2018 Coalition Training

It is an exciting time when we are able to gather with our co-workers from all over New England for a training.  Pictured are Rose and Laurie, Client Advocates, Gail, Executive Director, Aimee, LPN and Paula, Nurse Manager.  Wendy, our Director of Development took the picture.  We all met at Freedom Worship Center in West Boylston on May 30th.  Our teacher was Cynthia Hopkins, VP of Center Services and Client Care, Care Net headquarters in Virginia.  She gave us an introduction on how to be a “Pregnancy Decision Coach.”

“Jesus is our perfect example of qualities we want to emulate as we serve in the pregnancy center ministry.  His earthly ministry was characterized by many traits, including authenticity, acceptance, humility, and empathy.”  At the training we explored what each of these traits meant to us and how we would use them to bring compassion, hope and help to men and women facing unplanned pregnancy.

Choose Life Plate

Mark Conrad, facilitator, proudly wore his choose life plate t-shirt.  This training is underwritten by a grant from them.  If you don’t have a “Choose Life” plate it may be time for you to consider obtaining one.  It is a wonderful way to raise public awareness and  needed funding to support positive choices of Life, Adoption and Safe Havens for men and women facing unplanned pregnancies.

Spare some change to make a change

If you haven’t picked up a baby bottle to fill with change at your church, stop by the center and we’ll gladly give you one.

Annual Community Baby Shower

Aimee Martinez, Wendy Mattis and Paula Butler

The Annual Community Baby Shower Hosted by WIC and MOC was held at the Elks in Leominster on Wed. May 9.  There was a great turnout with many local organizations represented at tables.  Many wonderful gifts were raffled off throughout the afternoon.  At the CareNet PRC table we gave away beautiful hand-knit infant sweater sets to pregnant women.  Many guests to our table enjoyed taking pictures with our baby models.  Guests would hold the baby model that is the same size as their expected baby and take a picture holding the baby model in front of their stomach.  As always, we felt very welcome at this event and were happy to see familiar faces!  (picture includes Aimee Martinez, Wendy Mattis and Paula Butler).

Aldersgate Methodist Church Women’s Group gives Baby Shower

The Aldersgate Methodist Church Women’s Group gives a Baby Shower for Care Net PRC Fitchburg, MA.

What a joy it was to be with the Women’s Group at Aldersgate Methodist Church in Chelmsford, Massachusetts!  On April 21st the Aldersgate Women’s group gathered and hosted a baby shower for our CareNet Baby Boutique.  After a lovely luncheon and time of fellowship we gathered for a few minutes to hear all about CareNet PRC and how their wonderful gifts of baby items will help to stock our boutique at 515 Main St. in Fitchburg, Ma.  After taking pregnancy, childbirth or parenting classes, parents earn Boutique Bucks and are invited to shop in the CareNet Boutique for their new baby. Here at CareNet we are so happy to have this new relationship with the beautiful people at the Aldersgate Methodist Church in Chelmsford and are thankful for their generosity through this shower!

Newly Acquired Ultrasound Machine is our Gift for Christmas

Left to right. Paula Butler, Mike Malanson, Gail Gardner, and Fr. Dolan

God works in mysterious ways.  His ways are not ours.  In 2006 we were able to purchase a Toshiba ultrasound machine with a grant from Focus on the Family.  That machine is now over 12 years old.  It was time for us to consider replacing the one we have.  Pictured above is our newly acquired Esaote Ultrasound machine.  On the left is Paula Butler our Nurse Manager and sonographer.  Behind her is Mike Malanson of the Knights of Columbus St. Anthony of Padua council.  The lady in red is Gail Gardner, Executive Director and behind her is Fr. Dolan, rector of St. Bernards.

Our mission is to offer life-affirming alternatives to abortion and compassionate counsel to those who face pregnancy and abortion related issues.  The ability to take a picture of the baby in the womb helps.  So let me share with you the story of how this gift made its way to our clinic.

The reason I selected the scripture, “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men” is because my tale begins at SS Lobster.  Every Tuesday my friend Sharon and I go to SS for dinner.  This one particular Tuesday, just before Thanksgiving, a couple of gentlemen stood behind us to place their order.  I couldn’t help but notice that their name badges had “Knights of Columbus” on them so I said, “I see you guys are from the Knights.”  They replied, “Yes, is there anything we can do for you?”  I said, you can get us a new ultrasound machine.  We went to our table and they took the table behind us.  I told them I was director of a center in Fitchburg and the ultrasound we have is over 12 years old.  We talked a while and he handed me his card.  I learned that he lived and grew up in Fitchburg.  The next day at work I sent him an email inviting him to stop by for a tour of the center.  That was November 15th.  On December 5th I get a call from Mike Malanson telling me that Mark Suomala, the Knight I had spoken to at SS Lobster had been in touch with him.  Through a series of events, there was a unit available.  A center in Revere had recently purchased a portable unit and no longer needed their Esaote machine.  On December 11th Mike and Paula’s husband Mark traveled to Revere to pick up the unit and bring it to us.  Mike asked Fr. Dolan to come in and bless the unit, and he did. 

The psalmist tells us that God, “formed our inward parts; and knitted us together in our mother’s womb.”  (Psalm 139:13)

Through the technology of ultrasounds we get to see babies in the womb.  God’s gift.  What a way to affirm life.  We are ever grateful and amazed at how God works.

Merry Christmas

Diaper Drive and Baby Shower 2017

As a Christian ministry, our mission is to offer life-affirming alternatives to abortion and compassionate counsel to those who face pregnancy and abortion related issues.  Our desire is to serve women and families by meeting the various practical needs they encounter in an unplanned pregnancy.  One of those needs would be diapers. We are grateful for the generosity of the members of St. John the Evangelist Parish in Townsend. 

Peter Pothier from St. John’s on left heads their pro-life committee. Gail Gardner our center’s Executive Director is on the right. St. John Diaper Drive 2017

And the giving doesn’t end there.  We truly got to experience Christmas in July when we received the many new baby items for our boutique from St. Edward the Confessor Parish in Westminster. 

Gifts from St. Edward the Confessor

We continue to celebrate life and give God the Glory as we continue to receive baby bottles filled with donations for our ministry.  Being a medical clinic is costly.  We would not be able to open our doors without you.  Thank you all, our family in Christ, for your generous support.  We are truly blessed and grateful for the many churches that participate.

April Community Shower

Care Net PRC Display, Elks Club in Leominster, MA

What a joy it was to be part of a community baby shower held at the Elks in Leominster on April 26th.  We were part of over 25 agencies in the region who provide service and assistance to Moms and Dads in our area.  Expectant Moms held our baby models and found it amazing.  We are a non-profit Christian ministry.  Our mission is to offer life-affirming alternatives to abortion and compassionate counsel to those who face pregnancy and abortion related issues.  We are here to help.  Making decisions is difficult.  You need to know all of your options.  Empowerment comes when you find the strength and resources necessary to make your best choice.  We are a licensed medical clinic, our services are free and include pregnancy testing, ultrasounds, pregnancy and childbirth education.  Due to the generosity of one of our many supporters we were able to give away hand-knitted baby sweaters to expectant Moms and Dads.

Respectfully,
Gail

What Makes a Good Gift?

2017 High School Health Fair

Students were shown two gifts. They were asked which gift they would prefer. One was a beautiful gift while the other one was in rough condition. It had been opened and rewrapped. Students were then asked the question, “What makes a good gift?” We determined that there were three main things: an intimate relationship between the giver and receiver, intentional effort, and exclusiveness. We discussed that you need to know a person to give a personal gift. You have to put time and effort into choosing a good gift. The gift needs to be exclusive. If a person gives you a meaningful gift then gives the same gift to another person the value diminishes. To have meaning, the gift is given only to one person.

Students were then asked, “Do you know there is something that was created as a beautiful gift that is an expression of love that binds two people together?” The gift is sex. To be a beautiful gift it has to have the three things we agreed on. It should be given to a person we know deeply and have made a commitment to, it should take effort, waiting for the right time, and it should be given to one person exclusively. The context that makes sex a beautiful gift is marriage. When we take the time to really get to know a person, wait to be intimately exclusive with that one person, what a beautiful gift we can give our spouse.

Students were asked how the strength of a marriage would be if they were able to give their spouse the beautiful gift as opposed to the worn already opened gift. Their reply was the beautiful gift would strengthen their marriage. The bond would be strong. They were asked how you would feel receiving that beautiful gift. That someone would cherish you to wait and give you the gift at the right moment and only to you. They replied, “I would feel loved and valued.” They then were asked, “How would the rewrapped gift make you feel.” They replied, “It wouldn’t feel special. The connection wouldn’t be strong.” They were left with this question, “What gift do you want to give?”

2017 High School Health Fair Display by Care Net PRC, Fitchburg MA

A Christmas Prayer – Empowered by Christ to Choose Life

Nativity set at Carenet PRC

Nativity set at Carenet PRC

While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her  firstborn, a son.  She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room available for them at the inn.  Luke 2:6-7 (NIV)

“Care Net envisions a culture where women and men faced with pregnancy decisions are transformed by the gospel of Jesus Christ and empowered to choose life for their unborn children and abundant life for their families.”   From our national office in Virginia.  We are pleased to be an affiliate of Care Net.

Jesus came so that we may have life and have it abundantly.  (John 10:10)

Merry Christmas

St. John of Townsend, Diaper Drive 2016

Paula Butler R.N. Nurse Manager, Gail Gardner, Director - St. John Diaper Drive 2016

Paula Butler R.N., Nurse Manager, Gail Gardner, Director

As a Christian ministry, our mission is to offer life-affirming alternatives to abortion and compassionate counsel to those who face pregnancy and abortion related issues.  Our desire is to serve women and families by meeting the various practical needs they encounter in an unplanned pregnancy.  One of those needs would be diapers and St. John’s in Townsend gave us over 3,000 diapers.  We have been blessed by them for many years.  We also received more items for our Boutique from Bethany Bible Chapel in Winchendon, and our neighbors, the ladies from the Senior Center, donated some beautiful hand-made blankets.  This is community spirit at its best.  We are blessed to have so many friends that care.

Gifts from Baby Shower at St. Edwards, Westminster

Linda Barrows and her son Joe

Linda Barrows and her son Joe

Linda Barrows and her son Joe brought us gifts given by the members of St. Edwards Parish in Westminster.  Linda set up a playpen in their foyer and our generous brothers and sisters in Christ filled it with beautiful baby items for our “Baby Boutique.”  The shower was announced on Mother’s day and items were brought in through Father’s Day.  We are a non-profit Christian ministry.  Our mission is to offer life affirming alternatives to abortion and compassionate counsel to those who face pregnancy and abortion related issues.  But we don’t stop there.  We offer child-birth and parenting classes and a chance to shop in our boutique.  Most churches do the Baby Bottles from Mother’s Day to Father’s Day, but since St. Edwards participates in the campaign during Advent, they blessed us this way instead.  Our Baby Bottle fundraising opportunity is where people fill baby bottles with change, we ask that “you spare some change,” to “make a change.”   We are grateful to all our Christian community who help.  We could not do this without your help.