Jane Roe of the infamous Roe v. Wade Supreme Court case deciding that abortion would be the law of the land in 1973 died a few years ago. Norma McCorvey was Jane Roe. Unknown to many people, she never had an abortion, though her name will be forever identified with that terrible Supreme Court decision that led to the deaths of millions of babies by abortion. She was a very troubled woman, and certainly a pawn used by the abortion industry.
During the early days of abortion performed in our country following that decision, Norma worked at a Planned Parenthood. One of the early pioneers of the pro-life movement, Pastor Flip Benham, was part of Operation Rescue.
Operation Rescue opened an office next-door to the Planned Parenthood where Norma McCorvey worked. Flip spoke to her every day, telling her about Jesus, and urging her to leave Planned Parenthood and its grizzly work. Though on opposing sides of the abortion debate, they became unlikely friends. Norma was leading a lesbian lifestyle and living with her lover. However, the power of Christ and the gospel permeated her soul. She decided that her stance on abortion was wrong, and that what Flip was offering in her troubled life through the forgiveness and love of Jesus was something she wanted.
Pastor Flip led her to submit her life to the Lord. After a period of time, she separated from her lesbian lover. Not long after that, she was baptized by Flip Benham in her new life with Jesus as Lord. They remained lifelong friends until her death.
Near the end of her life, she seemed to recant her pro-life views and seemed bitter that she had been used both by the pro-life and the abortion proponents. However, Flip does not believe that that was the Norma McCorvey he knew. He agreed that she was a very troubled woman, but he knew that her spiritual conversion was real.
Flip had twin sons who later started the Charlotte sidewalk outreach ministry called Cities4Life. Cities4Life eventually merged with Love Life in 2020. The strong sidewalk outreach component is a vital part of Love Life’s ministry.
The day after the Supreme Court reversed the Roe v. Wade decision, I met up with Flip on the sidewalk at the busiest abortion center in the southeast. Here in North Carolina, abortions will likely increase as a result of the ruling. Nonetheless, we were rejoicing. The acknowledgment that abortion is no longer nationally defined as a constitutional right is a major victory for those of us who have labored long in the pro-life movement.
I asked Flip how he felt on this historic day. In his usual way, Flip gave me a history lesson. He shared what Churchill said when a pivotal battle of World War II was won. When asked his response to that victory, Churchill said, “This is not the beginning of the end, but the end of the beginning.“ That’s how Flip would characterize the momentous day when Roe v. Wade was reversed.
It will not change what he does. He will still preach his beloved Christ relentlessly. He will still show up every day on the sidewalks of abortion centers in the area. He will continue his work as a member of Operation Save America. To proclaim Christ and defend the rights of those who cannot defend themselves is his lifelong passion. That will not end until Jesus calls him home, or Abortion is completely absent as a choice in the heart of every person.