Rachel’s Vineyard co-ordinator seeks to break the silence surrounding abortion

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Home > Media > News > Rachel’s Vineyard co-ordinator seeks to break the silence surrounding abortion
Rachel’s Vineyard co-ordinator seeks to break the silence surrounding abortion

Anne Sherston says she wants to break through the silence surrounding abortion that often keeps people from seeking healing.

Tasmanian director for Rachel’s Vineyard, Anne has been involved with the program for 13 years and says it has been a struggle to encourage people to come forward for healing.

“People are afraid to come forward to say that they’ve had an abortion and they carry the shame, the guilt and all of that with them,” she said.

“The media makes it sound like it’s okay to talk about but people still hide away.”

But with the need just as great as ever, she says, “I’m hoping to break through that.”

Anne, who herself found healing from an abortion experience through the program, wants to bring the issue of abortion back to the fore of the public conversation where she believes it has “fallen by the wayside”.

“People need to talk about it. People need to say, ‘Yes, I’ve had an abortion,’ and come and get help in they want, if they need it.”

Running in Tasmania, but also in Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra, Brisbane and with a team hoping to be established in Perth, Rachel’s Vineyard retreats are for anyone who has been affected by abortion, both women and men.

Despite being involved for 13 years, Anne says she can see that there is still a need to be met in bringing hope and healing to those affected.

Those who attend retreats range widely in age and in details relating to their experience of abortion but find common ground, Anne says.

One retreat she led had a woman in her 70s, who’d experienced abortion 40 years previously, and a young woman in her late teens.

“It was quite interesting to see how they bonded,” Anne said.

“I think the program is so well written and designed that it just brings people together, it really does. Once the stories come out, they’re the same.”

Anne says that the change that takes place in people from Friday night through to Sunday is “amazing”.

“Friday night: people with long hair, for instance, their hair will be over their eyes, their face … then by Sunday their hair’s pulled back, they’ve got makeup on – they’re totally different, they’re dancing in the hallway sort of thing and it’s totally different. The load’s been lifted.”

A Rachel’s Vineyard retreat for those seeking hope and healing from abortion will be held in Tasmania from August 31 – September 2.

For more information contact Anne Sherston on 0478 599 241.