Editor’s note. This appears on page two of the current digital edition of National Right to Life News.
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NRLC 2019 lives up to its reputation as the pro-life educational event of the year
If you’ve already begun to page through the July digital edition of National Right to Life News, you already know there is close to a dozen stories about NRLC’s annual convention that took place July 5-6 in Charleston, South Carolina, and tons of wonderful photos taken primarily by Lisa Andrusko, NRLC’s Yearbook editor, and Karen Cross, NRLC’s Political Director.
I’m fully aware that not everyone who wanted to attend the pro-life education event of the year could make it to the Palmetto State. That’s why we’ve posted story after story in NRL News Today as well as make the convention the focus of this issue of the “pro-life newspaper of record.”
But you should also know that there is a “next best thing” to being there. Starting July 29, MP3s and CDs will be available. MP3s will be $5, CDs are $8 individually. Bulk rate for CDs 10+ are $7.50 each. We will post reminder in NRL News Today. (If you are not receiving our daily potpourri of news, commentary, interviews, and reviews, sign up at nationalrighttolifenews.org/join-the-email-list.)
From the first general session the morning of July 5—“A Time to be Encouraged”– until the closing banquet the night of July 6—“Nourishing Life at the Roots–Replenished, Rejuvenated, Renewed and Ready!”–attendees were offered a veritable smorgasbord of educational entrees. Jacki Ragan, our convention director, proudly (and correctly) says there is always “something for everyone.”
In fact there are many “somethings,” from nuts and bolts how-to sessions about how to maximize your social media, to dealing with the IRS, to the basics of Parliamentary procedure all the way over to stunning personal stories of triumph and tragedy overcome.
For many people, the Saturday night banquet that ends the annual NRLC Convention is the highlight of their two-day stay.
After attending many of the 40+ workshops and other powerful general sessions, attendees see the dinner as a chance to relax and reflect on everything they have taken in.
It would difficult to imagine a more appropriate closing set of speakers than Chloe Kondrich and her dad, Kurt Kondrich. Although having just turned 16, Chloe–the inspiration behind the Down Syndrome Prenatal Education Act [“Chloe’s Law”] in Pennsylvania—travels from one end of this country to another, embodying the message “Embrace, don’t erase” Down syndrome.
This ambassador for equality and her dad wowed the audience. (The line up to take pictures with Chloe was very impressive. At the conclusion of the first general session, pro-life South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster got in line. Later, at another general session, she met with Ashley Bratcher, the star of the pro-life movie, “Unplanned.”)
Kurt recounted the Kondrich family’s history. Of how he and his wife Margie were older when Margie became pregnant with their second child. (By the way, watching Chloe and Nolan, her older brother, interact while their dad spoke, was priceless.)
In 2003, Kurt was in his 20th year as a police officer and having delivered a baby on the sidewalk 17 years before, he knew it was important that they hear a strong crying sound (Chloe aspirated during the delivery).
Within five minutes of the delivery, the signs from the physicians were not encouraging. One doctor said Chloe had “characteristics of Down syndrome.” Not knowledgeable about what that meant, Kurt said, “Can I hold my daughter, please?” He responded, “Yes, do you want to hold her?”
As Kurt wrote, “I detected surprise in his voice, but Chloe looked right into my eyes, and I instantly fell in love with this precious gift God had given our family.”
The rest, as they say, is history. They’ve traveled seemingly everywhere, testifying against this “prenatal genocide,” meeting with President Trump and Vice President Pence, and becoming the face of “Embrace, don’t erase.”
As Kurt told NRL News Today,” I know and believe with all my heart and soul that this is the mission with Chloe’s Foundation that God created our family for, and He is using us as His instruments for this historic LIFE movement.”