Standing on the balcony of Bakersfield's abortion chamber, Geraldine and Mike filled out paperwork, preparing to sign away the life of their child. From the sidewalk, Terri* tried to help the couple understand the heartbreak of losing a baby. "I just miscarried my eleventh child," Terri shared, "and this breaks my heart because I know that this will be hard for you to handle." Geraldine and Mike never responded to Terri, but she knew that they were listening.
After several minutes on the balcony, the couple re-entered the abortion chamber waiting room, as Terri prayed that God would use the words she had spoken to touch their hearts.
An hour later, Geraldine and Mike walked out, telling Terri that they were keeping their baby. Offering the couple a teddy bear, Terri said "this can be your baby's first toy."
"I knew you guys would change your mind," Terri said. "I was praying for you."
A few days later, Terri called to see how the couple was doing. "We're happy about it now," Mike laughed. "This baby is a blessing."
Too young to drive, "Alejandro" and "Melania" (only 14 and 15) found a friend to drive them to Bakersfield from their home in Lost Hills so that their child could be killed, hiding Melania's pregnancy from their parents. As they arrived at the abortion chamber, a group of ladies from St. Augustine church in Lamont began to talk to them about their situation. One of the ladies ran across the street to the LifeHouse, asking Terri to bring the portable DVD player so that the young couple could see the video showing what would happen to their child. In addition to showing the couple a video about abortion, Terri showed them the video testimony of Tracy, who almost aborted her child last year because she was afraid to tell her parents.
Opening her Bible to Psalm 91, Terri asked Alejandro and Melania "is it ok if I pray this psalm for you?" After reading and praying Psalm 91, Terri encouraged the couple, saying "whatever is scaring you is the devil. Satan has no right over this baby this is God's baby. God loves you more than anyone else does."
One of the other Christians on the sidewalk began to cry, sharing with Melania the pain she felt over aborting her child when she was 16. "I remember it to this day, and you will remember it too," she said.
"You will feel the weight lifted off once you talk to your parents," Terri encouraged the couple, "that's what happened to the girl I showed you on the video. Even if you go ahead and have the abortion you're going to need your mom to be there for you."
As the couple began to walk away from the abortion chamber, "Circe" was just leaving the abortion chamber after aborting her baby. "It's only your choice, just ask God and he will forgive you," Circe called out to Melania.
Circe's words seized the hearts of Alejandro and Melania, stopping them in their tracks.
"I believe that you are being a tool of Satan right now," Terri said to Circe.
"I love the Lord," Circe countered, "God knows my heart."
"Jesus said if you love me you will keep my commandments," Terri responded.
Circe tried to physically intervene to bring Melania inside, but Terri stood between Circe and Melania, preventing Circe from pulling Melania into the place of death.
Terri began to cry hysterically, telling Circe, "If you've already had the abortion, I'm sorry. We'll be there to help you too."
"I did it, and I'm not sorry! That's between me and the Lord," Circe insisted. "It's not for you guys to judge. I'm the only one who can judge. Do you have the resources to help her 24-7? How do you know if she is capable to take care of this kid when she's sick? You're a [expletive] hypocrite!"
Raising her arm toward Terri, Circe shrieked "the Lord says if I strike you, turn your cheek!"
"You just had an abortion; you're not thinking right," Terri cried. "You're gonna miss that baby."
Circe admitted that she already missed her baby, "it hurts, lady, but I had to make my choice. We're trying to better ourselves so we can get into a better house."
When Circe finally turned to leave, Melania and Alejandro immediately began walking to their friend's car, leaving the killing center with their child still living in Melania's womb.
Terri and the others praised God for saving this child, exhausted from the emotional strain of the experience. "It was like there was a satanic hold on her," Terri said.
*LSM team member