Ministry in Fayetteville has changed lives of many since opening its doors only one year ago
By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector
Crossroads opened its doors to ministry on Jan. 15 of last year and served more than 150 women and men from various walks of life. What’s more, decisions were made to support life and those who walked through the doors heard the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The pregnancy clinic offers “a safe place” where men and women facing unexpected pregnancies can explore all of their pregnancy options,” said Amanda Curtis, executive director of Crossroads Pregnancy Clinic. “Our trained advocates stand ready to lovingly guide them toward a life-affirming decision and our nurses provide free ultrasounds to reveal the life growing inside of them,” Curtis said.
Curtis noted that for several years she served on the board of directors for a nonprofit agency that provided mobile ultrasound units for pregnancy care clinics. One day God impressed upon her heart that while she was helping other clinics, “what about her own county?”
Even then, Curtis didn’t realize God was actually calling her to start and direct a pregnancy clinic. “Finally, I realized that God was telling me that I was to be the one to open the clinic.”
After talking with her husband and praying about the decision, Curtis resigned a good position with the Boeing Company in 2018. Though she left a high paying job with Boeing, she has no regrets. At Boeing “I didn’t see God moving a lot,” she acknowledged. At the Crossroads Pregnancy Clinic, “this is the first time I’ve really seen God at work.”
In late fall of 2017 before she officially resigned, a kickoff for a pregnancy clinic was held “to pitch the idea” to the community and more than 300 people from about 30 churches showed up, she recalled.
Curtis noted that the turnout gave her confidence that the community would support the clinic so they set out to launch the ministry in 2018. “We kept hitting roadblock after roadblock,” Curtis reflected. Looking back, she said she now realizes they were not ready to open.
They spent most of 2018 establishing a board of directors compiled of people from different denominations.
Though both Curtis and Amy Leimer, the clinic’s director of client services, are both Baptist and members of First Baptist Church, Fayetteville, they “wanted to cast a wide net” to bring in more people and support. Curtis stressed that all board members are Christians and must sign the clinic’s statement of faith.
Because of Curtis’ connections, Crossroads was able to open with an ultrasound machine and a printer on site. That is not always the case with start-up pregnancy clinics, Curtis acknowledged.
“It’s been a blessing,” Curtis acknowledged. “Anything that we needed, God has provided.”
Among those provisions was a facility they were able to rent in a convenient location in the heart of Fayetteville. Because it is near other buildings that share a parking lot, however, clients still have an air of privacy, Curtis said. The parking situation allows “them to blend in and have some anonymity,” she added.
The facility itself provides free pregnancy testing, free ultrasounds, one-on-one counseling and parenting classes where women can earn “baby bucks” to shop in the clinic’s “baby boutique” where they can select clothing, diapers and other items such as cribs, car seats, strollers and more for their babies.
“We have big dreams here,” Curtis said. “We want to see our community free from the impacts of abortion. We want a reality where every woman or couple facing an unplanned pregnancy chooses life.”
Curtis is appreciative of the support the clinic already has received from the community and churches of all denominations. “I have been overwhelmed by the level of support from our churches, especially those in the William Carey Baptist Association,” she said.
Don Pierson, pastor of Stewarts Chapel Baptist Church, Flintville, in WCBA, serves on the clinic’s board of directors.
He is appreciative of the leadership that Curtis and Leimer have provided to the pregnancy clinic. “We have a really good team,” he observed.
Pierson also noted that he has “been amazed by the support from local churches and Christians, especially those within the William Carey Association. Crossroads Pregnancy Clinic has helped to “mobilize our churches locally,” he affirmed.
The clinic has had success because the overwhelming majority of the women have chosen life said Leimer who has more direct contact with the clients. She knows of women who had people in their lives encouraging them to have abortions, but they chose life after counseling and seeing the ultrasounds of their babies.
The key, she said, is building relationships with the women and helping them to realize they don’t have to go through the pregnancy alone.
Leimer related the story of one father who came in who was not supportive of his girlfriend’s pregnancy. Once he saw his child, however, moving on the ultrasound, “his demeanor completely changed,” Leimer said.
The two women noted that they can think of only two clients who have left with their minds unchanged about having an abortion. “Those were very hard to accept,” Curtis admitted, but she holds on to the reality that God is ultimately in control of each situation.
“Thankfully, there are more positive and good stories than there are bad,” Curtis said.
Leimer added that she looks for opportunities to share Christ with those who visit the clinic.
“Not only do I get to encourage women and men facing unplanned pregnancies, but I also get to talk about Jesus to each and every client who walks through our doors,” she said.
“Some are more receptive than others, but I have never had anyone refuse to let me pray with them.”