Continuing with my last post Abortion & Faith in the Church, I asked the question ‘Is the Church ProLife’? NO. There never was a question about Life in the distant past; abortion was never sanctioned even in ‘dire circumstances’ but in the last 38 or more years, it has become a quagmire of relevancy in the Church.
Finding a completely PROLIFE denomination is like trying to swim in a tar pit….you get close but not quite.
Catholic Church: “The Catholic Church has always condemned abortion as a grave evil.” Here’s the problem – the Catholic Church relies on writings other than the Bible to validate their stance on Life. While I am glad of their stance, the Catholic Church’s reasoning with ‘saints’ and other 1st and 2nd century writers instead of the infallible Word of God leaves me empty.
United Church of Christ: “The United Church of Christ has affirmed and re-affirmed since 1971 that access to safe and legal abortion is consistent with a woman’s right to follow the dictates of her own faith and beliefs in determining when and if she should have children…..The United Church of Christ is one of the founding faith groups of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, formed in 1973 as the Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights.”
Lutheran – Missouri Synod: “The sin of willfully aborting a child, except in those very rare situations where it may be necessary to save the life of the mother, is a sinful act, totally contrary to the will of God…..While the emotional arguments for abortion in these [rape & incest] situations might seem compelling, the fact of the matter is that it is wrong to take the life of one innocent victim (the unborn child), and further burden the life of the other victim of these horrible situations, the mother. It is indeed a strange logic that would have us kill an innocent unborn baby for the crime of his father.” Well said.
Judaism: “Reform Judaism understands the original position of the Talmud wherein is described the notion that an abortion should be performed only for the sake of the life of the mother, and even as late as the moment before the head of a baby emerges from the birth canal. However, Reform goes beyond this narrowly defined period and gives sanction to its members (and all others for that matter) to elect to terminate a pregnancy when confronting other circumstances: as a result of rape or incest; when through genetic testing, it is determined that the child to be born will have a disease that will cause death or severe disability, and the parents believe that the impending birth will be an impossible situation for them; and other circumstances.”
Church of God in Christ: While there is no actual position on abortion in the COGIC that I could find, I did come across this nugget – regarding the 2008 election, Rev. Dr. Clenard Childress writes, “Bishop Blake released the ‘fowls of the air’ himself by amending his insightful message with the age-old pro-abortion cliché: ‘I could never vote for a Republican because they don’t do anything for the child once they are here.’ And continued to say, ‘…it was coming from the presiding Bishop of the largest Pentecostal Denomination in America, with a membership of over 6 million people, Saved, Sanctified, and filled with the Holy Ghost, it was somewhat disturbing. How could the leader of such a prestigious and historic denomination, give such a jaded reason for support of the party which promotes Planned Parenthood, and advocates for the most destructive device in the African American Community since our inception: Abortion! Abortion is a modern day holocaust directly responsible for over 16 million African American deaths since 1973!”
Mormon: “Human life is a sacred gift from God. Elective abortion for personal or social convenience is contrary to the will and the commandments of God. Church members who submit to, perform, encourage, pay for, or arrange for such abortions may lose their membership in the Church…..Those who face such [rape & incest] circumstances should consider abortion only after consulting with their local Church leaders and receiving a confirmation through earnest prayer.”
Let me reiterate…this is not an exhaustive list. Be aware that there are satellite churches of these denominations that are more prolife and more prochoice then their denominational position papers articulate. It’s like trying to hit a moving target. The Church needs to put the issue of Life back in the pulpit.
It seems like there is no real position on the issue of Life being completely protected. You have to wonder, if the Church won’t protect Life, who will? Activists and advocates that care about just one single person whose tiny life is in the balance.