STILLWATER, Oklahoma — Former Planned Parenthood clinic director Abby Johnson has a message for the abortion giant's ex-president, Cecile Richards: "I genuinely care about you" and "I pray for you, fervently, every single day."
In May, The Christian Post visited the set of the upcoming motion picture "Unplanned," which chronicles how Johnson departed her job in the abortion industry following conversations with 40 Days for Life intercessors who were praying outside her clinic. She spent eight years working at Planned Parenthood in Bryan, Texas, and the film is based on Johnson's book of the same name. The movie is scheduled to be released in the spring of next year.
In a CP interview outside a coffee shop near the film set alongside actress Ashley Bratcher, who portrays Johnson in "Unplanned," the former Planned Parenthood director opened up about how she sees her past and how she regards the former head honcho of her previous employer.
"I think I would just want to embrace her," Johnson said, when asked if she could say anything what would she like to tell Richards, who at the time had just resigned as president of Planned Parenthood.
Johnson joked that she wishes Richards would respond to her text messages; she has known her for many years.
"But I'd just say, I so desperately want you to find the joy that I have found. And I would tell her: 'I pray for you, fervently, every single day.'"
Richards is involved with the industry she is because she earnestly believes she is doing the best thing for women, Johnson said.
"I know that her heart is there, that she believes she is being compassionate. Because she's hearing it from all these other women saying things like Planned Parenthood 'saved my life,' and 'if I wouldn't have had this abortion where would I be today?'" she added, noting how such a unified chorus of praise fuels confusion.
When Johnson worked at Planned Parenthood, she never once heard a story of a woman who regretted having an abortion because even the women who came back in for repeat procedures would tell them how thankful they were. She knew nothing of any contingency of women who were speaking out about how their abortions harmed them.
"So I would just want [Richards] to know, my desperate prayer for her, is that I want her to be lavished in God's mercy and to know Him," she continued.
"And not just to know just the idea of Him, like I think she does now, but to really know Him and to be in relationship with Him."
Johnson doesn't think Richards realizes the joy that exists on the other side of that proverbial fence, and it's scary to walk away, but she would be with her: "I will be with you every step of the way."
"I will be there to hold your hand. I will be there to talk to you until 2 o' clock in the morning. I will be there. Because I do genuinely care about you."
Johnson is now an articulate pro-life advocate who leads And Then There Were None, a nonprofit organization that assists other Planned Parenthood employees and abortion clinic staffers who've decided to leave the world of abortion as she once did.
"Unplanned" is written and directed by Chuck Konzelman and Cary Solomon, the same men who co-wrote the movie "God's Not Dead." It's one of several movies coming out over the next few months where abortion issues are central to the plot.
"Gosnell," which will be in theaters Oct. 12, recounts the grisly operations of and the criminal prosecution of Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell.