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Immigrant couple chooses life with pro-life help

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Mohammad, his wife, Tari, and their three children had a good life in Afghanistan. Since 2002, Mohammad (last name withheld to protect their identities) worked for the U.S. Army there, but felt he needed to move his family to a safer place — “safe from the threat of kidnapping, from the threat of suicide bombing,” he said. So in July, the five of them left their family, friends and homeland to move to Virginia.


A month later, the couple learned they were pregnant. Because of her earlier pregnancies, Tari knew she would suffer from hyperemesis gravidarum — extreme nausea. The couple has since made four or five trips to the emergency room, said Mohammad.

“She was crying, saying we are new here, with no job, no family,” said Mohammad. In desperation, they began to look for a facility that would perform an abortion.

Instead, they found Angela Clark, a parishioner of Sacred Heart Church in Manassas who runs A Best Choice Mobile Ultrasound and Pregnancy Resource Center. During the counseling session, Clark began to explain that their unborn child was a human person, worthy of protection. “I’m a father,” he said. “I know all these things, but I'm newly immigrated. I have no job, no home. How can we keep this baby?”

So Clark reached out to her pro-life contacts in the area, including John Murray, the pro-life coordinator of St. Mary of Sorrows Church in Fairfax. Through emails and social media posts explaining the couple’s situation, donations began to flow.

Project Gabriel, a diocesan pregnancy outreach program, offered to pay the family’s rent for a month. Tepeyac OB/GYN in Fairfax is providing medical care. Pro-lifers who saw Clark’s message donated $6,814 to support the family.

Now, Tari is able to rest while Mohammad looks after the family, without worrying about money. “I’m taking care of my other children, getting them ready for school, making lunch and dinner for the whole family,” he said. “I have never done this before but I am trying to do my best.” Tari still feels homesick, he said. But medicine has helped her feel a little less sick.  

Their children, ages 10, 8 and 5, are excited about having a new sibling. “My daughter wants a girl and my son wants a boy,” Mohammad said with a laugh. Their baby is due in late March or early April.

“We’re very excited for a newborn. Everything comes from God, and it was through the help of God that we kept this baby, the fourth child in our family,” said Mohammad, a Muslim.

He’s grateful to Clark and everyone who donated to help the family.

“I have heard that when someone wants to kill a child, the angels come and save (the child),” he wrote Clark in an email.

“That's you guys. You are doing the job of God's angels. I needed someone to get my hand and pick me out of the most difficult stage of my life. Thank you very much.”

© Arlington Catholic Herald 2017