WASHINGTON, D.C., May 17, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Ultrasounds are one of the most powerful tools pro-lifers have to change a woman’s mind about abortion and help her embrace the sanctity of life, according to former Planned Parenthood director Abby Johsnon

Johnson is a speaker in a Tuesday, May 17 UNITEforLIFE webcast at 8 p.m. (local time) where she will tell the story of her journey from Planned Parenthood to a top right-to-life advocate.

Johnson told LifeSiteNews.com that Focus on the Family decided to sponsor the webcast as a way to bring pro-life advocates together, and not only to talk about the importance of pregnancy care centers, but especially about the “importance of ultrasound inside of those pregnancy care centers.”

She said that women who see the ultrasound of their baby connect with a powerful maternal bond.

“They see that it is a baby and that it does have a heartbeat,” she explained. “Just seeing the heartbeat is very powerful to a woman.”

Although Planned Parenthood says that abortion is “a wise parenting decision,” Johnson said that such a claim largely evaporates in the reality of the image of a mother’s baby on an ultrasound.

“In the abortion industry we could excuse away complications, we could excuse away the correlation of abortion with breast cancer, and all these other things,” continued Johnson, “but you cannot excuse the maternal bond a woman has with her child. And that is what ultrasound is providing for women and these children.”

Johnson said that most of the women coming into Planned Parenthood clinics are between the ages of 18 and 25, and are scared to tell their parents they are pregnant because they fear disappointing their expectations.

But Johnson, who had two abortions herself, says: “Sure it’s going to be disappointing that you got pregnant and this wasn’t what they had in mind. But do you think they are going to be more disappointed to know that or do you think that are going to be more disappointed to know that you took the life of their grandchild?”

“I tell girls that one of the hardest things for me was telling my parents that I took the lives of two of their grandchildren, and that is a very difficult thing to have to explain to your parents,” she said. “And one day that guilt is going to surface, and you are going to have to explain that to them, and it is going to be very difficult to you.”

Johnson said that the loss of state funding to Planned Parenthood in Indiana will be “devastating” and surmised that if Planned Parenthood lost funding nationwide they could lose 50 percent of their clinics.

The United for Life webcast is sponsored by Focus on the Family, and intends to fundraise and create awareness about the lifesaving potential of every pro-life pregnancy care center – so long as they have an ultrasound machine.

Donations and proceeds from the sale of a DVD documentary and Johnson’s book “UnPlanned” will be used to benefit the work of pro-life pregnancy care centers in the United States and Canada.

The webcast features other pro-life leaders from CareNet, Heartbeat International, National Institute of Family and Life Advocates (NIFLA), and the Canadian Association of Pregnancy Support Services (CAPSS), who will illustrate how their work helps women in need and choose life for their unborn children.