On April 1, 1990, Animas Crisis Pregnancy Center opened its doors to serve the women and families of San Juan County New Mexico. For a couple of years, a group of dedicated people gathered regularly for prayer and to discuss how to help women in crisis pregnancy. Some of the people who were a part of that group were Gary Pinion, Senior Pastor at then Exciting Tabernacle Baptist Church, Tammie Bacon, Jeannie Wyatt, Leslie Fitz, Bill Fortner, Karin Britt, Mark Frederick, Lisa Dible, Gordon Crane, Jr. They provided a strong foundation of prayer and financial support that continues to be built upon to this day.
Our founding Executive Director, Susan Schlauger, was such a tender hearted leader. Sue and her husband Bob were the Senior Pastors at Bethel Baptist Church in Aztec. The day she got the call from the Board of Directors inviting her to be the Executive Director completely surprised her. She couldn’t believe that God would trust her with such an important task. As an excellent teacher and mentor, she would spend many hours one on one with the staff and clients. She would often go to the jail just to minister to one pregnant woman. She loved the girls and gave them whatever she could so that they would know how much they were loved.
In January of 2004, the leadership team went through a transition and I became the Executive Director/President. I too was quite surprised that God would trust me with such an important ministry. I kept telling God, “Are you sure you have the right girl? Don’t you know, God, I don’t know what I’m doing!” I think He just sits back and smiles, waiting for us to get it, don’t you?
We added our “Earn While You Learn” Parenting Program later that same year. This program was (and still is) designed to take moms through an educational process that allowed them to gain greater understanding of parenting. Beginning lessons took them through the early stages of pregnancy, labor and delivery, then later lessons would teach them how to bathe, feed and care for baby.
In 2006, we had the awesome privilege of adding ultrasound to our services. The journey that brought ultrasound services to Grace Place is quite a miraculous one! Ultrasound was probably one of the most significant additions to our services to the women of our community. As a mom bonds with her baby by seeing him on ultrasound, she will most likely carry her baby to term.
In the fall of 2009, we moved from our Schofield location to our Butler location. Once again, the journey to the Butler facility was nothing short of miraculous. There was no way any one person could’ve planned all the steps that got us there. Only God! Our relationship with Dr. Jane Ruger and her husband, David, was a huge part of the journey. Because of their willingness to work with us, we are where we are today!
In 2014 our Fatherhood Initiative was started to better prepare dad’s for parenthood. A group of men and the staff at Grace Place came together for an amazing day of training.
Through the miraculous journey to ultrasound and then the Butler facility, I knew that God valued our moms and their babies more than I ever imagined! There are so many other miracles I could mention but time and space don’t allow it. I believe with all of my heart that God is completely for the success of Grace Place and all that we stand for! Our future plans are bright and promising as we continue to trust in God for the miracles that are yet to come.
Join With Us
Believing our vision and work is compelling, we invite you to learn more about Grace Place and to support us as we seek to restore hope to those facing unplanned pregnancies and ensure a future for their unborn. Go to Grace Place’s Web Site for more info or to donate!