Crosses for Life

 

       January is the anniversary of the decision by the United States Supreme Court to legalize abortion in 1973, and October is “Respect Life” month.  During these months, weather permitting, it has become customary for many churches and pro-life organizations to display a “Cemetery of the Innocents” on their property for the entire month.  

       The number of crosses has varied in the displays.  Some displays have between  135-160 crosses, representing the approximate number of abortions performed in the United States per hour since 1973; others have a huge display of sometimes 3000 to 4500 crosses, representing the approximate number of abortions performed daily in the United States since 1973.  Some organizations display 25-30 crosses, with each cross standing for a multiple number of abortions.  Regardless of how many crosses are displayed, the point of the display is to highlight the tremendous loss of innocent human life through abortion.

OBTAINING CROSSES

There are many options for obtaining crosses for the display:

  • Right to Life of Northeast Ohio has contacts that will loan crosses for your display.  Contact the Right to Life office at 330-762-2785.  Crosses are loaned on a first come, first served basis.
  • Right to Life of Northeast Ohio also has contacts for people in the area who make crosses. Contact the Right to Life office at 330-762-2785.
  • To purchase commercially made wooden crosses, contact:  Stakestore in Jasper, Indiana at 812-482-2900, or visit their website at www.stakestore.com
  • Another option for pre-made crosses is GoodName.com.  CLICK HERE to visit their website.
  • In some churches or organizations, there are groups looking to do service projects, such as the Boy Scouts, Knights of Columbus, Men’s Prayer Group or more.  Many times, these groups fully fund the construction of the crosses and donate them to the pro-life group.  
  • A pro-life group in Michigan called Life.Org has made their own crosses using yard sticks that contain no imprint and have been dipped three times in white enamel paint.   Two crosses can be made out of three yardsticks.  Their church youth group assembled the crosses using heavy duty glue and a heavy duty stapler.   These crosses are not as sturdy as some and probably need a hole pre-made in the ground to prevent breakage when inserting in the ground, but if treated well, they will last a long time. The special white yardsticks made by the Advertising Specialty Association cost $.50 each, but cannot be sold directly to the public, only through their sales associate who tacks on commission.  However, Life.Org facilitates purchases for groups without a commission.    An order of 320 yardsticks will cost about $160 plus $25 shipping.  Contact Life.Org at 414-762-6580, or e-mail them at info@life.org.
  • A pro-life group in Indiana has a permanent “Cemetery of the Innocents” display of 2,000 crosses on private land near a major freeway.   They recently replaced their display of wooden crosses with crosses made from white PVC pipe.  One long and three shorter pieces of pipe were attached to a 4-way connector, and the three shorter ends had caps glued on. 
  • The crosses used for any display should all be the same, however, all organizations displaying crosses do not have to have the same crosses.

   cemeteryforweb.jpg 

       All cross displays should have an accompanying banner.  Many organizations use signs which show abortion statistics either locally or nationally.  Since the display is intended to be a sensitive and powerful show of support for the sanctity of human life, as indicated in the picture above, the banner should be sensitive as well.  This banner is available to order through us.  The banners are weatherproof vinyl, full color and measure 3’x 8’.   Grommets are on the shorter side for use to attach to fence posts, trees, or walls.  If weather and/or frozen ground prohibits the display of crosses, the banner should be displayed by itself.  CLICK HERE for a banner order form.

FUNDING

        The biggest obstacle facing most organizations is how to fund the purchase of the banner and crosses or the materials to make the crosses.  One of the best ways that we have heard about (other than getting a group or someone to underwrite the whole project) is to do an adoption or sponsor drive.  You can make an appeal to help defray the cost of the project by asking for a donation (perhaps $5) per cross from church or organization members.  These donations can be a made in honor of an aborted child or in honor of someone’s children or grandchildren.  Once all donations are received, a list of donors or honorees should be prepared and  framed to hang in your church or meeting place, or to use on a handout with the display.

FLYERS/HANDOUTS

       It is a good idea if possible to have some flyers or handouts available explaining the display of crosses, especially if the display is accessible to the public.  One way to make the flyers available is to purchase an outside literature display box, similar to what real estate companies use with their yard signs with flyers available.  These boxes hold up to 8 1/2 x 11 flyers and are available at most office supply stores for between $12-$20.   They can be fastened to the fence post or tree that is holding the banner. 

BULLETIN/NEWSLETTER ANNOUNCEMENT

If your organization or church has a weekly bulletin or monthly newsletter, you should insert a notice in the publication about the cross display so that everyone knows just what the display is about.  Make sure to check with your publication’s editor for submission deadlines.  If possible, bulletin announcements should be in every issue of a weekly publication. 

REALITIES

As  someone who has respect for the dignity of all life, you must remember that there are those who do not, and those who may find fault with your display.  Sometimes, there may even be those who choose to vandalize it.  Our purpose is not to be confrontational; our purpose is to promote the sanctity of life.  The crosses are an outward sign of the fact that God loved us even before we were formed in the womb, as stated in Jeremiah, and are erected to represent the loss of life on earth, and eternal life with God in heaven.  It is meant for prayer, not politics. 

 

Sample documents to help you prepare your own forms/flyers:

Sample Bulletin Announcements

Flyer Example

Spiritual Adoption Form Example

News Release Example

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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