So many people have no idea of the consequences of sex, international speaker Pam Stenzel told the full-house crowds at the fund-raising banquets for Dakota Hope Clinic, a pregnancy help center in Minot that serves people in central and northwestern North Dakota, according to information provided by Dakota Hope Clinic. The banquets were held Sept. 20 in Minot and Sept. 21 in Stanley.
“Pregnancy is the least of their worries. We have, in the last 40 years, turned pregnancy into a disease,” she said.
The real diseases caused by sex outside of marriage – chlamydia, HPV (human papillomavirus) and dozens of other sexually transmitted diseases – are rarely publicly addressed; yet they are the consequences of casual sex that lead to life-altering effects such as cervical cancer or Pelvic Inflammatory Disease which can result in infertility, she said.
Stenzel referred to Centers for Disease Control statistics that noted more than 60% of new STD infections were among people age 15 to 24.
“In 1982, one in 18 of your classmates were infected” with an STD, Stenzel said. “Today, it’s one in four.”
Teaching young people that sex outside of marriage is okay as long as they use birth control or condoms to avoid pregnancy is like teaching your child that it is okay to shoplift as long as they know how to avoid getting caught, she said.
“You cannot sin safely, and yet that’s what our culture believes. Do not be deceived,” Stenzel said. Birth control and condoms do not guarantee safety from sexually transmitted diseases or pregnancy, she added.
Her commitment to sharing the truth with teenagers and young adults has led Stenzel to a 27-year career of counseling and public speaking. A current resident of St. Petersburg, Florida, Stenzel was in Minot in 2012 as the speaker for the first Dakota Hope Clinic banquet, held to raise funds so the clinic could open in 2013.
“God created sex, but he created it with a boundary – marriage,” Stenzel shared. “If you are not married, don’t do it! If you are married, go for it with the person to whom you are married.”
Stenzel praised the work of Dakota Hope Clinic in educating young people, counseling women and men who are experiencing unplanned pregnancies and guiding them toward life-affirming decisions, supporting women who have experienced the trauma of abortion and advocating for adoption for those who are not ready to parent their children.
Stenzel is especially grateful to pregnancy help clinics like Dakota Hope because she was conceived as a result of her 15-year-old mother being raped. Many people who profess to be against abortion say abortion is permissible if the pregnancy occurred from rape.
“I am still a human being. I still have value,” Stenzel said. “I do not believe that I deserve the death penalty for the crime of my biological father.”
In addition to speaking at the banquets while in North Dakota, Stenzel also spoke at several area schools and gave a free public presentation for youth.
Dakota Hope Clinic is located at 315 Main St S, Suite 205, Minot, and offers a 24-hour hotline. To learn more, visit dakotahope.org.
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