Members of Blessed Hope Baptist Church, located at 9251 N. State Road 59, Jasonville, gathered New Year's Day, to place 1,000 white wooden crosses on the front lawn of the church.
According to Senior Pastor Jerry Ross, each cross represents 60,000 babies who have been aborted since the Supreme Court ruling in the Roe Vs. Wade case on Jan. 22, 1973.
"Our church will turn 40-years-old in May," Ross said. "Sadly, we share our anniversary year with the Roe Vs. Wade decision that legalized abortion in America. Our church felt that we should bring awareness to this Biblical issue by placing the crosses in front of our church. We are praying that abortion ends in 2013."
According to the National Right to Life Committee's projected numbers as of this year, more than 60 million abortions have taken place in the United States of America in the past 40 years.
"The Bible not only teaches us that life begins at conception, but that God's hands are active in the formation of every baby in the womb," Ross said.
The church will leave the crosses up through the month of January. The church is also setting aside Jan. 22, as a day of prayer and fasting. The church will be open for 24 hours, from midnight to midnight, in order for community members to come for a time of prayer.
Visitors are welcome to walk along the crosses outside or come inside the church to spend time praying about the issue. Some church members are also choosing to fast that day.
"Our prayer is that this 40-year national shame would end in America," Ross said. "We joined our president and fellow Americans in grieving over the 20 innocent lives that were killed in Newtown, Conn., last month. We pray that they will join us in grieving over the nearly 60 million innocent lives that have been killed in America since Roe Vs. Wade."
Ross said his church normally reminds community members to pray about ending abortion, but with the 40-year anniversary, he and the church members wanted to draw more attention to the issue.
"We wanted to bring heightened awareness in the community," Ross told The Brazil Times. "(Abortion) is something that is done privately. It's easy for it to go on every day and the average American doesn't think about it. But we want people to be aware and to pray about ending abortion."