Thorn explained to CNA that the outreach goes beyond what you'd imagine. "Just last night one of the priests here, when he heard what I did, said, 'Oh, that's some of the most moving ministry I've ever done.'”
"So, this awareness of the woman who believes she's committed the unforgivable sin; that when you reject the creation, you've rejected the creator, then to be forgiven and to be set free... that's what priests are called to do.
"This is a ministry not only for women and for men ... but also for priests. It affirms who they are, it is the essence of their call to be priests.”
When asked if the ministry has a place only within the Catholic Church, Thorn responded, "When I was in Romania, I was with the Orthodox, with the Greek Catholics and the Roman Catholics.
"Any place there's a sacramental model, Project Rachel fits,"she said.
The next step in the process of branching out to other Eastern European nations, Thorn told CNA, would be a Project Rachel seminar including leaders from these nations, "probably in Poland, and probably in the next year."
The idea is to bring leaders to the seminar from a number of Eastern bloc countries and send them home well informed. "Then we'll take it from there," said Thorn.
Part of the education would be taken care of through the manual on post-abortion healing (of which Thorn was the primary author), recently revised by the U.S. Bishops' Conference, to share knowledge with bishops' conferences abroad and lead them to offer the ministry in their areas. "If that happens, they can translate it top-down to the priests, and then if we get religious women involved we have the means to provide care wherever."
"If we could get communities of religious to take this as a charism... that will then allow Eastern Europe and Latin America to move very quickly."
Thorn told CNA that she's also seeing, "a lot of interest in mental health professionals,” but that “really the Church is the ideal place to do this. We have the means.”
"When I started doing Project Rachel, it was clear to me. We have clergy, we have mental health professionals, we have all these people within the Church that can provide care in this network and it's a holistic response.
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"We have the opportunity and the means to do this any place in the world," she added.
Vicki Thorn has just released a book on the introduction of a ministry for post-abortion syndrome within the Church, called, “Project Rachel: The Face of Compassion.” The book is currently available in Italian from the Vatican Press, and she hopes to have an English version out soon.