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Remarks for the 30th Puget Sound CareNet Light and Life Banquet (speech)

March 6, 2013

6:30 – Welcome and Invocation
“Thank you John, and indeed welcome to the 30th annual Puget Sound CareNet Light and Life Banquet. I am Bob Case and it will be my job to move things along this evening. The first thing we will do is have Rev. Paul Jones, pastor of Peninsula Baptist Church come and lead us to the throne of grace: Rev. Jones: xxx
Thank you Pastor Jones”

6:35 – Welcome comments
“We are grateful to have organizations which have supported CareNet this year here tonight. When I mention your organization, please stand up, and remain standing as I mention all the groups so that we can acknowledge you:
*4-US
*YWAM Adoption Ministry
*Family Policy Institute
*40 Days for Life
*Students for Life
*Knights of Columbus
*Human Life of Washington
Thank you. Let’s give them a hand. You can now sit down.

In addition to these organizations we also have various individuals supporting CareNet. When I mention your profession, please stand and stay standing so that we can acknowledge you:
*Physicians serving with CareNet
*Attorneys serving with Carenet
*Pastors of area congregations serving with CareNet
*Caregivers with various maternity management groups
*Board members of CareNet
*Volunteer staff serving with CareNet
Thank you. Let’s give them a hand. You can sit down.

I want to mention one politician, a new pro-life representative from Federal Way, Roger Freeman. Roger was one of only two Democrats who crossed party lines and voted against abortion insurance coverage a couple of weeks ago. Against great opposition from his party, Freeman followed the apostle Paul and said his vote was “a matter of faith and good conscience.” Last week, at the Governor’s Prayer Breakfast Rep. Freeman announced had just been diagnosed with a life-threatening sickness. I want to take this opportunity to pray for our brother in Christ, so please join me in prayer: Freeman Prayer

6:45 – I did my first Pierce County CareNet spring banquet in l993. It was then called Pierce County Crises Pregnancy Center Spring Life Celebration and it was under the leadership of Dr. Michael Jackson, who was chairman of the Board of Directors. Dr. Jackson is still on the board of directors and is typical of the Pierce county pro-life pioneers who have been gathering in this annual celebration of life since 1983.
I don’t know how many Roman Catholics are here to night. I suspect most of you are evangelical Protestants like me. But 40 years ago, in l973, it wasn’t this way. In the l970s being pro-life was largely a Roman Catholic commitment. We Protestants were standing on the sidelines. Two years after Roe v. Wade in l973, there was still no national Protestant pro-life organization which spanned denominations. Oh, there were small groups of Protestant pro-life activists around, but they were struggling. The Catholics saw this and they did not want the pro-life cause to be marginalized as a Roman Catholic issue. They knew immediately that Roe v. Wade had huge moral and cultural consequences. So two years later, in 1975, tired of waiting around for us evangelicals, a group of 18 prominent Roman Catholic laymen, largely in the orbit of the magazine National Review, formed a temporary organization with the terrible title of “The Ad Hoc Committee in Defense of Life, Incorporated,” rented an office in the National Press Club Building in Washington, DC, and set out to find evangelical partners in the cause. Harold O. J. Brown was then an editor at Christianity Today which was located in Washington, DC. These Catholic laymen got together with Presbyterians Joe Brown and Dr. C. Everett Koop (a surgeon in Philadelphia) to form an organization called “Christian Action Council.” CAC was to be a national evangelical pro-life political action group headquartered in the Ad Hoc’s offices in the nation’s capital.

To make a long story short, in the summer of l976, less than a year later, I was invited to move to Washington to be the first, full-time national director of this new organization, the “Christian Action Council.” CAC would eventually morph into “Pregnancy Care Center” and finally into “CareNet,” reflecting a broader focus than just political action.

In l976, when CAC began in earnest, the evangelical involvement in the pro-life cause was lukewarm at best. In 1979 Francis Schaeffer and Dr. Koop (who was a big financial backer of the Christian Action Council in those early years) did their remarkable film series “What Ever Happened to the Human Race.” It then became acceptable for us evangelicals to get involved in the bloody business of saving the unborn.
What does this brief trip down memory lane have to do with us tonight? Just this:

CareNet is the largest, most robust pro-life organization in America, and Roman Catholic laymen were instrumental in starting this group with seed money, encouragement and office space in the mid-1970s. We evangelicals were on the sidelines in the early years while babies were being killed in America. Even after the Catholics stepped-up to help us, the evangelical prolife movement stumbled along for another four years until Schaeffer and Koop did their video series. Meanwhile, the butchering continued, amazingly, some in our own churches. Eventually, we rose to the challenge, and it wasn’t long after Schaeffer and Koop that the Pierce County pro-life movement took wings in the hostile Puget Sound region and began to save lives. We dare not retreat from the joined-battle now but must continue that commitment.

35 years ago Joe Brown, told me that he and I would not see the end of abortion in America. Joe died several years ago of brain cancer, “Chick” Koop died just a couple of weeks ago, and I am an old man nearing retirement, and yet the butchering continues. Many in this room have spent their entire lives contending for the lives of unborn babies and their mothers. At some tables there are 3 generations of pro-lifers. And the fight continues. This need will not end in our lifetime because we will always be fighting for the little ones.

But tonight is a night of celebration.

Now, this summer, on August 16 and 17, we will have the opportunity to participate in events that will support the work of pregnancy centers such as CareNet of Puget Sound.  The 4-US organization is in its 8th year and is hosting another fantastic event that upholds life and promotes family.  All proceeds from the August event will go to purchase ultrasound machines for pregnancy centers.

To date, the 4-US organization has provided over 20 ultrasound machines to pregnancy centers in the Pacific Northwest. CareNet of Puget Sound has received 9 ultrasound machines and the funds to help train nurses in ultrasound sonography.

This is possible because of teams of “Champions” who give of their time, talent and resources make these events possible. Please give your attention to this brief video presentation that explains the 300 – Champions who will give 3 days of time, talent and treasure to host the summer fundraising events this August.

If you are interested in learning more about 4-US – their events and ways you and your church can participate – please visit their ministry table in the reception hall following the banquet.
We will reconvene in about 30 minutes, so enjoy the video, your dinner and table fellowship.

7:15 – Introduction of Kim Triller: “Now, please welcome Kim Triller, Executive Director of CareNet of Puget Sound”

7:30 – “Thank you ladies for your testimonies”
“A Case family testimony: In November 1976 our two and a half year old daughter, Karissa, was pictured on the front page of the national Right to Life News as Daddy’s political prop pointing to a bumper strip on our car which read “Stop Abortion: There is a Better Way.” In God’s providential kindness, 35 years later the same daughter, unable to bear her own genetic children, adopted first one infant daughter and then had an embryo transplant from a Seattle donor couple for yet another daughter – proving to the Case family, again, that “there is a better way” than butchery. I’m very proud of this daughter and son-in-law, but my two granddaughters wouldn’t be granddaughters without the life-affirming choice of other women. Grandparents of adopted children – we of all people have something to celebrate tonight, so honor your children and your grandchildren and the birth mothers – and write a big check.”

7:45 – Introduction of Mike Williams

“Our keynote speaker tonight is an author, a musician, a missionary to the Dominican Republic and a pro-life comedian. You may have seen him on Bananas Comedy Television or heard one of his daily bits on satellite radio’s Family Comedy Channel.  His latest book entitled Love is Not A Three-Letter Word, is a new way to teach teens about abstinence, and he has another new book entitled Men Moved to Mars When Women Started Killing the Ones on Venus. Please welcome Mike G. Williams.”

8:30 – “Thank you, Mike. We will take a couple of minutes for the table hosts to collect the envelopes and then Rev. Lonnie Arnold, pastor of Hilltop Bible Church will come and send us on our way.”
8:30 – “Rev. Arnold”:  (Arnold’s prayer)
“Thank you, Pastor Arnold

And thank you for joining us this evening in this celebration of life. A couple of housekeeping announcements:
*The table centerpieces are yours to take home.
*Be sure and say hello to Mike Williams before you leave
*As you leave, I encourage you to visit the ministry tables in the foyer:
*Healing Tide
*Smart Programs
*4-us
*Solevai
*Finally, table hosts be sure and turn in your table envelopes to the designated area.

Good night and thank you for coming.”

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