Prior to an abortion, the parents may want to set aside some private moments to say good-bye to their baby, to express their love and the deep sorrow they feel that the baby could not survive or would have lived with a diminished quality of life.
The mother may wish to read the following prayer:
The choice has been made.
One of the hardest of my life.
Bless me as I go forth.
Help me to face the guilt I feel
so that I may not run away from the truth.
Empower me to own the fear in my heart
that I may have compassion
for others who share my pain.
Bless all who support me
with the strength of their love;
In the name of God
The mother and father may wish to make an “act of dedication,” individually or jointly in the name of their child, and ask for friends’ support to keep their vow. The promise should be personal, specific, and attainable, such as, “In the name of our child, we promise to give $____ every month for the coming year to support a homeless child,” or “In the name of our child, we promise we will plant a garden on the street where all who pass by may see the abundance of God’s grace.”
Prayer (as water is poured from a pitcher into a bowl placed in front of the woman):
We pour this water as a symbol of the tears of mourning, the forgiveness of guilt, and the beginning of a new life for you. We beseech God to uphold you and to fill you with grace, that you may know the healing power of God’s divine love. We give you our love, promising to stand by you now and through the days to come. Amen.
(At the end, friends greet one another with hugs, the sign of friendship and peace.)