Couple tell story, pledge to be 'silent no more', from the February 4 South Texas Catholic News.
Some excerpts follow, but please read the whole article.
Miguel and Norma Santoyo look like any other typical 30-something couple. High school sweethearts and parents of four children, no one could guess the hidden agony they carried deep in their hearts.
Twenty two years ago, when Norma was 15 and Miguel was 17, they conceived a child. Being young, unmarried, and frightened, they allowed themselves to be pressured into abortion.
Thus was the story that began the "Silent No More" rally held Jan. 22.
A new organization to the Corpus Christi area, The National Silent No More Awareness Campaign is an effort to educate the public about the devastation abortion brings to women, men, and their families. The organization's mission is to help the emotional and physical pain of abortion no longer be shrouded in secrecy and silence, but rather exposed and healed. Then the effort is a key to make abortion unthinkable and to persuade society that women deserve better than abortion.
Norma Santoyo tearfully and courageously told a crowd of 200 people who had marched from St. Joseph how abortion had changed her life forever.
"Before the abortion, I had goals and dreams, and after the abortion, all my goals and dreams were shattered. I felt empty. I experienced guilt, shame, and grief. No one told me I would suffer this way. How could I had done this to my baby?"
She spoke about her nightmares and anniversary grief over the abortion. "I tried very hard to put it behind me. Abortion haunts you and scars you for life."
Santoyo realized she needed peace in her life. And when she finally turned to God "the Lord took me in his arms and forgave me. God allowed me to forgive me."
"Abortion is not the best choice; choosing life is the best choice."
Miguel Santoyo continued the testimony as he said, "Twenty two years ago, I allowed my 15-year-old-girlfriend to go through the abortion. I did not want my life to change."
"I am grateful to God that he allowed us to have five more children, but I still remember my (first) little baby." One of the Santoyo's other children died six days after it was born.
The Santoyos now work with young women telling their stories. "We will be silent no more," they said in unison at the end of their talk.