Protect Life Ministry

St. Joseph Parish is the proud sponsor of a dynamic and passionate ministry protecting and promoting the dignity of the human person from conception to natural death. Our Womb-to-Tomb approach allows us to honor God serving His people at all stages of life.

Our Protect Life Ministry operates under the charisms of St. Teresa of Calcutta (Mother Teresa) and her gift of stewardship to the poor. Her gentle nature brought many troubled souls to the love and healing of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is through this welcoming spirit that we hope to offer compassion, consolation, and courage to those who are struggling.

Our ministry has many goals, but it always needs more ministers. Whether you are able to only give a little time or you are called to be a formative leader, please consider reaching out to our ministry leaders to learn more about how you are able to protect life at all stages.

Ministry Leaders:
Ralph Willemin 616-308-3282 cell
Jill Thelen 989-640-1025

Good evening from the Protect Life team,
Here is about two and a half minutes of straight truth. Please listen, read what is in Proposal 3, and then help us share that truth.
Ralph Willemin
Advisor to the Protect Life Ministry

Some Things I Know

Today let’s talk about some things I know to be true.
I know that only about an hour from St. Joseph parish, someone had to leave a dangerous
situation. I know this because one of the organizations we support provides a safe place
in this city.

I know that some of the people who show up in this safe place are about the same age as
our high school student-leaders. I know this organization needs help to support these
young people with no other place to go.

I know that there are over 13,000 school-age students in Ionia and Montcalm counties
who on a regular basis don’t get an evening meal.

I know this because one of the organizations we support makes take-home meals for
some of these people. I know some are about the same age as the student-leaders on our

I know that there are organizations that provide free essential items for families, for
newborn children, and for children up to three years old, all at no cost.

I know that some of these parents are about the same age as our college-age team leaders.

I know this because we saw the cars line up to receive this support when we were
dropping off supplies to help them.

I know that the pro-life movement is about actively supporting all life. I know that
forming committees to talk about the problem while being easy and certainly keeps
distance from the need is not solving the need.

I know that our Protect Life team knows all of this too. If you want to help us, let me
know. Or let Jill know.

Thank you in advance,
Ralph Willemin
Co-Advisor to the Protect Life Ministry

Choosing to Respond

To react or to respond? While the two words seem to mean the same thing,
in reality they are much different. Knowing the difference is vital for those
who will join us in the true pro life movement.

When passion and intense emotion are thrown into the mix, reaction will
nearly always follow. And usually truth slips away as angry rhetoric and
vitriol move to the forefront.

Angry rhetoric and vitriol will unfortunately be on display in our state as the
next election looms in November. It has already started. The attack ads and
the false statements are filling the airwaves.

In my years working in the true pro life movement, the thing that has stuck
with me the most is the level of misunderstanding about what we do and
why we do it.

We can’t get bogged down in this level of misinformation. Our young team
will continue to follow our plan. We will continue to provide material
support to organizations that make take home meals for students who don’t
always get an evening meal.

We will continue to provide material support to organizations that shelter
and protect women in dangerous situations who would not have a safe place
without help.

We will work with parents and groups who assist children with Autism and
Down syndrome. We will continue to visit assisted living centers that care
for the elderly.

We will continue to work to support the entire family unit including parents
and their children, both unborn and born.

I read statements that we don’t care about women. Emotion tells me to react
and quickly condemn the statement. Would it change the opinion of the
author? Probably not.

Experience in the true pro life movement teaches us to instead, respond with
calm, compassionate truth.

We need to calmly, compassionately explain the facts to people. We need to
get people to take the time to read what is really in the very broad
“Reproductive Freedom Act” that is being promoted in our state.
We do care about women, and we care about families. We did read the
entire proposed amendment and we know the truth.

I believe the majority of the people who say they are in favor of “abortion
rights” are caring individuals. Our job is to respond with compassionate
truth so they understand. When they recognize the facts, I believe most
caring individuals will make the right choice.

Then we can work together as a unified force to really care for parents, for
children and for all those most in need.

Be calm, respond with kindness and think before reacting. Lives will be
saved and families will be strengthened. Strong families lead to strong

Ralph Willemin
Co-advisor to the Protect Life team