Matthew Law, 17, a member of St. John the Baptist Church in Zachary, speaks from the heart about the gift of life because he was saved from abortion. He returns his gift of life to God by sharing his story so babies in peril of being aborted may also live.

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Matthew Law, 17

Hometown: Zachary

School: Home schooled

Parish: St. John the Baptist, Zachary

Law is president of Teens4Life chapters in Zachary and Baton Rouge. He started both chapters when he became involved with the American Holocaust Memorial, a former abortion clinic in Baton Rouge, and with March for Life Pilgrimage in Washington, D.C.

“I started the Teens4Life group in Baton Rouge for all area youth to help restore and preserve the memorial grounds and to bring awareness to the fact that we must stand up and fight for the dignity and sanctity of all life,” Law said.

In addition to working with other teens on the grounds and cleaning the Holocaust Memorial building, Law said, he gives tours of the facility, “speaking of the horrors that occurred there through abortion.” He added, “Over 30,000 babies were killed there.”

According to Law, Teens4Life in Baton Rouge is also raising funds for a memorial wall for the unborn there, as well as an eternal flame.

Law started the St. John Teens4Life program to promote pro-life issues in his own church parish. The group raised $800 during a baby bottle fund-raiser campaign, which helped 10 youth, through financial assistance, to go to the March for Life. Additionally, the group helped the eighth-grade school of religion students raise money for chastity rings.

Law, who has attended Louisiana Camp Joshua in Baton Rouge and hopes to attend the Joshua Leadership Institute, also in Baton Rouge, to learn more about being a pro-life leader, said he believes it is so important to fight for the lives of the unborn that he missed his grandmother’s funeral in order to attend his first March for Life in 2010.

“My grandfather encouraged me to attend the march anyway in her honor, and I carried her rosary on the march with me. I kept vigil at her bedside for two days and was present when she took her last breath. I had never experienced anything like that before,” Law said.

The youth, who is adopted, learned during his second trip to March for Life that he had almost been aborted. His mother, Christine Law, who went with him on the trip, had been praying to God for years that he would let her know when the time was right to tell her son the full story behind his adoption. After having a vision of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception in a dream, she knew the time was right. She shared the story on the bus, and Matthew indicated his acceptance of the message, and the youth expressed amazement.

Matthew Law’s biological mother had lived on the streets and was sexually active. When she found out she was pregnant, she debated between having an abortion and giving her baby up for adoption. During this time Christine Law had been counseling her and talking to her about adopting Matthew.

Matthew’s biological mother was six months pregnant with him when she went to an abortion clinic that, unbeknownst to her, did not perform abortions in late pregnancy. A nurse called Christine Law, whom Matthew’s birth mother had listed as an emergency medical contact number, and Christine Law then spoke to Matthew’s biological mother. During the phone call she persuaded the birth mother to forgo the abortion. For the next three months, Christine Law faced many trials concerning Matthew’s adoption, including flying to Philadelphia and unsuccessfully influencing Matthew’s biological mother to let her adopt Matthew. Just as Christine Law had given up hope of adopting Matthew, the attorney’s office in Philadelphia that had initially handled Matthew’s adoption process called her and told her Matthew’s birth mother decided to let her adopt Matthew.

“When I found out that I was a baby saved from abortion, I was even more amazed by the power of God,” Matthew Law said. “My life had come full circle in a way, because now, here I was fighting to save lives the way my mother fought to save mine.”

Matthew Law said his adoption story is his and his mother’s story, because God also saved her from death after her birth. His mother was born prematurely and had several medical issues. The doctors told her mother that she would be brain damaged and that they should leave her at the hospital to die. “Her mother fought for her the way my mother fought for me,” Matthew law said.

He further explained, “I want people to know that we are survivors and that our lives mean something – something powerful in the sight of God. I want the other youth to understand that the decision for an abortion or for neglect or abuse can come in a blink of an eye when you least expect it and that it doesn’t just happen to ‘those’ people or to the ‘bad’ people.”

The youth added, “People in all walks of life make mistakes, and it is important to hold on tight to our faith and our spirituality in those times even more than in the good times.”

For his Christian leadership and witnessing of Gospel values, Law was presented with the St. Timothy Award at the Diocese of Baton Rouge Youth Conference in February of this year.