MIDDLETOWN – A pregnancy counseling center that recently opened a branch in Middletown has a new tool in its arsenal that it hopes will convince more women to carry their pregnancies to term.
A Door of Hope, which also operates at locations in Wilmington and Newark, received an ultrasound machine Oct. 28 courtesy of the Knights of Columbus. Several state Knights officials were on hand as Bishop Malooly blessed the machine, half of which was paid for by the Delaware State Council of the Knights of Columbus and the other half by the Knights’ national organization.
Bishop Malooly commended A Door of Hope for their service to women.
“It is our fervent hope that mothers in difficult situations will enter through this door of hope and come to know not only the great work of God in the gift of life he has given to their child,” the bishop said, “but also the gift of love he wants to share with them.”
The ultrasound machine, which is portable if needed outside the center, fits into the Knights’ goals with respect to its pro-life activities, said Barry Swain, the state deputy. It is a vital tool in convincing women to keep their babies.
“When they see what they have, there’s a 90 percent chance they will keep the baby,” he said.
Bishop Malooly said he was impressed with the machine’s ability to provide an image of the baby. “It’s a whole different dynamic.”
Mary Lou Warwick, the supervisor of the Middletown center, said A Door of Hope opened Oct. 12 and has had a small but steady flow of clients despite the lack of marketing thus far. The center, located in a strip of retail outlets across East Main Street from St. Joseph’s Parish, does not yet have a sign over its door. An open house is scheduled for Nov. 14 from 9-11 a.m.
The nondenominational center offers pregnancy tests; classes on a range of subjects; referrals for assistance with housing, clothing, parenting and adoption; and counseling. All of its services are free and confidential.
The range of services “allows us to develop a long-term relationship with our clients,” Warwick said.
Clients who take the classes – which the center calls “hope” classes – can earn credits that can be used for items such as clothing, car seats and more.
“We want to let them know of all the resources available so hopefully they choose life,” Warwick said.
The selection of Middletown as the location of the newest center was based on population projections for Delaware, she added.