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By The Gus, Staff Writer

Staunton, Va. (AP)-- At the forefront of the radical right-to life movement, The Fathers of Lost Children Society (FOLCS) was organized in 1991 as a support group for men who feel guilt about all the children they could have had but failed to, either because of birth control, lack of a partner, or simply the overwhelmingly low egg to sperm ratio in humans. FOLCS maintains that the right to life extends even to gametes prior to conception. Since its humble beginnings in the kitchen of its founder, Ronald Morespon, FOLCS has since blossomed into a national organization with a multi-million dollar annual budget and paid lobbyists in Washington, DC. At its third annual meeting here in Staunton's Historic Shoney's Inn, emotions ran over as men spoke of their unrecoverable losses of progeny. Others stressed the need for action to prevent future losses of unconceived children not only to members of the organization, but to mankind generally.

Barry Limbofill gave the opening address Friday night with a speech entitled, "The Babies Whose Lives Aren't Allowed to Begin." He told the assembled of his experiences before joining FOLCS, "I used to be a regular guy with a regular wife. I knew there was something wrong with masturbation and it made me feel real guilty. But then by the grace of God I began to wonder what was the essential difference between masturbation and sex with my wife if she didn't conceive? I stopped using birth control and we had several wonderful healthy babies. But then I read somewhere that a healthy man issues forth millions of sperm with each ejaculation, and I knew I wasn't doing's God's will because I wasn't fathering millions of babies. I read about the Fathers+of+Lost+Children Society in a Christian Magazine, ordered the literature, and sent away for the siphon, vials and refrigeration unit, and haven't looked back. I still feel intense guilt about all those sperm I just let die back when I didn't know, but I sleep better at night now thanks to FOLCS." The crowd erupted into a standing ovation as a banner unfurled behind Limbofill with the slogan, "Sperm have souls too."

Later, Rev. Gerald Humphries spoke of the grave losses to God and Heaven represented by children who never even had a chance to be conceived, saying, "We feel justified outrage at the mother who terminates her pregnancy by abortion. But at least her child had a chance to be conceived and despite the horror of its death and mutilation, its little soul has been rescued by God and has won a permanent place beside Him. But when a sperm is lost, left to agonizingly desiccate, writhing and lashing its poor little tail as it yearns to be a child, its potential as a soul is lost, its seat in heaven lost. Upon the perpetrator of such a crime may the Lord God show His infinite mercy!"

On Saturday, various discussion groups formed to discuss the political goals of the "Right to Conception" movement. The keynote speaker in the "Storage of Potential Souls" forum, Willy Dewy, spoke of the need for federal funding for the expensive refrigeration facilities that the warehousing of excess sperm requires. He told the assembled, "Here we are, doing things that are neither comfortable nor particularly fun, all to save sperm from losing their potential as future taxpayers, doctors, lawyers, bricklayers, housewives, whatever. The least the government can do is provide us with a place to keep our sperm until such time as it can be converted into citizens." In another forum, concerning the extension of constitutional protections to both sperm and eggs, a number of speakers spoke of the need for a constitutional amendment that would redefine masturbation, male homosexuality, birth control and knowing sex with sterile women as murder. Further, some stressed that the failure of men to siphon and store "excess semen" might be made into a crime, perhaps on the order of manslaughter. Interviewed later that day, FOLCS charter member Steve Lüv expressed the view that, "If, as most of us believe, the loss of potential is the worst crime of abortion, then our feelings concerning abortion must extend to the death of eggs and sperm. I certainly feel that abortion is a capital crime, and to be consistent, I also feel the same about wanton ejaculation and menstruation."

On Sunday, the final day of the conference, there was a prayer vigil for the "trillions" of lost Christian souls. The Rev. Roger Randalstown lead the prayer which opened, "Oh Lord, forgive us for the loss of countless souls that would otherwise now be beside you in Heaven. We are as children ourselves, and it has taken us long to find the truth of our evil, selfish ways. But we are learning and we are trying. And we are reaching others throughout this land, averting as best we can this holocaust of murder waged against the innocent unconceived." Many in the audience were seen to be weeping, some loudly and uncontrollably.

Following the conference, there was a sale of discount refrigeration units, test tubes, petri dishes, electric siphons and other paraphernalia common to the "Right to Conception" movement. Many who had come to the conference had brought family vans and other large vehicles with which bulky refrigeration units could easily be transported. Harry Opertewn, owner of Opertewn's Appliance, reported that business was "better than ever" at the end of the conference. He also added, "..and I can see where these guys are coming from."

Barry Limbofill (9k)

Barry Limbofill discussing his views concerning the Right to Conception (AP Laserphoto).

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