By Sharon Mager
EASTPORT, Md.—Maryland/Delaware Baptists will gather at First Baptist Church of Eastport on March 12 for “Prayer for Human Dignity,” a time of song, testimony, and prayer before heading to join others for the Maryland March for Life. Many will gather at St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church to march towards Lawyers Mall to bring awareness to human dignity issues. Kevin Smith, Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware’s Executive Director, will lead the event.
Glenn Swanson, pastor of Bayside Baptist Church, Chesapeake Beach, and his wife Sherri will speak at the event. The couple has led the church in standing for life at all stages.
In January the church put a display of crosses on the lawn, representing every year since Roe vs. Wade was passed. This year there were 45 crosses.
Glenn and Sherri have been immersed in issues related to human dignity for decades. They preach it, and they live it. The couple has two grown children, Matthew and Luke, and their daughter Anna. They adopted Anna, who has special needs, from Russia, almost two decades ago.
They can’t talk about Anna’s adoption story without huge smiles. The love of God shines through as they share about their beautiful daughter, who was born the year they began to feel God calling them to adopt, and how God led them through the process.
As a result of that process, seeing God’s hand throughout, and the many orphans awaiting families, they were eventually led to starting an adoption ministry at the church. “JAMESone27 ” orphan care is designed to encourage those who are led to adopt or foster children to take the steps forward and to encourage the church to be involved at some level of support. Glenn and Sherri have huge hopes to expand that ministry.
“We’re for life, life at all stages,” Glenn said. It includes the unborn and it includes the elderly in the last stages of life, he said. “If we’re for life… we have to look at Matthew 25, feeding those who are hungry, visiting those who are in prison. That’s where our heart is… It’s the Gospel living it out. It starts with the pastors and leaders of the church,” Glenn said.
The church is also embracing those with special needs. They’re one of several churches partnering with Emmanuel Church, Huntingtown, to help with the annual “Night to Shine” prom for those with special needs on Feb. 10. Glenn and Sherri’s daughter Anna will participate in the event.
Glenn and Sherri will share their journey and about their heart for orphans and foster children, and the way God is using their church to be a beacon of hope for life and for redemption. In addition to the 45 crosses, there are three that stand out in front of them all representing the saving grace of Jesus to all, including those who have had abortions, and those in the abortion industry.
Glenn said many people, including many Roman Catholics, stop to tell him how much they appreciate the display.
Catholics have in many ways led the way in standing up for human dignity, Glenn said. It’s time for Protestants to use the common ground and stand with them.
The “Prayer for Human Dignity” begins at 4 p.m. Afterwards, those who will march will gather at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, just a few blocks away, and march to Lawyers Mall at 6:30 p.m. The BCM/D will provide signs.
Roland Warren will be the guest speaker for the Maryland March for Life. Warren is CEO of Care Net. He has also served as president of the National Fatherhood Initiative and authored the book, “Bad Dads of the Bible: 8 Mistakes Every Good Dad Can Avoid.”
There is a small parking area at FBC, Eastport, and limited on-street parking. There are also several parking garages in the area including the Noah Hillman Garage, closer to St. Mary’s Church and Gott’s Court Garage, closer to Lawyer’s Mall, as well as local garages in the Annapolis area including the Noah Hillman Garage, 150 Gorman St, Annapolis, MD 21401.
For more information, contact Sharon Mager, 800.466.5290 ext 251.