01 Nov “My soul has been set on fire” – 2018 weDignify Conference reflection
On October 20, 2018, students from 7 universities gathered for the 2018 weDignify Conference. In the coming weeks, we’ll share some of their reflections from the day. First up is Alex, a sophomore at the University of Illinois – Urbana-Champaign.
Going into this conference, I wasn’t really sure what to expect. I figured that I would hear speakers who would tell me why I should be pro-life, why it matters that I take a stand, why I am needed, and other rudimentary ideas that I had heard from regular conversations with my pro-life peers.
But this conference went so much deeper than that. I learned how to act, how to respond, how to own my pro-life identity, and how to live in a way that inspires others to love humanity.
In particular, one speaker, Jay Watts, gave me the tools I needed to be able to respond to pro-life arguments that I had been grasping for. He calmed my fears of being judged for my opinions, taught me how to always uphold the dignity of the person I am talking to while also dignifying humanity as a whole, and showed me how to get to the root cause of pro-life beliefs in any argument by using science, philosophy, and logic. I had been struggling with initiating conversations and responding to pro-choice arguments, but Jay’s talk informed and inspired me to have these conversations.
I realized that the pro-life cause is bigger than my fears and reputation. The pro-life cause is bigger than all of us.
This conference also increased my confidence in my ability to make a change and showed me how I am not alone in this fight. None of us are alone – we all want to uphold human dignity and make our world a place that cherishes all human life.
My soul has been set on fire: I left feeling more convicted, hopeful, and more prepared to face an apathetic world.
Since the conference, I have been starting more pro-life conversations. I used to shy away from them because I felt unprepared, unknowledgeable, and outnumbered. But, my attitude has changed, and I’ve even started talking to my (extremely pro-choice) twin sister about the issue.
In the past, these conversations ended with yelling and pain, as neither of us could control our emotions and neither truly had an objective argument to offer. But since the conference, our conversations have been more frequent, less divisive, more sophisticated, and more educated. I haven’t changed her heart yet, but I now welcome these conversations and I have all the tools I need to fight for human life.
Alex Lehan is a sophomore at the University of Illinois – Urbana-Champaign studying mathematics.