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IRD Calls for Mainline Church Officials to Disavow Pro-Abortion Rights Stance

"Church officials, when they echo the 'choice' rhetoric of Planned Parenthood and NARAL, betray their vocation and misleads their community about Christian teachings." -- Mark Tooley, Director of UMAction


Contact: Loralei Coyle, The Institute on Religion and Democracy, 202-682-4131, 202-905-6852 cell, lcoyle@ird-renew.org


WASHINGTON, Jan. 19 /Christian Newswire/ -- Monday, January 22 marks the 34th year of unrestricted legalized abortion in the United States. Abortion will long be a contentious issue in America. However, for mainline church officials to step away from the traditions and teachings of the church to support unrestricted abortion on demand is appalling. Mainline denominations have plunged in membership for 40 years. The refusal of mainline church officials to affirm historic Christian teachings about the sacredness of all human life bares a large part of the blame.


The IRD's UM Action Director Mark Tooley released this statement,


"Mainline church agencies belong to the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, which has opposed all proposed restrictions on abortion, including partial-birth abortion, and even parental notification. How appalling that mainline church officials have resultantly ended up sounding more like Planned Parenthood or the National Organization of Women than like the spiritual heirs of the apostles.


"Church leaders have betrayed their responsibility to their membership and to the universal church by serving as mere echoes of the secular culture rather than as agents of Gospel transformation on issues relating to human life.


"Many of the children, teens and adults who come to the nation's capital in the dead of winter to march for human life belong to these church denominations whose leaders have sadly compromised with the secular culture. Lifewatch, the pro-life caucus within United Methodism, will host a worship service in the United Methodist Building on Capitol Hill, where, sadly, United Methodist and other mainline church agencies routinely defend unrestricted abortion. The courageous witness of Lifewatch and of other mainline church members who affirm human life represents the unbroken voice of Christianity across the millennia in defense of all vulnerable human life."


The Institute on Religion and Democracy, founded in 1981, is an ecumenical alliance of U.S. Christians working to reform their churches' social witness, in accord with biblical and historic Christian teachings, thereby contributing to the renewal of democratic society at home and abroad.