Bishop Ruben Saenz Jr. issued the following letter today in response to the U.S. Supreme Court decision June 24, 2022, that overturned the landmark Roe-v-Wade decision from 1973.
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Dear Sisters and Brothers of the Great Plains Conference:
The June 24, 2022, Supreme Court decision overturning the historic Roe-v-Wade abortion-rights ruling is being met with mixed and strong emotions. Pro-life advocates cheered the ruling as a victory for the unborn, while pro-choice advocates opposed the ruling as a serious infringement on women’s right to choose and determine their own future.
As a result of the decision, abortion rights will now be determined by individual states unless Congress passes legislation that then is signed by the president. We can anticipate heightened debates over abortion for weeks and months to come in state legislatures across the United States. This topic obviously will continue to be passionately debated on social media.
As United Methodists, we turn to our social principles for our vision of righteousness to social, economic, and political issues. In ¶161k of the Book of Discipline, our General Conference has stated that we, as a church, do not support abortion as a means of birth control and that “Our belief in the sanctity of unborn human life makes us reluctant to approve abortion” in general. We as a church “mourn and are committed to promoting the diminishment of high abortion rates,” but we also recognize that situations in a woman’s life beyond her control may justify this procedure under the care of medical professionals.
Our Social Principles go on to say, “we are equally bound to respect the sacredness of the life and well-being of the mother and the unborn child.”
According to the U.S. Census, more than 10 million women have limited or no access to health care. And approximately 7 million children live in poverty, that’s one in every seven.
Bishop Thomas Bickerton, president of the Council of Bishops, provided a statement on behalf of the council. Read the statement.