About five years ago at 5 a.m., Rhonda Darville got a word from the Lord to leave Florida to go back home to the Bahamas to carry out pregnancy help and pro-life work. Initially, she and her husband answered the call by starting a pregnancy help center, The Bahamas GodParent Center. However, they soon realized what they originally thought would meet the needs within their community wasn’t quite going to work without an additional foundation.
“We don’t have the same media push with the pro-life movement here in Bahamas [as in the US],” Darville explains. Her response? Starting ProLife Bahamas, the educational arm of The Bahamas GodParent Center.
This past March, the Bahamas GodParent Center hosted their first “Equipped to Engage Pro-Life Training Conference,” an apologetics training conference led by Darville and guest pro-life speaker and trainer Mike Spencer.
Darville says that pregnancy help and pro-life work is a life-and-death kind of work, and The Bahamas GodParent Center discovered there was a need for solid education surrounding the issue—not only for the Bahamas, but also for those in the community who desire to volunteer or partner with the center.
“We really wanted people who wanted to come alongside the ministry to be educated, so we opened up the conference to supporting churches, schools, and volunteers,” she says.
The March 2019 conference boasted 50 attendees, comprising representatives from five supporting churches, two supporting schools, as well as individuals who were seeking to volunteer with the center or prospectively serve on the board.
“We have to be able to articulate what we believe and why we believe it—and be able to stand on that,” Darville says.
At the conference, the whys of pro-life in the Bahamas were discussed as well as the case for Christian engagement in abortion culture, the case for life, and what abortion is and what it entails. In addition, individuals from the post-abortive group the GodParent Center serves wanted to tell their stories, and they did so—which evolved into a time where others in the audience bravely shared their own stories.
“People in the trainings stood up and started to share their testimonies,” Darville joyfully explained. “One pastor who was slated to be aborted stood up and shared his own story. Another pastor later told us that the information they were given [at the conference] was valuable to evangelize to those that they meet—essentially, basic evangelism and how to engage in the correct way.”
Last year, Pregnancy Help News reported how Darville had plans to open up satellite centers across the Bahamas islands. Currently, the GodParent Center services Nassau, the main island, with goals to expand.
“We had to push that back because we needed an umbrella organization (ProLife Bahamas), and that is now the catalyst to start the satellite centers,” she says. “We’re putting together resources and kits for people who want to come together and do this.”
Part of that responsibility includes empowering volunteers and supporters through education like the Equipped to Engage conference. The need is great for both caring post-abortive support and pro-life preventative work in the Bahamas, and the GodParent Center plans to increase preventative education in addition to providing post-abortion healing support.
Photo courtesy of the Bahamas GodParent Center
The center intends to hold more trainings for both students and churches like the one in March, hosting an Equipped to Engage conference for students this fall as well as smaller individual workshops to target specific groups and churches in the future. Darville is also in the very beginnings of hopeful talks with an organization that has a large youth audience in the Bahamas, which will lead to an increase in the number of youth the center is in contact with for preventative education.
In the last two months, the GodParent Center has had two people choose life and is now working with them to support them in that journey—and just this May the center was able to start providing free pregnancy tests to the community as well as partner with two new churches this last March.
“I never thought I’d be back home in the Bahamas doing what I’m doing now,” Darville says as she reflects over the past five years.
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“I’m doing this for my generation, the next generation, and the generation to come. We’re looking at next-generation leaders, and I’m looking at a succession plan already. . . . It’s about building something that lasts, doing the work God has called you to do, and saving hundreds of thousands of children and restoring families in our country.”