Rachel’s Vineyard began in America in the 1980s and has spread worldwide as a centre for post-abortion healing. Weekend retreats offer you an opportunity to examine your abortion experience, identify the ways that the loss has impacted you in the past and present, and helps to acknowledge any unresolved feelings you may be struggling with.
The emotional numbness and secrecy that often surrounds an abortion experience and the conflicting emotions during and after may remain unresolved. These feelings can later surface and may be symptoms of post-abortion trauma. Theresa Karminski Burke, Ph.D. started one of the first therapeutic support groups for post-aborted women in 1986 after founding The Center for Post Abortion Healing.
In 1994, Rachel's Vineyard: A Psychological and Spiritual Journey for Post Abortion Healing was first published. It was a unique support group model for counsellors, offering a very concrete, emotional experience for women who were grieving the loss of their aborted children. In 1995, Theresa adapted and expanded the curriculum into a format for weekend retreats. Soon individuals seeking healing began to travel from other states to experience this very effective healing process.
Without a budget, office or advertising, Rachel's Vineyard became a grassroots national outreach.  By word of mouth only, the retreats began to spread across the country because of the retreat's dramatic effectiveness, from 18 retreats in 1999 and growing to 35 retreats in 2000.  In 2003, Rachel's Vineyard became a ministry of Priests for Life and its board was structured accordingly. Currently, Rachel's Vineyard has grown to over 1000 retreats annually, held in 48 states and 57 countries, with many new sites in development.
Theresa Karminski Burke, Ph.D., has lectured and trained professionals nationally on the subject of Post Abortion Healing.  Rachel's Vineyard Ministries offers an annual Leadership Training Conference specifically designed for those who currently use the Rachel's Vineyard Program.  She also trains retreat teams in the method and process.