What launched Mary Wagner’s radical decision to risk jail for the unborn?
TORONTO, June 16, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Mary Wagner is a soft-spoken, slender young woman. She’s beautiful, gentle as a flower, innocent as a lamb, and nonetheless willing to contradict laws forbidding pro-life witness outside abortion centers.
She’s ready even to go right into the abortion mills to offer help and love to the women in the very waiting room of the abortionist. She knows full well that the police will soon come to drag her away, often not gently. She knows too that the hatred and invective thrown her way by staff at the abortion mills is real and in her face. She could get hurt, she is hated, she is ridiculed, she is thought to be insane, she is - with the Grace of God - ready to die.
Her actions have cost her numerous arrests and frequent imprisonment.
Wagner revealed in a talk at the annual Toronto Pro-Life Forum Saturday one of the incidents that led her to her extraordinary calling.
It was an experience with a 16-year-old pregnant girl that changed Wagner’s life from a pro-life activist who volunteered at a pregnancy centre to where she was willing to walk into the very abortion mills to give a last option for life to abortion-bound women.
At only 24 years of age herself at the time, Wagner counseled the young pregnant teen who lived on the streets with her boyfriend. The boyfriend was urging her to abort and she saw it as the only option for her. After a month of work with the girl, Wagner was distressed to learn that the 16-year-old was pursuing the abortion. The girl’s mother told her she had had an abortion and it was the best decision of her life.
The day of the abortion came and Wagner decided to meet the young woman outside the abortion mill when her young friend was to be there. She came with her boyfriend, but then Wagner felt inspired not to leave her to go in, but to go in with her and continue to urge her to reconsider. The time for the abortion came and the 16-year-old went in.
Wagner noticed the other women in the mill awaiting their own appointments and felt called to reach out to them in love as she was to her friend. “You don’t have to do this,” she told them. Overheard by staff, she was surrounded by them and shouted down when she attempted to speak until police arrived.
She was arrested and spent the afternoon in jail. Rather than discouraging similar actions, the incident marked the beginning of Wagner’s conviction to follow in the footsteps of Canadian pro-life heroine Linda Gibbons.
While that was the circumstance that led to her current mission, the strength to carry it out comes from somewhere else. Asked where by LifeSiteNews, Wagner replied, “Jesus said ‘in the world you will have trouble, but take courage I have conquered the world’. We have to ask Him for it (courage).” Sometimes, she added, “we have to say ‘God You’re asking this of me, You’ve got to give me what I need to do this.”