In May 1988, there was a general meeting for any “pro-lifers” interested in forming a pregnancy center. More than thirty people were in attendance, including Pastors from three area churches. Following the General meeting, a Steering Committee was formed. The Steering Committee chose the name, obtained a post office box, opened a bank account and began doing public speaking to promote awareness of the project.
In mid 1989, the committee elected their first Board of Directors and began the process of incorporating and filing for tax-exempt status. In early 1990, MPC was incorporated and received its 501(c3) non-profit tax exempt status from the IRS. From its inception, MPC has been affiliated with Care Net (formerly Christian Action Council) and now affiliates with Heartbeat International. MPC’s first Executive Director, Patty Eddington, served during this formative stage.
In the early fall of 1990, the Center opened its doors to the public at the location of 3025 McHenry Ave. Suite P. Linda Jost served as a catalyst for growth when she moved into the Executive Director position from the Steering Committee membership in the late fall of 1990. The total clients seen from June 1989 through November 1991 were 710. This number ballooned in 1992 to 1,032. In 1992, 15 of the women who intended to abort instead carried their child to term allowing counseling received at MPC.
In October 1992 , the Center had their first Annual Banquet featuring author and lecturer Lee Ezell. The night was a special evening when more than 300 in attendance heard of the trials and triumphs of the Center. The Center’s third Director, Cynthia Hujdic, began her tenure in December 1992 . Mrs. Hujdic brought with her a strong background in Christian ministry and strong organizational skills.
In 1993 , the Center held their first Annual Walk for Life Walk-a-thon. The hugely successful event raised more than $13,500 or 22% of the Center’s operating budget for the entire year! The continued demand for MPC services was evidenced in the steady climb of clients seen. In 1993, 1,162 clients had pregnancy tests, with 71 saved babies.
In 1994, numbers dipped slightly with 944 clients being seen. Of these, 385 heard the gospel message and/or had “spiritual” conversations with their counselor and 14 came to a saving knowledge of Christ! Some 106 women were undecided on their plan for their baby and none of them aborted. Of the 47 women who were strongly abortion minded, only 7 women proceeded with their plan and 40 carried their babies to term! In October 1994, MPC’s “Hope After Abortion,” post-abortion Bible study began to reach out to women with the message of hope, healing and forgiveness in Jesus.
Late in the summer of 1996, marked a tremendous milestone for MPC when it moved from it’s original location in suite #P to Suite #M. The new location, at 2,400 square feet, was twice the size and allowed the growing ministry the size it needed to house all of its outreaches under one roof. December of 1996 found a gathering of individuals meeting to discuss their mutual interest in developing a prevention arm of the outreach via an abstinence program.
In January of 1997, the Center was thrilled to host 80 Pastors from the Greater Modesto Ministerial Association for a time of Open House and dedication of the new facility. It was a special time. A separate public Open House was held on Sanctity of Life Sunday. In early 1997 MPC hosted abstinence training with more than 50 people attending from eight differenct pregnancy centers and three churches.
In March, 1997 the Center changed from a service of giving clients nearly whatever they ask for to an Incentive Program wherein they must earn their material assistance through either working through a workbook, watching educational videos or participating in a Bible Study. This change was very well received as it increased meetings between the counselor and the client, which meant deepening relationships. As a result, more women were open to the gospel and two men (the first ever) prayed to receive Christ while completing the Bible study with their partners.
In 1998 Lori Swanson assumed the position of community education director. Over the next ten years the program grew and developed to point where in 2007 over 14,000 students from both public and private high schools participated in presentations by MPC staff and volunteers
In 1998, the center demonstrated its commitment to high standards of financial integrity and accountability by instituting annual audits of its financial statements. This later facilitated MPC's acceptance as a member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA).
In January of 2000, MPC client services director Sharon Jensen resigned from her position to retire out of the area with her husband. A smooth transition was undertaken by her replacement Terry Callejo. Cynthia Hujdic resigned in 2002. Her administrative assistance, Leah Martinez, stepped in as interim director and was appointed as Executive Director in April, 2002.
In June of 2003 MPC officially opened as a Medical Clinic. Janet Spyksma/Pilchard volunteered to be the nurse manager and was also licensed to do ultrasounds. Ultrasound provided a new and very effective tool in helping mothers struggling with an abotion decision, to choose to give birth to their child.
In 2004. Delores Wolterstorff, a counselor and board member accepted the position of Executive Director of MPC. In 2005, MPC was able to be of service to almost 2500 women. Nine of them chose to make an adoption plan and 10 received the Lord as their Savior.
2006 brought new challenges with regard to our physical location. When our lease expired, the dental office next door leased 800 square feet MPC had been occupying. Fortunately, MPC was able to lease 1200 square feet of space on the other side of our existing facility, giving us a total of 2700 square feet. This allowed us to expand the space for the clothes closet ministry as well as provide additional office space.
In 2007 there were 676 new client cases with a total of 3,533 client visits. The medical clinic performed 299 ultrasounds. Nine clients made a first-time decision to receive Christ as their Savior. Three of our clients made adoption plans and we launched our first post-abortion Bible Study for men with three men participating.
MPC has a vision for reaching more people with the message of the value of human life and gospel of Jesus Christ. As the years change, so does the center as it evolves to reach more clients. Even though parts of the center change, our mission and calling never will.
God has done an amazing work in our community through the MPC. To Him be Glory and Praise and Honor. Amen !!