I hadn’t been in a couple of months, but yesterday I decided to get up early to escort at the clinic. Thursday was the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, so the issue of choice and personal freedom was on my mind. After not being there for a while the scene was especially eery, or maybe that was the fog from the river. It’s easy to forget about the gauntlet these women are forced to run in order to go to the doctor.

On Thursday I went to a candlelight vigil that was held by the Kentucky Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. I was invited by a friend who works with them, though she is an atheist like myself. It was the first time I’ve been inspired in a church in a long time. Most of these people may believe in supernatural stuff I don’t, but we all seem to share the same humanist values of compassion, understanding, and social justice.

I think this was a very important thing for me to see. While out defending the clinic’s clients on Saturday mornings, I get to see the crazy side of religion. Most of the protesters appear to be either conservative Catholics loudly saying the rosary (prayer as a weapon?), students from the Southern Baptist Seminary, or occasionally a busload from the Kentucky Mountain Bible College (who always seem to keep a good distance from the rosary-praying Catholics). There are two women in particular who like to yell at the clients, and one of these will continuously jump around yelling and preaching like she’s full of holy spirits.

Never in my life have I been exposed to such incredibly different types of religion. It gives me hope to see that there are some truly sane and compassionate religious people out there, and that I get to work right along-side them in hopes of a better world.