a hopeless case—an infant who was a ward of the state and for whom the expectations of achievement were extremely low. Doctors predicted she would never even lift her head. She showed them: walking at three, Jessen has grown into a woman who has run marathons.
For a voice that was never intended to speak, it not only speaks and sings, it laughs. Why? “I am honest, with myself and with Jesus. To the point where one might mistake my honesty for irreverence,” she said. “But I would rather risk that and give Him my truest self than live life thinly veiled.”
New Life Counseling, thus far in 2018, has 742 visits to the center by women in need, of which 145 were abortion vulnerable coming in for pregnancy testing and seeking a potential abortion procedure. After counseling and in-house ultrasound services, 135 chose life!
All other visits were from mothers in need of either maternal and child aid, participation in our "Earn While You Learn" program, "Woman 360" mother/daughter chastity workshop, "Forget Me Not" natural pregnancy loss group, or "Life after Choice" abortion recovery program.