First Image, which operates four Portland-area pregnancy resource centers and Oregon’s first mobile ultrasound unit, recently received four new ultrasound machines—a donation worth more than $120,000.
To do so, the evangelical ministry first had to overcome a theological barrier to forge a deeper partnership with pro-life Catholics.
As an affiliate of the Care Net network, First Image’s statement of faith is adapted from the National Association of Evangelicals. Those beliefs are “not completely in accord with Catholic faith and teaching,” according to the Archbishop of Portland, Alexander K. Sample.
Yet after more than a year of dialogue between First Image and the archdiocese, the two groups signed an agreement that made a way for Catholics to further support the evangelical ministry’s outreach while preserving their doctrinal distinctions.
“Our posture has always been to collaborate with as broad a swath as possible while holding to our evangelical core,” said Larry Gadbaugh, First Image CEO and a former pastor. “We wanted to further the mission that we had a common conviction about.”
Their collaboration allowed 4US, a charity founded by Catholics, to donate the machines to First Image despite the theological disagreements over its mission statement.
“It’s been both a blessing and an unfortunate reenactment of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation,” said Diego Wendt, co-founder of 4US, which has donated 44 machines to clinics across America. “When we’re dialoging, sometimes I feel like we’re going back 500 years. But it’s been a very beneficial walk.
“We are seeing the unity in the body of Christ that all of us prayed ...1
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