by Steven Ertelt
April 22, 2007
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — A pro-life group for members of the Methodist Church says it wants the eight million member United Methodist Church to end its affiliation with the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, a pro-abortion collection of religious groups.
Leaders of the Institute on Religion and Democracy said the time had come for the denomination to make its move away from the coalition after the RCRC issued a statement denouncing the Supreme Court’s decision upholding the national abortion ban.
The RCRC called the high court’s decision a "serious setback" for those who favor unlimited legalized abortion. The group opposed the passage of the ban in 2003.
Both the United Methodist Board of Church & Society and the United Methodist Women’s Division belong to the pro-abortion group.
Mark Tooley, the director of IRD’s UM Action Committee tells LifeNews.com that the RCRC’s position against the partial-birth abortion ban goes against the UM Book of Discipline.
The UM teaching tool states that, "We oppose the use of late-term abortion, known dilation and extraction (partial-birth abortion) and call for the end of this practice except when the physical life of the mother is in danger."
He told LifeNews.com that the United Methodist Church’s "position on partial birth abortion is clear" and pointed out that "an effort to add a vague ‘health’ exception to the position in the Social Principles was summarily rebuffed."
"The Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice exists solely to provide a faith-based veneer for aggressively promoting the availability of abortion. Its goals clearly contradict the UMC’s official positions," he explained.
"The United Methodist Church clearly opposes partial-birth abortion, so to remain affiliated with a coalition that aggressively supports it is inappropriate," Tooley concluded. "It is time for United Methodist agencies to sever all affiliation with the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice."
Problems of the affiliation with the RCRC are longstanding and the United Methodist Board of Church & Society came under criticism for participating in the large pro-abortion march that leading pro-abortion groups organized two years ago.
The Institute on Religion and Democracy, founded in 1981, is an ecumenical alliance of Christians working to reform their churches’ social witness, in accord with biblical and historic Christian teachings.
ACTION: Contact the UMC by going to https://www.umc.org and clicking on the Contact Us image at the bottom.