By Cheryl Sullenger, Operation Rescue
Las Cruces, NM – Up before the break of dawn, Pastors Manny and Grace Lardizabal of Albuquerque were headed south. As the scenic sights of the burnished New Mexico deserts sped by, Manny and Grace prayed for God’s favor.
But what God did next blew them away.
Manny and Grace, who are core leaders with Protest ABQ, were leading a team to Las Cruces, where the Texas-based abortion chain, Whole Woman’s Health, had announced that it would be opening a new abortion facility on September 15. The purpose of that facility would be to target women living in Texas for abortions and thus avoid the new Texas abortion laws that had already shut down half of the abortion facilities in that state.
In New Mexico, there is no 24-hour waiting period to protect women from spur-of-the-moment decisions or succumbing to high-pressure sales pitches by abortion center staff only to regret it later. There are no facility safety requirements. There is no health department oversight. No inspections. No parental notification. No requirements for emergency plans when things go wrong.
New Mexico is the “Wild West” for the abortion cartel where anything goes – even abortions through all nine months of pregnancy.
Manny and Grace gathered their team outside the announced location of the new abortion facility and were blessed to be joined by several local pro-life supporters.
As they began to pray, they realized that God has already answered their prayers.
The doors were locked and the building was dark. The abortion facility failed to open as planned.
“Most of the residents were very supportive and shocked to hear about the abortion clinic that sneaked in,” said Grace in a Facebook posting. Even “The police were great and surprised to hear what really was going to take place inside that clinic.”
But due to what the abortion facility called “logistical issues,” the opening has been indefinitely delayed.
“We call that a victory!” said Grace.
“Every day that this abortion mill is closed means lives are being spared,” said Troy Newman, President of Operation Rescue. “It is pretty low for this abortion business to seek to prey on women in a state that offers women no protections whatsoever and sets no standards that facilities like this must maintain. It means that Whole Woman’s Health can cut corners on patient safety or even run a Gosnell-like operation and never be held accountable. It is horrific to think of women being exploited in this way for financial gain.”
The move across state lines reveals the hypocrisy of the abortion cartel’s arguments recently made in court challenges to new safety laws in Mississippi and Alabama. In Mississippi, a judge ruled that a law requiring abortionists to maintain local hospital privileges was unconstitutional because it would shut down the last abortion facility in that state and “force” women to cross state lines to get abortions.
Crossing state lines was considered by abortion providers in Mississippi to pose an “undue burden,” but in New Mexico, it is considered a financial boon – if they can ever open, that is.
“Whatever ‘logistical issues’ Whole Women’s Health is experiencing, we hope they continue and that the business never opens,” said Newman. “In the meantime, we call on New Mexico’s Gov. Susana Martinez to take action to prevent opportunistic abortion businesses like Whole Woman’s Health from moving to her state so they can avoid safety regulations in other states.”
If the abortion facility ever manages to open, it is clear that the people of New Mexico will be there to help women and let the community know that the abortion business is not wanted in Las Cruces.
After hearing that the abortion facility was not opening, the Lardizabals led their team in public outreach in the neighborhoods of Las Cruces and surrounding communities, including Dona Ana, St. Theresa then across the state border to Anthony and El Paso, Texas.
Referencing Nehemiah 4:7-8, Grace stated, “We covered [the] borders in prayer. Because of them, we made our prayers to our God and set a watch against them day and night.”