For Immediate Release Contact: Jerry Horn, 540-220-0095
January 21, 2003
Roe vs. Wade must go: A Primer on
Following is a primer on theological principles underlying religious support
for the right to life of every human person, including the unborn. It was issued
today by the
National Pro-life Religious Council. As
the 30th memorial of Roe v. Wade approaches, some religious
organizations such as the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice
have obscured the differences between
reverence for freedom and acquiescence to violence. Member groups of the NPRC,
namely, Alpha Omega Life (Orthodox), CEC For Life (International Communion of
the Charismatic Episcopal Church), Conservative Congregational Christian
Conference, Lifewatch (Taskforce of United Methodists on Abortion and
Sexuality), Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod, Lutherans for Life International,
National Clergy Council / Faith and Action, National Organization of
Episcopalians for Life (NOEL)*, National Right to Life Committee, Inc.,
Presbyterians Pro-Life, Priests for Life, and United Church of Christ Friends
for Life, desire to safeguard the fundamental Christian assertion of the right
To correct the misinformation that is being circulated, the National Pro-life
Religious Council offers this primer on Biblical and theological principles
underlying religious support for the right to life.
God's dominion. Scripture teaches that all life belongs to God alone, who is
Sovereign over the affairs of human beings. No human being, therefore, can own
or dispose of any other human being, nor be the arbiter of when the other is
born or dies. "None of us lives as his own master and none of us dies as his own
master…both in life and death, we are the Lord's" (Romans 14:7-8)
Sanctity of Life. Scripture teaches that human beings are made in the image
of God. As such, any notions that denigrate this profound truth are in direct
contradiction to God’s own understanding of humanity. No more profound
expression of God’s embrace of human existence can be found than in the
Incarnation: Jesus Christ taking to himself humanity, from conception, to birth
to maturity, to death.
Self-sacrifice. It is in the offering of Himself on the cross that the Son of
God reveals the meaning of love: I sacrifice myself for the good of the other
person. Abortion sacrifices the other for the good of oneself, and is
hence the opposite of Christian love.
Equality. Jesus Christ broke through the false barriers that separated Jews
from Samaritans, lepers from the healthy, children from adults, wanted from
unwanted. He taught the equal dignity of all. The barrier that divides born from
unborn is likewise offensive to His teaching.
Justice. God saves the helpless, who cannot save themselves. This God of
justice expects His people to do likewise, rescuing the orphan and the widow,
and intervening to prevent bloodshed.
Hope. Abortion is essentially an act of despair. Jesus Christ, the Alpha and
Omega, from whom we can expect every good, opens the door to hope, which in turn
enables us, despite our fears, to welcome new life into the world.
The National Pro-life Religious Council stands with all those who grieve over
the destructive confusion that characterizes the language of pro-choice
advocates and is particularly saddened when such obfuscation is offered under
the banner of religious faith.
Rev. Fr. Frank Pavone is President of the National Pro-life Religious
Council; Rev. Kirk van der Swaagh is Vice-President. Both may be reached for
comment at the number listed above.
*NOEL was renamed Anglicans for Life in March 2007