LaRee Pickup (far right) with husband Mark, and Bob and Mary Schindler (parents of Terri Schiavo) at 2005 US National Right to Life Convention in Minneapolis, MN
My wife LaRee (pronounced like Marie only with an L) has been hired as the provincial Director of Alberta Pro-Life. (See http://www.albertaprolife.com/).
She brings her unique life-experience to the position. Having had an abortion at 17 (it was my baby), followed by years of grief, then helping both her grandparents through their end of life care, and living with my degenerative and frightening multiple sclerosis (MS) for a quarter of a century, she has vast experience in various Life issues. She earned her degree from the School of life.
DISABILITY AND GRIEF
She understands that assisted suicide and euthanasia are the abandonment of love just as abortion is the abandonment of love. Profound disability doesn't affect just individuals ─ it affects families. Family grief must be ministered to -- not just individuals' -- if hope is to be restored, and life embraced, even at its end stages. Assisted suicide is abandonment more profound than the disability. To acquiesce to a person's request for help in their suicide is to agree their lives are worthless -- so worthless they are not worth defending.
Despair is not only a sin against hope it is a sin against love. Without love, hope can not germinate, it can not survive, and it certainly can not thrive. People may despair in their circumstances in the short term but a high and noble calling of a Culture of Life is to help vulnerable people (whether they be individuals directly threatened or their families) look past the short term despair and discover or rediscover hope. It is the Culture of Death that agrees with despair’s claim -- There is no hope. Curse God and die (or kill).
LaRee's primary strength is the ability to say to the woman in crisis pregnancy, or the family of a dying or disabled loved one "I know your pain."
She knows the pain and poverty of saying No to life through abortion just as she knows the blessing and refining of the soul that can occur with the choice to affirm human dignity and value through love and care for disabled and dying family members.
LaRee’s life journey is about to enter a new phase as she assumes the director’s position of Alberta Pro-Life. Her offering is her humanity.
I pray people accept it. I pray she succeeds as the director of Alberta Pro-Life.