Friends of Agape PRC


Our Story

A Traffic Jam

Believe it or not, Agape began in a Round Rock traffic jam! On the morning of April 22, 2002, I was driving my kids to school to the tune of a kids’ praise CD. I pulled out onto 620 and the traffic was at a standstill. I needed a traffic report…so out came the CD and on went AM radio.

Instead of a traffic report, I found a broadcast of Focus on the Family. I forgot about the traffic as I listened to the last few minutes of the program. It was an interview with pregnancy center directors and pro-life leaders from across the nation. After dropping my kids off at school, I pulled out of the parking lot and began channel surfing again. This time I came to another station that was beginning the same program!

By the time I returned home, I had listened to the entire program and was certain this was a Divine appointment. I wondered if God wanted me or my church to volunteer with a local pregnancy center. So, I went straight to the phone and called Linda Cotton, the WMU (Woman’s Missionary Union) director at my church. She agreed that this would be a wonderful place for our ladies to volunteer. As we talked, I thumbed through the Yellow Pages only to find that there was nothing listed under “abortion alternatives” in Round Rock…. except a place called “The Heidi Group”.

Well, we had never heard of The Heidi Group, so, the next call was to my pastor, Dr. Gary Brinkley. He wasn’t familiar with them either but encouraged me to call them and check them out.  So, I called and talked to the sweet receptionist. After relaying the above story, she assured me that someone would call back shortly.

Someone did return my call an hour later. In a heavy, Texas drawl, that someone said, “This is Carol Everett. Did you just hear me on the radio?” God had my complete attention!

Steering Team Assignment

One week later, we met with Carol and learned that she had been an abortion clinic owner in Dallas. But after she became a Christian, she founded The Heidi Group and began pro-life advocacy work. 

Even though the Heidi Group was not a pregnancy center, we were eager to volunteer and offered to help her in any way. Carol had another idea. She looked us straight in the eye and challenged us to open a pregnancy center in Round Rock! We had absolutely no experience with non-profit or pregnancy center work. And we had no intention of opening a center! So, we politely told Carol, “We’ll pray about it”!

A few weeks later, Carol spoke at our “Women on Mission” meeting. Again, she challenged us to open a center. We ended that meeting with a call to prayer the next evening. Thus began several weeks of prayer meetings to discern God’s will. In late July, we polled the prayer group and unanimously agreed that we were to begin a pregnancy center. We also agreed that it was to be Gospel-focused. 

Several women from that group at First Baptist Church formed a steering team. Then we began the 18-month process to open Agape. We had nothing but “The Steps to Open a Pregnancy Center” from Carol. We had no money. But we had many people praying!

At one of our first Steering Team meetings, Brother Gary donated our first nickel! He rallied the church behind us, and soon First Baptist became Agape’s first monthly donor.

Building Search bEGINS

The ensuing months were filled with countless hours of hard work and blessings too numerous to count.  Soon we received the support of many local churches, businesses, and individuals. They took a risk to support a vision…and helped turn the vision into a reality. 

We began to search for a building to lease. A local real estate agent took us to 104 E. Main St. in downtown Round Rock during a major rainstorm. It was so bad we put trash bags over our clothes to keep them from getting wet! Inside the building wasn’t much better. We stood in what is now the lobby and stared at puddles of water on the ground. The roof was leaking. We gathered in a circle (even the real estate agent joined us) and prayed. We knew this old Round Rock Insurance office with the red facade was the place for us.

Once we decided to move forward with the lease, Buddy Crossley joined the Steering Team. We needed his help to oversee every aspect of the process from lease to move-in. Buddy became our much-loved Super Hero, (and went on to receive the “Golden Hammer Award” for his work on the project and  later served as Board President.

The building needed extensive and expensive renovation. Stacey Flournoy of Living Proof Construction volunteered to be the general contractor. He then enlisted Christian contractors to donate their time, materials, and labor for the framing, AC and electrical work, drywall, insulation, trim, and paint. Bruce Rader followed on their heels and built beautiful shelves to house our layette items and maternity clothes. During the entire process, Buddy worked tirelessly and made daily runs to Home Depot. Other volunteers worked around the clock helping with painting and other tasks.

Move-in day arrived, and each room was filled to the brim with furniture, rugs, pictures, office supplies, cleaners, completely stocked refrigerator, and on and on and on! Even the layette shelves overflowed with brand new items for brand new babies. As with the finish-out of the building, everything had been donated!

On February 11, 2004, Agape opened its doors, still as a DBA of First Baptist Church of Round Rock. A year later, we had 501(c)3 status, and many local churches supporting monthly.


Within three years, we had outgrown our space. So, we signed a mortgage for our building, and decided to add a two-story addition to the back of our building. The addition, completed in 2010, was completely funded by donations and in-kind gifts. In 2012 we had a capital campaign to pay off the mortgage on the original building. Since then, Agape has been debt-free.

In 2016, Agape became medical and hired our first nurse. Then in 2017, we added our mobile unit, Zoe, the Greek word for life. The mobile allowed us to take our life-affirming services to underserved areas.

Before 2018, approximately 95% of our clients were planning to parent. We knew that we needed to the abortion-determined women in our community, and that the best way to reach them was online. But it is expensive. As we were considering the cost, a couple walked into my office one day out of the blue. I had never met them before, but they asked me what I needed. So, I shared about using Google Ads to reach the women we were missing. The husband pulled a checkbook out of his pocket and wrote us a $10,000 check to get started! Soon after, another couple came forward to donate $25,000 for the same thing.   This was the beginning of investing thousands of dollars in digital marketing campaigns and Google Ads. And it worked!

Immediately, our demographics changed, and we began to see many more abortion-determined women. In 2019, we hired a pro-life marketing firm to manage these campaigns to increase our reach. Again, it worked!

Then came 2020. During the early days of the pandemic, our numbers decreased as we pivoted to virtual services for a time. By the end of 2020, things were getting back to normal…and then came 2021 and the passage of the Texas Heartbeat Bill. This new law brought unexpected opportunities to serve women in crisis. Women were coming to Agape much earlier in their pregnancies, more desperate, and uncertain about the new law.

Along with centers across the state, we worked to develop new “best practices” to meet these needs. We had to educate women on the law, offer earlier ultrasounds, and calm their fears. 

In 2022, we realized that Roe v. Wade might be overturned, so we began to plan…and plan…and plan…in advance.

We anticipated that we would be busier than ever. So, we began to increase staffing to include seven nurses and four staff client advocates. This added to our existing team of staff and volunteers. 

We knew there were threats to pregnancy centers across the nation, and that we needed to take serious security measures. So, we invested thousands of dollars to ensure the safety of our clients, volunteers, and staff. 

We knew there was a need for Agape to expand medical services, so we added testing for sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

We knew that chemical abortions would continue to increase. And since many women begin taking abortion pills and regret it, we needed to be able to help them. So, we became approved to offer the Abortion Pill Reversal process.

We knew that fathers are highly influential in their partner’s pregnancy decision, and vital for the future well-being of their child. So, we hired our first Men’s Services Director. He, along with new male volunteer “coaches” trained to begin serving men daily at Agape. 

And we knew that spiritual warfare would increase. We began to seek increased, intentional prayer support.


So, on June 24, 2022, that glorious day when Roe v. Wade was overturned, Agape was ready!

Agape is now entering its 20th year of ministry, and we are doing so in a new environment…a post-Roe Texas. It is a time unlike any we have ever seen. We are busier and seeing more difficult cases than ever in our past. The more appointments we open, the more fill. Now, almost half of our clients are either considering abortion or have made the decision to get an abortion.

And we were correct about the spiritual warfare. It is intense as we are on the front lines of life and death every single day.

So much at Agape has changed in the past few years, but our mission has NEVER wavered! We are seeing more babies’ lives saved and more women and men coming to Christ than EVER before! The darkness may be increasing in this world, but our light is shining brighter!

To date, we have since ministered to over 17,500 young women, men, and families. Return visits for classes and other services number over 71,000. Best of all, more than 1,000 have trusted Christ as their Lord and Savior, and hundreds of babies have been saved!

God has moved mightily over the past two decades at Agape. We have seen His miracles, provision, and lives saved time and time again. He has used His people who have prayed and given of their time and talents over the years. We are truly grateful for those who have, and continue, to stand with Agape…for LIFE!

We look forward to the next 20 years.  And as Brother Gary always said, “the best is yet to come!”

Jo Markham

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