Vulnerability: An Identity Crisis

Video 4

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A woman who is unexpectedly pregnant may experience profound vulnerability. Ponder this reality and learn how genuine accompaniment can transform fear into hope.

Scripture for Reflection

“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)

“Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2)

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10)

Reflection Questions 

  1. Was there a word, phrase, or idea that resonated with me? That was new to me?
  2. How do I view vulnerability? In myself? In others?
  3. Have there been times when I felt I lost control of my life? What was my response? What were my fears? What gave me hope?
  4. According to Paul Swope, women in crisis pregnancies generally view adoption as the worst form of death of self. Take a moment to pause and reflect on this. How can I empathize with a woman in crisis? When have I had to make a hard decision that was ultimately for my good, but which felt like a death of self at the time?
  5. The Sisters speak about how those who choose life make an act of faith in themselves and incorporate motherhood into their self identity. Has there been a time(s) that I have experienced questions or doubts about my identity, for example, as a spouse, a parent, a student, a leader? How did I respond to these doubts? Was I called to make an act of faith in myself? 
  6. Is there a fruit from my prayer that I would like to share with others? 

Discussion Questions

  1. Is there a fruit from your prayer that you would like to share with others?
  2. In the modern world vulnerability is viewed negatively, but in the Christian life it’s essential for communion with others. How do you tend to view vulnerability? When have you had an experience of vulnerability that was transformed from something negative into an opportunity of encounter?  
  3. In the video we heard that, for many women, abortion is a response to the interior question: “How can I preserve my own life?” How do you react to this? How does this perception of abortion as self-preservation impact your understanding of women who find themselves unexpectedly pregnant? How can you build empathy for a woman who has this experience? 
  4. Sister Maria Cristina, SV says, “If we begin to wrap our minds around this perception of abortion as self-preservation, we can start to understand the extent of the pressures and temptations a pregnant woman in crisis faces. This allows us to prepare our hearts to receive her, …to give her the space to reflect honestly and ponder the questions tugging at her heart. If she feels understood, she will begin to trust, and once that happens we can respond, … with a real friendship and practical support – housing, clothing, options for continued education – the list goes on.” How does this approach to walking with a woman in crisis strike you? Does it resonate or not? Explain.


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