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Thursday, October 26, 2017

Curing Misconceptions About Abortion

Thank you for clearing it up, because there were a lot of misconceptions I had about abortion.” – Travis, Eastern Kentucky University


Bystanders see what abortion does to the preborn babies on our JumboTron TV while they overhear our conversations.
Travis first said he was kind of indifferent on the issue of abortion. I was able to share some information with him, and ask if he had any questions. 

“I think you’re really starting to clear up everything about it… you covered it pretty good.” 

As we shook hands and he walked away, he said: 

Thank you for clearing it up, because there were a lot of misconceptions I had about abortion.” 
My colleague Sam winsomely draws protesters in conversation everywhere we go – he’s like a magnet for our opposition – and they listen!

This month I joined our travelling team on the road in Kentucky for three days, and had some great conversations. I know many of you are not able to join us during an outreach, so I wanted to share with you some of these interactions. 

In another conversation with a student named Ryan, I explained how we know our differences, like our size, or level of development doesn’t matter, but if they did than there can be no human equality. 
He responded: 
“That’s fair. I feel what you’re saying.” 

Another student took a pamphlet after chatting for a while and said:
“Thanks for all the info, it was really enlightening.”
Bystanders see what abortion does to the preborn babies on our JumboTron TV while they overhear our conversations.

But one of my favorite conversations was with Nick. 

I just wanted to thank you for your time and for your information … I actually had to do a double take on that picture right there [a sign showing a 15-week aborted baby]. I kind of stopped and backed up, and yeah, it’s a crime. It’s pretty messed up… …I’m very appreciative of your time and now I’m kind of expanding my view. My view point is a little bit broader, so I wanted to thank you for that.” - Nick


A crowd of students gathered around me to listen in and ask questions as I engaged a couple protesters in dialogue.
“I challenge each of you to ask yourself if you hold a consistent view of human equality. Do you believe all humans should get the most basic human right to live, or should only humans like us, only born humans?” I asked them.

I am excited for the work the Lord has brought my way, and pray that I can continue this vital life-saving work. 
This year I am working to reach my monthly financial goal for 2017, and I am almost there! 
Will you help me? 
I only need 5 more people giving $57/month, or 15 people giving $19/month! Your gifts are all tax-deductible.

Thank you so much for your generosity, I pray the Lord richly bless you. =) 
There are 2 ways to donate: Click HERE then enter your gift amount in the bar marked “for Rachel Burkey” so your donation will go to me. Or send a check to: 
PO Box 360502 Columbus, OH 43236. 

Make checks out to “Created Equal” and put my name in the memo line. THANK YOU!

Signing off, 
Rachel 😊



P.S. Calling all High School and College students:
Applications for our Spring Justice Ride are now open! Click HERE or watch the above video for an inside look at a what a day on our Justice Ride looks like, and Click HERE to go to our Justice Ride website.
Join us March 10 - 18, 2018 to be a part of changing minds and hearts this spring. 

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

A Life Mourned

11-year-old Favour Agu

Dear Favour,
I wonder how your parents are doing. I wonder what would have happened if you had waited for the walk light. I wish I could have done more to help, though I know you were probably gone when I first saw you. Did you ever know your Creator, the God of the universe, and Jesus Christ, His Son? I hope so! Do your parents know Him? If not, I pray they will. I wish I had a chance to talk to them. My sister’s best friend was also killed in an accident when she was 11. I know that a tragedy like your family has dealt with has no quick resolution, though I also know how powerfully the peace of God and His comfort works in the lives of His children. 
Love and prayers for your family, Rachel Burkey

--------------------------------------------------------------------

On September 22nd, 2016, a middle school boy named Favour Agu was hit and killed as he ran into traffic crossing the street towards his school. The above note is what I wrote to leave by his memorial site this year. I was on my way to the YMCA that morning before work when I saw him lying in the road that day. I stopped and performed CPR on him until emergency personnel arrived.

Though I never knew Favour, his life leaves a memory that will never leave my mind. I saw notes and eulogies of what a kind person he was. Everyone at the school, all those passing by, and even those watching the news that day valued Favour’s life and mourned his death. 


Downtown FtWayne, IN outreach. This mom and her children were saddened to understand what is happening to preborn children.


The next day as I was doing outreach at a college in Indiana University, I wondered what life would be like if every person recognized the incredible value in each human around them – born or pre-born. 
It challenges me to continue seeking God for his eyes towards everyone I encounter. 

In Christ, Rachel

P.S. This last month has been really exciting for my family and me, as both my older brother Daniel and my sister Elizabeth got engaged to be married! I am really blessed by both of my soon-to-be in laws (Hannah and Jacob) and looking forward to this new season in our family. I know the Lord will continue to faithfully teach us as we grow and change as people and as a family. 

The happy couples 💕Left: Jacob and Elizabeth; Right: Daniel and Hannah




I am only able to continue this work with your monthly financial partnership. If you haven’t already, please click HERE, and enter your gift amount in the bar marked “for Rachel Burkey” so your donation will go to me. Or send a check made out to “Created Equal” with my name in the memo line to: PO Box 360502 Columbus, OH 43236. Your donations are tax-deductible.

I talked with this man named Sky at a local Columbus High School when he came to pick up his brother. At first, he said he didn’t really have an opinion, but he left decidedly against abortion. 

Friday, August 18, 2017

Downtown Outreach - A Mind Changed!

It was a normal day of outreach in downtown Columbus, with some people stopping to converse, and others walking past.

Downtown Columbus, OH Outreach
In the afternoon, a man named Omar stopped to talk. When I asked for his view on abortion he said he had not really given it much thought but guessed that it was probably OK early on in a pregnancy. I asked if he was familiar with what the science of embryology shows concerning when life begins, and he replied that he didn’t know but would guess that life begins around 4-5 weeks (after fertilization). I then told him it’s actually fertilization when life begins. I explained to him a bit of how we know this, and told him that through the process of fertilization, both sperm and ovum give up their own identities and become a distinct, whole, living human, that has her own DNA – and is receiving/processing nutrients, maintaining homeostasis, and responding to outside stimuli: even before attaching to the uterine wall!

Wow.” Was all he replied. So I asked him again, now that he knew about when life begins, could there ever be an adequate justification for abortion? to which he said:

“It wouldn’t be right! Wow.” 

Omar was open to hearing out a differing opinion, and after listening to facts presented to him, was humble enough to admit that he had been wrong in his view. 
After we shook hands and he walked away I thought to myself, why aren’t more people like that? What causes us to be so stuck in our ways and refuse to hear truth? But of course I know the answer, it’s our sin nature. 
The natural state that we are all born into is bent towards sin and death.

White House Outreach
Recently I have had some opportunities to talk with people while donating plasma, and during our conversations am reminded of this truth that we all are born in sin and without Christ. 
I’ve realized what a great chance this is to share the gospel with others. Please pray for courage and wisdom for me while I seek to be obedient to the Lord and used by Him in every area of my life. 

My colleague Emma and I took some of our interns into DC on the metro this summer, and had a few minutes to pause while we waited for the rest of the team to bring the gear and begin outreach in front of the White House. (See picture above)

The stories that I share, this work that I do -- is not able to continue without your monthly financial partnership. This year’s goal is to raise $350/m by December 31st, so I need 
15 people to give $24/month, or 
30 people to give $12/month
Click HERE, and enter your gift amount in the bar marked “for Rachel Burkey” so your donation will go to me. Or send a check made out to “Created Equal” with my name in the memo line to: PO Box 360502 Columbus, OH 43236. Your donations are tax-deductible. Will you partner with me in this work?

God bless you! 

Signing off, Rachel Burkey

 Last month I spent a weekend with my family and friends in southern IN helping at the WIT! Alive conference. I even had a chance to share with the group about what I do here at Created Equal, and what they can do to fight abortion in their own towns! It was great to spend this weekend of spiritual renewal with my family and close friends. 


Thursday, July 20, 2017

“It’s actually a good thing you guys are doing, cause my conscience is affected by it.”

Lamont and I praying together downtown

“Hello!”
I greeted a passerby who was walking up from the bus stop.
“I already have one,” he said, holding up one of our Created Equal brochures. He continued:

“It’s actually a good thing you guys are doing, cause my conscience is affected by it.”


I was downtown in Columbus, Ohio, just about to pack up and head back to the office with our team of interns when I met Lamont. I was struck by the comment he made about his conscience being affected by our outreach. He went on to explain that over 40 years ago, his girlfriend had aborted their second child without his knowledge while he was living in selfishness. I asked how he was doing after learning about his child that was killed by abortion, and he told me that over time he realized that he could forgive himself since God was able to forgive him.

“You believe in God, don’t you?” he asked. “Yes sir, I’m a Christian!” I answered. “I already knew,” was his response.







We talked for a few more minutes, but as Lamont was about to leave, he told me that he would be praying for me and asked me to keep him in my prayers as well since he was dealing with a lot. I asked if I could pray with him right then, and we did. When I finished praying for him, he prayed for me! A wave of emotion washed over me, and I teared up as he asked our Father to keep building a hedge around me and my family, prayed for wisdom and guidance in my life, blessing on my work, and asked God to continue using our efforts to convict the consciences of those encountering our team in the heart of downtown Columbus.


“Be encouraged, because I am!” he said after we prayed. “I keep a journal, and you’re going to be in it today.”

It is conversations like the one I had with Lamont that you are enabling to take place with your monthly support of my work. Thank you!


Our summer internship is coming to a close, and at the end of July the interns will be heading home. I have been blessed by many of the outreach notes they have written. For example, Your Child is Not Your Enemy, "I Can't Believe This, I Won't Support It" and Is Murder a form of Protection? I encourage you to read these as well as more of what they are saying about their summer on Created Equal’s blog.


Until next time, Rachel Burkey


I am indescribably grateful for your prayers! It meant so much to have Lamont pray for me during outreach, and I am overwhelmed and humbled to know that I have dozens of fellow believers keeping me in their prayers, so thank you! Click HERE and enter your gift amount in the bar marked “for Rachel Burkey” so your donation will go to me. Your donations are tax-deductible.


Tuesday, June 27, 2017

The Gift of Friendship, An Idaho Mountain Wedding, and Minds Changed - An Update from June

One thing that I will never fully understand is God’s gift of friendship. You pick a person and decide that you like them or want to spend more time with them. It just seems strange. I want you to know about a friend and colleague of mine, I call her "my Columbus sister.” 

Sarah and Me
I met Sarah (Jimenez) Harrington on my first Justice Ride back in 2015. I don’t really know how to describe to you what our friendship has become other than mutually encouraging, uplifting, and God inspired. 
No one of our colleagues would have envisioned us becoming close – we just have so many differences and come from different backgrounds. 

But as I got to know Sarah and our lack of similarities, the one thing that we do strongly share in common is the redemptive work the Lord has done in our lives! Challenging friends are hard to come by, so I am grateful for Sarah! She points me to Christ and encourages me in my growth as a Christian. You can’t know Sarah without telling that she is full of God’s love. 
In fact, once during outreach someone came up to her just to tell her that she was shining with a strange light. She used the opportunity to share Christ with him that day. 

In my last email newsletter I mentioned that I was leaving for a wedding. Sarah just got married to Luke Harrington and I had the honor of being part of the beautiful wedding in her home-state of Idaho. I am so excited for them!

Left: Luke and Sarah's wedding party
Right: The Idaho wedding

The week after I got back from Idaho, we left on our summer Justice Ride!
I wish you all could have been there for the post-outreach debrief times on this Justice Ride. 

Every day there was one story after another of minds that had been changed!

Our outreaches in Columbus have been very encouraging as well; there was one day this month that SEVEN people turned away from Planned Parenthood and cancelled their appointment! 
Praise the Lord for all He is continuing to do and blessing the fruit of our labor. 

Our team on the summer Justice Ride:
Top L: At the Harriet Beecher Stowe house in Cincinnati
Top R and Bottom L: In front of the OH state house
Bottom R: At the campground getting ready to head to Cleveland for a day of outreach

The week after the Justice Ride, we welcomed the summer interns in to our packed office. The atmosphere is one of change and much excitement. Often interns will decide to change their career after spending a summer with us, and return for full-time work. 
Please be praying for these interns, that they will be attentive to the Lord’s direction in their lives. Pray also whether they come back to work with us or go home to continue their lives, that they will leave prepared to winsomely defend life in their home towns and will carry their conviction to further the Kingdom and inspire others wherever they go.


If you have already joined my support team, will you host a “Fundraising for Life” evening with pro-life friends of yours for me to give a short presentation to and invite them to join this support team? If you have not yet, will you please become a monthly financial partner working to save lives? Click HERE, and enter your gift amount in the bar marked “for Rachel Burkey” so your donation will go to me. Your donations are tax-deductible.
~Rachel

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Anniversary That Never Should Have Been

“There is a part of me that doesn’t want to celebrate [our organization’s] anniversaries because it means that the killing is still happening.” -Mark Harrington

Outreach on our Spring Justice Ride with first-time rider Julia.
So many years have gone by since the Supreme Court’s decision that legalized abortion across the states, and so many lives lost. That is what my boss, Mr. Harrington, is referring to in the quote above. 
On occasion I worry about all the work that needs done before abortion will end, the minds that need changed, the necessary cultural shift in thought towards the value of humans, the hearts that need turned from sin and toward our Creator, when I stop and remember something vital. How little I am. I have no control in the lives of people I talk with. Every mind I see changed, every baby saved, every life repenting towards Christ: none of this is my work. It is the Lord’s. 

I love what Charles Spurgeon said about our responsibility as Christians:

“We are not responsible to God for the soul that are saved, but we are responsible for the Gospel that is preached, and for the way in which we preach it.”

I am encouraged as well as challenged by this truth. Encouraged because the end of abortion is not ultimately up to me, and challenged to be ever careful of how I communicate with my words and actions. 
On the right of the sign was a picture of Marla Cardamone who died at 19 from abortion complications. The left of the sign showed an aborted baby at 20 weeks old. After talking for a bit, I asked this student for his thoughts. He said: “on the right, that’s too young. And on the left - just, wow.” 

Our team is getting ready for the biggest and busiest season of the year for our organization. 

After our spring Justice Ride, students were looking for ways to stay active in the abortion debate and decided to apply for our summer internship program. We now have a team of 12 interns that are getting ready to join us for the summer! 
One of our interns, Victoria, said: “I haven't stopped thinking about the mission since the Justice Ride ended. My heart aches to give this all I can.” 

Evangeline, another intern, said: 

“I like how Created Equal's mission understands that the Gospel and the pro-life message go hand-in-hand.”

Evangeline understands that solely educating people about abortion is not enough. Don’t misunderstand me, when one mind is changed on abortion, that is an awesome thing! But changing a mind is the beginning of one’s eyes opening to truth. 
Ultimately the truth of Christ’s work on the cross and a relationship with Him is what saves lives. 


If you haven’t already, will you please join my monthly financial team working to save lives? I need you to continue this work.Click here and enter your gift amount in the bar marked “Intern RB” so your donation will go to me. 
Your donations are tax-deductible.

God bless you!




Friday, May 5, 2017

"God is going to forgive me for this." -A Tragic Story

Sam offering resources to a father choosing abortion
This morning my colleague Sam and I were at the Founders abortion facility in Columbus. While we were there Sam talked to 2 different men who were dropping their girlfriends off for an abortion. One man said:

"I understand. On any given day, I'd be out here with you but God is going to forgive me for this."

He completely understood that this abortion would end the life of his innocent child, and his thinking was that he and his wife could do it anyway and be forgiven afterwards. 
The first thing that went through my mind after Sam told me about their conversation was something from Romans 6 that my family had memorized when I was 4 or 5:

“What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? God forbid! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? Or don't you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” Romans 6:1-4


Yes. God forgives those who have had abortions. But like Paul says here in Romans, God forbid that we continue in sin because of His grace. This breaks my heart, and spurs me on to pray for these people choosing to end these precious lives.

I just wanted to take a minute to share this morning's events. If you want to support my work, click here, click on "Donate" and enter your donation amount in the space marked "for Intern - (RB)"

Please keep our team in your prayers! 

~Rachel


Sam at Founders this morning