Roe vs. Wade in 1973 had gone unanswered in Gaston County, until on November 13, 1985, at 10:00 o’clock a.m. an initial meeting of the Board of Directors was held at the law offices of Cherry, Bekaert, & Holland here in Gastonia.
Seven men and women came together as God had encouraged their hearts to respond compassionately to the needs of those facing unplanned pregnancies. They gathered to initiate a ministry that would, upon opening their doors for clients in September of 1986, have an immediate impact.
- No longer would words be heard without matching deeds and actions that gave a visible expression of our concern for the abortion issue.
- No longer would someone who could not afford a pregnancy test be denied one.
- No longer would the longing for a listening ear, a compassionate, caring counselor when the crisis of pregnancy came about be denied.
- No longer would the everyday needs of material assistance and crisis calls from clients of needing a listening ear, go unanswered.
On that day, this Board of Directors, composed of Dale Chase, Rev. Marion Clark, Audrue McMahan, David Ward, Rev. Marlin Mull, Peter Caprise, Rachel Pichet and Cathy Epperson nominated officers, set meeting times, elected an Executive Director, and voted to request information from a sister CPC. Other Board members unable to attend that day were: Steve Baker, Laura C. Atkins, Rev. M.O. Owens, Dr. Glenn Phoenix and Dr. Thomas Will.
From that humble beginning, the Crisis Pregnancy Center of Gaston County has been in three pivotal rental locations and finally was able to purchase property and a home in July 1996. The journey from those initial days included leadership from diversely skilled Board of Director Members, to Executive Directors, to multi-talented staff, to service by Volunteers that utilized the gifts of individuals as well as the strengths of an interdenominational ecumenical corporate body working for the cause of the unborn.
The history of the Crisis Pregnancy Center of Gaston County, Inc. has included immeasurable faith, the development of a support base that transcends race, gender and religion. The experience of serving in this setting allows women, men and their families to see the efforts of all combined to meet the needs of one. It is an awesome testimony to see so many varied agencies, individuals, and churches tackling this single issue.
From its inception, the Crisis Pregnancy Center of Gaston County, Inc. has now served 50,000+ clients, been blessed by faithful volunteers, trusted God for budget needs numerous times, and made an impact in this County that is now indelible and indispensable.
Over the years, an expanding staff, a diversified Board, an emphasis on abstinence, an ultrasound/medical clinic, seasoned and well trained volunteers, public presentations, our annual fund-raisers, and ad. infinitum are making the future as bright as God’s genius and calling.
Over twenty years later, those actions are bearing much fruit:
- Now, Shepherds, within the church of our Lord, the Body of Christ, can strongly affirm Biblical Sanctity of life from conception to natural death and point them to a place in Gaston County that ministers without manipulation;
- Now, those who have hidden the guilt of past abortions can have a place of healing, experiencing first hand, God’s unconditional love,
- Now, the pro-life constituency can prayerfully point to a place of refuge that will meet not only physical needs but will unashamedly present the gospel of Jesus Christ as the ultimate answer.