K-LOVE interview with Lighthouse Women's Center Director Lynn Grandon

KENNY NOBLE CORTES: “Teen pregnancy is an ongoing problem, with far-reaching consequences. Lighthouse is a 'licensed medical center fully equipped to help women to make important decisions about their reproductive health.' Lighthouse supports 'boyfriends, spouses, family and friends - who are navigating these important decisions alongside the women in their lives.' And that's from the Lighthouse website, LighthouseDenver.org. Our very special guest this week is Lynn Grandon, executive director, Lighthouse Women's Center. Welcome to Closer Look, Lynn.”

LYNN GRANDON: “Thank you very much for having us.”

CORTES: “Tell us a little bit about yourself, who you are, your areas of expertise. And the passion that brought you to this position.”

GRANDON: “My background is in women's health. My husband and I have six children, so we really love the gifts that God gives us. I really became passionate about this over 10 years ago. I originally helped open a center similar to this in the Midwest.  It was very, very successful. So this is my second center.  I really feel centers like this are addressing a very serious need in our culture- As our culture continues to deteriorate, related to the sanctity and value of every single human life. We opened in October. It's very interesting for your listeners to know that our center is directly across the street from the second-largest Planned Parenthood in the whole United States. So we felt like we really needed a presence.”

CORTES: “Lynn, the following is also from your website: 'Too many women are living with regret because they were not given the opportunity to learn the information that Lighthouse freely shares.' Can you expand on that?”

GRANDON: “I'm happy to do that. Because all of these years of working with women that have had abortions – and then maybe coming in because they're considering a repeat abortion. When we very graciously explain to them either the procedures that are involved, or simple understanding of early embryology, which so many people are unaware of.  Often they say to us this phrase, which is very impactful: 'If I would have known then what I know now, I would have made a different choice.' And so that is a big key in what we do, when we go out into the community and when we talk to the gals that walk into our offices. We just explain to them the truth about early human development and explaining the procedure that they're considering because many, many women – 85% is the national average – who learn these truths, and then also are able to see their unborn child through ultrasound imaging – absolutely change their mind and say, 'I could never do that now.' And so, success is really based on very sound methodology.”

CORTES: “This is Closer Look. My name is Kenny Noble Cortes. And our very special guest this week on Closer Look is Lynn Grandon, executive director, Lighthouse Women's Center of Denver. We're addressing the topic of pregnancy, particularly in younger women. Can you Lighthouse Women's Center works, in practical ways, in the lives of these young women?”

GRANDON: “When they come in the door, they are greeted warmly. All of our services are free. Our counseling finds out where they're at in their life. Each gal has a particular story to tell, her circumstances are unique. We will give her free medical services, free ultrasound imaging, all of those things that she needs to get her through that crisis. And then the beauty of Lighthouse is we will then connect her up with whatever she needs, through all of our resources, all the community resources,  medical resources that she needs. We work with Catholic Charities of Denver, that has a huge element of care for women, not during their pregnancy only, but afterward, to help them with child care and early childhood development, things like that. So we are very linked in to the community for regular resources, as well as medical and emergency housing, shelter, you name it, we've got it.”

CORTES: “It's not about what has happened, it's about what is, and what kind of choices are going to be made from this point onward.”

GRANDON: “Correct. And so we try to get the focus off of just them. Because often girls that are considering what they're going to do as they're moving forward – we are so much a culture of self-absorption and selfishness. If I may, I'll quote Mother Teresa who said, to girls who are considering abortion, “It's a terrible thing that...a child should die so that you may live as you wish.” According to that idea, that's when we try to appeal to the gal and say, 'You know, this isn't just about you. There's another person growing inside of you who has an eternal soul, who's been made in the image of God. And we believe that God ordains every person to be put at a particular moment in human history, for a specific reason. And we try to appeal to them about the potential of that child, and who that child may become and the impact that they may have on the world. And many of the girls that have sound reasoning skills, they get that. And they've often said to us, you know, when you talked about the potential of my child, then that's when my heart turned.”

CORTES: “Do you ever refer people to other organizations?”

GRANDON: “I think our methodologies are for anyone. But if we see issues that we know that we cannot address, such as mental health issues, things like that, we know the organizations and the professionals in place in Denver where we will send them to. And our resource and referral manual is just massive. So we go A to Z with them. What do you need? Where do you need to go? How can we help you? We plug them in as best we can. We're kind of like an emergency room for a girl in a crisis pregnancy. And then we resource them out. Does that make sense?”

CORTES: “Yes. This is Closer Look. My name is Kenny Noble Cortes and our very special guest this week on Closer Look is Lynn Grandon, executive director, Lighthouse Women's Center. The website is LighthouseDenver.org. Are there any special considerations, circumstances or qualifications that clients must meet before being accepted by Lighthouse Women's Center?”

GRANDON: “The only thing that we absolutely have to have is a positive and verifiable form of identification, that they have to give us, and we have to make a photocopy of, before they come in. And that really helps us screen out false patients, or maybe even a plant from an organization that would try to harm us.”

CORTES: “Does that happen frequently?”

GRANDON: “I wouldn't say frequently. But we do know, from working in this industry, that certain organizations love to come in and try to falsify things and try to get places like ours in some kind of trouble. But they've been non-effective because our methodologies are truth and wholesomeness and goodness and honesty. So you can't mess with that.”

CORTES: “Lynn, in your opinion, how is the current economy impacting the number of pregnancies. Are they directly related to one another?”

GRANDON: “It's interesting that you would ask that because the current economy always seems to make life more and more difficult for the poor. But when the poor panic, they still come up with money for what they need. And in our case, we are trying very hard to dissuade the poor [from] panicking when they conceive, to not head to a drugstore to obtain the morning-after pill, which is not cheap; or to head to somewhere to get a chemical abortion – which by the way, for your listeners, costs the same as a surgical abortion even though it's just putting pills in your body, it still costs the same amount. But  they still do that. And, so often, gals that are in unplanned pregnancies will say, 'I can't afford a child.' And that's where our services and our resources really kick in and say, 'There are people that can help you through this time in your life. And there is value, worth and dignity to the baby that you are carrying. And we'll prove that to you by helping oversee these expenses. And that gets them through the crisis.”

CORTES: “In respect to the morning-after pill, has that altered any of the policies or the ways in which Lighthouse Women's Center interacts with their clients?”

GRANDON: “It's very interesting that when we will get calls asking - Do we administer that? - we counter that by making women aware of the need to understand how their body has been created by God, to understand their cycles better. And we initiate the conversation by asking them: Where are they at in their feminine cycle? Because they may not even need it. And that often stuns the clients. And then we explain, you can learn wholesome, natural ways to understand your gift of fertility. And many times that will bring the women in because they're so curious to know that there are better and healthier ways to manage their fertility than they have been experiencing. Because women are only fertile during a certain time in their cycle. And we can educate them about that. And it's fascinating to watch them learn about Natural Law because things work according to the way they were created. We can't pour molasses in a car and expect it to run. We can't put a tomato plant in a closet and expect it to grow. We can explain to these women how God created their body and there's a better, more wholesome way  to care for themselves. It's a great opener of dialogue with us.”

CORTES: “Could you expand on the awareness of the cycle that you're referring to and fertility? What exactly are we talking about here?”

GRANDON: “Well, we're talking about aligning with Natural Law within women. And there are definitive methodologies that are available for all women: Catholic, Christian, Muslim, non-believers, because it's all scientifically based. And it's absolutely fascinating science. The simplest one is called the Billings Method. Anybody can Google that: the Billings Method. You can learn the science that shows every single woman how to look for biological signs within her body that can help her monitor her fertility any particular day of her cycle. Just above that is something called the Sympto-Thermal Method. That is by the Couple-to-Couple League. And that aligns with learning the natural biological temperature of your body, along with other biological signs. And, then even higher above that is something called NaPro Technology, short for Natural Procreative Technology, which is out there. You can Google that and learn all about it. And that is so precise that it is now being used by many many doctors to diagnose, in a natural way, even serious infertility issues by getting to the root of the problem, solving that problem within the women's body. And then she can be able to conceive once those problems are addressed, rather than going the immoral route of artificial reproductive technologies. And these are sound, and absolutely thrilling, to investigate.”

CORTES: “Can interested parties go to the website to learn more about that?”

GRANDON: “They could call any of us there at Lighthouse and we'd be happy to dialogue with them or give them further resources.

CORTES: “O.K., that's a good thing. How is Lighthouse Women's Center funded?”

GRANDON: “All of the traditional ways that centers like this are funded. Private donors, churches, organizations, trusts, all the way around.”

CORTES: “And, in that context, the website is a good place to start if you have a donation that you wish to provide to Lighthouse Women's Center.”

GRANDON: “Yes, that would be a blessing. Donations to efforts like these are not inconsequential. They make an eternal difference.”

CORTES: “And the website, again, is LighthouseDenver.org. Lynn, what is the single most important message that you would like our listeners to take away from this important discussion on pregnancy and young women?”

GRANDON: “We've got to educate our women - our younger women - in this culture that is leaning so much toward not respecting human life. We've got to educate them about early embryology, about abortion procedures, etc., because our young people are our ambassadors for each other. We know for sure, Ken, that young people when find out they're pregnant, they tell their friends first before they tell their parents. So if we can empower our young people with good truth and understanding, they can be the ambassadors to bring their friends to a decision for life.”

CORTES: “Thank you very much for joining us this week on Closer Look. Lynn Grandon, executive director, Lighthouse Women's Center, in Denver. And our very special guest on the topic of teen pregnancy this week on Closer Look. Thank you very much for joining us Lynn.”

GRANDON: “God bless you.”