The newly created pro-life society at Oxford Brookes University has distinguished itself by combining, right from the start, a healthy balance of educational talks and pro-life activism.
When student groups hold talks, interested students will come to hear the pro-life message. These talks are a good way of educating the members of a pro-life society, as well as providing an opportunity for people to challenge ideas. Talks allow for Q&A, discussion, debate, the opportunity to meet other like-minded students, as well as socialise.
The benefit of outreach, namely leafleting, is that you don't wait for people to come and hear the pro-life message; instead you take the message directly to them. Universities have tens of thousands of students, and an activity like leafleting is a simple and effective way of getting something pro-life into students hands. A well crafted leaflet can engage the mind and the heart, give people helplines, factual information, raise questions, and direct the reader to online resources. Political parties, local restaurants and take-aways, businesses, and charities all use leafleting as a method of getting their message across and putting themselves on peoples radars. Another inspirational example is the White Rose Movement, who were a group of university students in Germany under the Nazi government. They wrote, printed, and distributed thousands of leaflets denouncing the injustices carried out by the Nazi government. This bold witness lead to their trial and swift executions. Their legacy lives on decades later as an example to us.
So, a group from Oxford Brookes - Genevieve, Max, Elsa, and myself from SPUC - spent an afternoon leafleting last week. Around 1000 homes were reached with a SPUC 9 Million Children leaflet, which details the development of the unborn child, the effects of abortion upon women, and helplines for those facing an unexpected pregnancy or are post-abortive. We stopped off for a nice lunch in a local pub, then did a bit more leafleting afterwards.
Later in the evening around fifteen of us headed to the student union building where I gave a pro-life presentation on unborn children and the right to life. There were some good questions and the pro-life society committee felt the evening went well and generated lots of new members who want to be actively pro-life in their university and local city. It was really nice to meet the students and they made me feel very welcome.
I am very grateful to have been invited to join them for the day. It is clear that getting a balance between educational talks and outreach is the way forward for student societies. These activities together will ensure that the society grows and continues year after year, building on the commitment of students, and ensures that as many people as possible hear the pro-life message. Students, be ambitious, aim high.
If you're a student or young adult and want to hold a talk and get involved in leafleting outreach, please email me. There are nearly 63 million people in the UK, we need to show each of them that the unborn child is a human person with the right to life. We need to show each of them that abortion is wrong and never a solution. The need is urgent.