This week, the pro-life movement made history at the Supreme Court of the United States. Not by achieving a legal victory, but by making a powerful artistic and religious statement, speaking truth to power on behalf of the most vulnerable among us. Jason Scott Jones, president of the pro-life film company Movie to Movement, and Patrick Mahoney, pastor of Washington, D.C.’s Church on the Hill, held a screening of “Voiceless” on the steps of the Supreme Court.
“Voiceless,” a powerful new pro-life movie that opens October 7th in theaters across the nation (click here for tickets and locations), is unique among films of its kind. Other pro-life movies directly make the case against the Supreme Court ruling of Roe v. Wade, show the harmfulness of abortion, the value of life, and the urgency of the Gospel message in an increasingly amoral secular world. But “Voiceless” offers something different: An unflinching look at the dark, scandalous relationship that exists between the abortion industry and… the Church.
After all, it’s Christians who claim allegiance to the God who hears the cry of the poor, the vulnerable, and the voiceless. And yet, as “Voiceless” shows and recent polling data tragically confirms, too many Christians are silent.
The Abortion Coverup
After being discharged, military veteran Jesse Dean (played by Rusty Joiner) takes on a humble role at a small church in Philadelphia. Before he has a chance to settle in, a “women’s choice” clinic opens up directly across the street.
Jesse watches as women walk into the abortuary, often visibly agitated, frightened, confused. One teenaged girl crosses the street to ask him, tearfully, if he thinks she will meet her baby in Heaven. Moved with compassion and anger, it isn’t long before Jesse feels compelled to take action.
A new convert to the faith, Jesse nevertheless works up the courage to appeal to his church community about the situation, alerting them to the fact that the abortion mill performs between five and 20 abortions a day.
To Jesse’s dismay, his fellow Christians react with hesitancy, excuses, and even hostility—as if he were a whistleblower uncovering a truth too ugly for them to face.
What are We Doing About the Abortion Mill Across the Street?
Jesse’s situation is more than just a fiction. It’s an important truth that all Christians need to hear: We may not know it, but in reality there is an abortion mill across the street from our church. And our failure to do something about it is a scandal.
In fact, the Church is responsible for half a million abortions per year. And I don’t mean that metaphorically, but literally.
A recent study found that 36 percent of post-abortive women were attending church at least once a month at the time of their first abortion. You might think attending church would save women and babies from falling prey to the abortion industry. But 76 percent of women claimed “local churches had no influence” at all on their “decision to terminate their pregnancy.”
In other words, pastors and congregants are failing to minister to the unborn and their mothers, and it’s costing lives. How many lives? Well, the Guttmacher Institute reported last year that “Seventeen percent of abortion patients in 2014 identified as mainline Protestant, 13% as evangelical Protestant and 24% as Catholic….” That means well over 50 percent of abortion victims, or roughly half a million babies, were in the Christian Church.
So in a very real sense the Church is currently directly responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of unborn babies a year—to say nothing of our responsibility for the countless broken hearts of young parents. “The refusal to take sides on great moral issues is itself a decision,” Bishop Fulton Sheen once said. “It is a silent acquiescence to evil.”
To put it another, more urgent way: If all Christians were to speak boldly and go out of their way with hearts full of compassion for those facing unexpected pregnancies, we could be saving hundreds of thousands of lives every year.
“Voiceless” is a Great Movie, but It can be an Even Better Movement
Some audience members will get their first real whiff of the pro-life movement when the movie “Voiceless” hits theaters October 7th. And not everyone will like it. It has a smell of iron and blood and smoke, of harsh division and conflict. “Voiceless,” like the pro-life cause itself, smells of war.
At first it seems like nobody will join Jesse Dean in his effort to confront the abortion mill across the street from the Church. “I will not compromise this church over a fight that we cannot win,” growls Jesse’s pastor (played by James Russo), “and I will not allow you to do so either.” The pastor seems to agree with a church donor’s less demanding suggestion that the congregation just quietly “pray about it” rather than engage in “activism.”
But this isn’t about activism, Jesse argues. “It’s about being a voice for the voiceless.” Jesse doesn’t let his Christian brothers’ and sisters’ initial fear and skepticism stop him. Neither should we.
You Are Jesse Dean: How to Become a Voice for the Voiceless Now
Could you be the Jesse Dean of your home town? Remember, hundreds of thousands of abortions are taking place among our own fellow Christians. Your voice could be the only thing between a child and the abortion mill across the street.
Take a first step right now by watching the “Voiceless” Leaders’ Video, in which executive producer Stuart Migdon and writer director Pat Necerato share their insights about the powerful mission of the film.
Explore the other great resources available at VoicelesstheMovie.com, including a kit to get you started in your church community. Check out the work of Jason Scott Jones, executive producer of “Voiceless” and president of Movie to Movement.
Click here for tickets, and for a list of theaters where “Voiceless” will be showing this month, starting with opening night on October 7th. Click here for group tickets, and to bring “Voiceless” to your own hometown.