Taken from the Catholic News, Singapore (7 Jun 2009). [Visit Link]
SINGAPORE – Family Life Society and local volunteer organisation Save A Life recently organised the first Rachel’s Vineyard retreat in Singapore for people suffering from post-abortion trauma. The Apr 24-26 stay-in retreat was held at the Ignatian Spirituality Centre.
Because of the emotional pain and desire for secrecy that often surrounds an abortion experience, emotional problems may remain unresolved, only to surface later.
Rachel’s Vineyard helps by providing healing for post-abortion women, and for anyone whose life has been affected by the pain and trauma of abortion – husbands, siblings, parents, boyfriends and friends – said retreat facilitator Anne Sherston.
The retreat is a Catholic programme that relies on Scripture and rituals to communicate healing and forgiveness, but is beneficial to non-Catholics too.
This initiative is a milestone in the pro-life movement of the Archdiocese of Singapore as there has never been a formal recovery programme for post-abortion trauma in Singapore.
A male participant shared that he was “very humbled and privileged” to be part of Rachel’s Vineyard. He said that the retreat opened his eyes to the crucial roles men should play in the healing of their partners, and of themselves.
The retreat helped participants to realise that help, healing and support are available, and they don’t have to deal with the pains alone.
“We’re not going to be judged, especially when we’re telling our stories,” said Ms Sherston to the participants.
“That’s one of the benefits of group therapy,” noted Peter Callender, an expert therapist in psychodrama, who was also facilitating the retreat. “We too experience healing when we journey with and listen to the personal stories of others.”