UCC, Disciples Officials Call for Continued Planned Parenthood Funding

on September 29, 2015

A group of 44 Religious Left officials has released a statement calling for continued federal funding for Planned Parenthood, the largest provider of abortions in the United States.

The statement, which is signed by several denominational heads and liberal caucus groups within the oldline Protestant churches, coincides with the appearance of Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards on Capitol Hill today. Richards will be testifying before a U.S. House of Representatives committee as part of the on-going investigations into Planned Parenthood’s alleged harvesting and sale of organs from the bodies of aborted children.

The statement reads:

“As religious leaders, we urge Congress to resist efforts to deny federal funds to Planned Parenthood’s non-profit health centers, and other organizations that provide crucial reproductive health care. We ask for an end to politically motivated attacks on women’s sexual and reproductive health. We know that Planned Parenthood provides essential lifesaving services to almost three million people each year, including the most vulnerable families in the U.S. As religious leaders, we support family planning as a means of saving lives, improving reproductive and public health, enhancing sexuality, and encouraging intentional parenthood. We stand with people of faith who have supported Planned Parenthood for nearly one hundred years.”

The statement notably avoids direct mention of abortion and only indirectly refers to the Center for Medical Progress undercover videos that went viral this summer. The videos show Planned Parenthood officials negotiating the sale of organs and include graphic footage of children’s bodies harvested for tissue.

Among the more prominent signatories calling for continued federal funding of Planned Parenthood are United Church of Christ General Minister and President John C. Dorhauer, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) General Minister and President Sharon E. Watkins, Unitarian Universalist Association President Peter Morales and Metropolitan Community Churches Moderator Nancy Wilson.

Dissident Roman Catholic officials also signed the statement, including Catholics for Choice President Jon O’Brien, Call To Action Executive Director Jim FitzGerald and Sister Jeannine Gramick, National Coordinator of the National Coalition of American Nuns.

Officials from several oldine Protestant-affiliated institutions and caucuses are also represented, including Dr. Miguel A. De La Torre of United Methodist-affiliated Iliff School of Theology, Methodist Federation for Social Action Executive Director Chett Pritchett, Episcopal Women’s Caucus Co-Convener Pamela Kandt and More Light Presbyterians Executive Director Alex Patchin McNeill.

The full list of signatories can be viewed here.

In July, a group of clergy forming Planned Parenthood’s Clergy Advocacy Board praised the organization for “doing God’s work.” Read that story here. To learn more about the Clergy Advocacy Board click here.

Nationwide protests against the selling of aborted children for profit took place in August. Read IRD’s coverage here.

  1. Comment by Patrick98 on September 29, 2015 at 11:00 am

    I wonder what the average age of these signatories is? Contrast that with the youthful and joyful pro-life chanters who came out in Chicago recently to counter a pro-Planned Parenthood rally. (When I saw the video of these young people I laughed out loud for joy!)

  2. Comment by Swarrior on September 29, 2015 at 3:06 pm

    Libs gleefully cheering on the brutal murder of innocent human beings, why?

  3. Comment by Eternity Matters on September 30, 2015 at 9:10 am

    The “Christian” Left is made of of pro-abortion ghouls. Of course they support everything Planned Parenthood does, including hiding rapists and sex traffickers.

    The “Christian” Left is far more extreme in their pro-abortion agenda than the average pro-choice person. They insist that life begins at the first breath and insist that Jesus is fine with killing unwanted children until that point. I realize how ridiculous their views sound and how many people must think I’m making a straw-man argument. But that is just because their own words are so clear and extreme: “According to the bible, a fetus is not a living person with a soul until after drawing its first breath.” More here about how to respond, with full, in-context quotes from them: https://1eternitymatters.wordpress.com/2015/01/14/the-christian-left-is-far-more-extreme-than-the-average-pro-choice-person-2/

  4. Comment by Dan Hinze on September 30, 2015 at 1:46 pm

    It is worth noting that these so called “dissident Roman Catholic officials”, organizations and individuals have been excommunicated from the Church and are therefore no longer in union with the Church. They can call themselves catholic all they want but it would behoove you to not refer to them as “Roman Catholic officials” or even Catholic so as to not scandalize the faithful.

  5. Comment by Jeff Walton on September 30, 2015 at 2:08 pm

    How about “officials from dissident Roman Catholic groups”? You are certainly correct that they are not church officials, but they are people who identify as Catholic and seek to change the church’s policies.

  6. Comment by Dan Hinze on October 1, 2015 at 12:26 pm

    Yes, that sounds more appropriate.

  7. Comment by howard bell on September 30, 2015 at 3:15 pm

    Being “religious” is one thing, but believing in, trusting, and being obedient to God is something completely different.
    They are fooling only themselves and in reality they
    are much worse than militant atheists.
    It’s sad because well intentioned people listen to them.

  8. Comment by RobertMahoney on September 30, 2015 at 3:45 pm

    I think more people read about this from the link on The Stream than these churches have actual members.

    Why get up in the morning, take a bath and drive across town to listen to someone practically read from the New York Times editorial page. They can stay home and do that themselves.

    Imagine that, dying ecclesiastical bodies attaching itself to the state to keep afloat.

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