Calvary Chapel Old Bridge: Saving Babies & Helping Women in New Jersey—Part 2
Story by Margot Bass
Photos by Tom Price
This is Part 2 of a two-part story about the active pro-life ministry of Calvary Chapel Old Bridge (CCOB), NJ. It first ran in the Winter 2021 issue of Calvary Chapel Magazine, Issue 86. To read Part 1, click here. Part 2 picks up as the ministry leaders discuss helping women who have begun chemical abortions and how CCOB lovingly assists women after they choose life.
Rescue from Chemical Abortions
An unexpected aspect of their work is helping women who have taken the abortion pill to reverse their actions. Debbie Biskey, director of Calvary Chapel Old Bridge, NJ’s, Bridge Women’s Center, expounded, “We found a doctor who provides the reversal pill, progesterone. Usually they call us between 5 to 24 hours after they take that chemical abortion pill, and they are a mess because they want to stop it.” Aboard Hannah, the mobile ultrasound unit purchased by Calvary Chapel Old Bridge, after a woman takes the reversal pill, the doctor will monitor the baby’s heartbeats per minute. “We’ve had three babies where it worked and three babies who passed away. It has a 68% chance of working.”
Lloyd Pulley, senior pastor of CC Old Bridge (CCOB), warned of Planned Parenthood’s deception. “One woman who had taken the abortion pill called frantically and wanted to get the reversal pill. She got word that we could do it. We were trying to set it up and meet her, but she panicked and went back to Planned Parenthood because she wanted to get something quicker. They lied, saying, ‘There is no reversal.’ The delay cost her twin babies. That was a heartbreaker.”
CC Old Bridge (CCOB) Senior Pastor Lloyd Pulley was instrumental in negotiating the deal to purchase the ultrasound unit, named “Hannah”, from “Save the Storks.” The unit travels around New Jersey, reaching out to help women and save babies’ lives. Lloyd is overjoyed that the church board recently voted to purchase an additional unit in 2021.
The Entrance to Ministry
Lloyd addressed the concerns of many pro-choice advocates who claim, “How disgusting are you people? You get out there in front of the clinics, guilt women into having the baby, and then you abandon them when they can’t take care of the baby.” He remembered a recent note he received from a woman who chose to keep her baby after getting an ultrasound on Hannah. “It was a picture of her baby, ultrasound-scanned now a couple of months later—this big, beautiful girl in her womb. She just gushed, ‘Thank you!’ That was powerful and answers the lie that this is all about ‘guilting women.’ They’re thankful that we’re there to give them an option.”
Debbie also encouraged, “For the woman who has had the abortion, we love her just as much; we want her to find Christ—we have a healing program for her, too.”
Hannah is just the entrance to further ministry, Lloyd and Debbie emphasized. “We save the baby’s life, but how are you going to disciple these women?” Debbie asked. Three things that abortion-minded women worry about are health insurance, housing, and finding a job. The Bridge Women’s Center is answering all of them, including helping them find insurance to cover the costs of the pregnancy and delivery of the baby.
Debbie Biskey oversees the ultrasound unit as well as the Women’s Outreach at CCOB.
Debbie added that the center is partnering with an organization to find low-income housing—a 12-month program operating on a sliding scale and requiring employment. She elaborated, “We want to [help] and teach these families and moms. It also involves getting the church body involved. How do we sponsor these women, come alongside them? That’s where a lot of our money and donations will be going.” CCOB also plans to open a high-end thrift shop to employ the women in 2021.
Other programs include pregnancy care, parenting skills, single-parenting concerns, and GED and ESL training. “Each one of those programs offers discipleship,” Debbie assured. “We pray with them, ask them what’s on their hearts, and have Bible studies. That’s the whole mission.” She stated that 12 families have accepted Jesus as Savior because of the Hannah ministry. “We’ve given them Bibles and stay in relationship with them.”
Lloyd affirmed, “There are a lot of women who are going to be having babies at the same time. We’re going to be very strategic in helping them.”
Katie LInzer is brought to tears as she relays what she endured when she opted to keep her baby, Khloe. She was thankful for the encouragement of women from CC Old Bridge.
CCOB also counsels women who do not board Hannah and throws huge baby showers for expectant mothers. Katie Linzer received help during her crisis pregnancy through the church’s pro-life ministry. She enthused, “What was really nice is that everybody was there to support me. They asked me all the time if there was something I needed, anyone I needed to talk to, or if I had any questions.” Because of COVID-19 restrictions, she didn’t expect a baby shower. Through tears, she continued, “I was getting everything [I needed] together myself. And then they did the whole baby shower! I thought that was the most generous thing anyone had ever done, that it was God listening to our prayers.”
“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. How much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!” Matthew 7:7, 11b
Katie had received no support from her boyfriend or his family during her pregnancy to save or even keep her baby girl, Khloe. “Many things were said to me: How are you going to afford this? What are you going to do? Where are you going to live? A family member said I did this on purpose. Everything got put on me to make me want to choose an abortion. But I actually refused, and it was completely my choice to keep her,” she proclaimed. “I needed a lot of support because it is overwhelming. Debbie was always my go-to person. I always texted and called her.” A family from the church offered much support as well.
Katie exhorted, “I think that a lot of women feel that they are alone. But you are never alone. There are always people who want to help. Life is very, very precious. There is always a resource, a way to make it work. There is no reason to choose abortion.”
Katie is thankful for all the support she received from the Bridge Women’s Center and the baby shower CCOB had for her. She knows help is only a phone call away.
Looking to the Future
Lloyd admitted that his early expectations for Hannah’s outreach were good, “but we did not anticipate how God was going to use this so powerfully and in such a short time. The most exciting thing about taking this crazy venture of faith in the middle of COVID, this long adventure we’ve been on to get Hannah, … has been the beautiful picture of the babies that God is saving.”
There were concerns, he noted. “If you look at the political climate, at all the unrest that’s going on, we didn’t know if people were going to stone the medical unit coming into some of these neighborhoods. You know, we prayed and went out there, and God has—beyond words—blessed it.”
While it was tempting to “play it safe” during the pandemic, Lloyd reflected, “The Lord convicted me in Ecclesiastes 11:4 that, essentially, he who observes the wind will not sow. If you’re worried about the storm, you’re not going to sow your seed. And if you don’t sow your seed, you’re not going to have a harvest. So the Lord just convicted us: Let’s go for it. And He’s been so faithful.”
He who observes the wind will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap. Ecclesiastes 11:4
Sara and Matthew Zaki happily show off the images of their child taken from Hannah, the Bridge Women’s Center’s mobile ultrasound unit.
Regarding growth of the ministry, Lloyd’s board has approved the purchase of a new mobile medical unit that will take a year to build and prepare for service. Lloyd relayed, “We have enough people now who are so excited about this and resources coming in that we never anticipated.” He described a day that showed him that Hannah’s ministry was going to be much bigger than expected. Hannah had gone to a location in response to a request from a woman. “The lady came on, then two other ladies came on, and then there were three other ladies who couldn’t get on because there was no time to scan them. But the crew ministered to them outside the medical unit, and all six women kept their babies that day.”
Even more, Lloyd urges other Calvary Chapels, even small ones, to take the necessary step of faith into active pro-life ministry. “I don’t want to be the only one doing this,” he challenged. “You’d be surprised how many resources are out there, and that people really want to be a part of something like this because they know the impact. In fact, a large response comes from women who have been down that road. They want to undo their abortions, which they can’t. But they can pay it forward to that next generation and help rescue them.”
Debbie summed up the ministry: “Women are coming to Christ, babies are being saved, and we’re not just pro-birth. We’re continuing the mission of walking with the women after they choose life, helping them with the necessities, always bringing them back to Jesus. We’re here for the long-term.”
The Bridge Women’s Center is planning a fundraising event on May 13, 2021. Mike Huckabee, former governor of Arkansas, will be the guest speaker.
All verses above are quoted from the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.
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