Friday, January 20, 2012

Abortion and the Church in America - Amy Gerwing

Once again, I'm happy to welcome my dear friend, Amy Gerwing, to my blog.  Amy has written this very bold, very honest piece about the roll of the church as it pertains to abortion.  As the anniversary of Roe vs. Wade approaches this weekend, let us all consider what our roll, specifically as Christians,  in this battle should be.  Should we stand up and fight for the unborn?  Shall we be the voice to those who cannot speak for themselves?  Should we stand up for the hurting woman who feels she has no other options?  I believe the answer is a resounding "YES" and I believe that it should start with the church...please read Amy's article and consider these things as you do.  

With abortion, "The politics surrounding this issue may ebb and flow, but the call to the Christian never changes."

For life!

Abortion and the Church in America - Amy Gerwing

According to Merrian-Webster dictionary, the definition of the word Abdicate is  "to give up a position with no possibility of resuming it".  In a broader sense it means the evading of  responsibility, such as that of a parent.  Although used most commonly in the context of political power, I cannot think of a more appropriate word to describe the church’s lack of leadership to defend unborn life.   

For my entire adult life I have in varying degrees been part of a church body.  And although I’ve heard volumes of sermons regarding loving God and loving my neighbor, only a handful of times have I had the pleasure to hear a courageous pastor speak about loving my unborn neighbor.  Even less frequently have I been challenged from the pulpit to actively engage in the defense of the unborn.  Granted, these efforts are not exactly discouraged, but as far as being actively promoted from the pulpits of our churches, the silence has been deafening.  

Now that my husband and I are professionally involved in a life-affirming ministry, the chasm between the mainstream American church and the pro-life movement is even more apparent:
I’ve learned not to use the term “pro-life” when describing our ministry efforts to fellow Christians, as this term, having been so politicized by both the left and right, causes many to bristle in fear of engaging in a political argument.  We may support political means to save lives, but we most certainly don’t consider abortion a political issue.

I’ve concluded that church leaders, protective of their 503c status and lacking in understanding of their 1st amendment rights at the pulpit, have had their silence on the issue of life bought and sold by the government for the cheap price of tax exemption.  

I’ve discovered that the American church views abortion as one of its many “causes” to support, equating it to the local food bank and homeless shelter rather than acknowledging the reality that it is a silent holocaust which has killed 52 millions innocent lives.  

I’ve been challenged by church leaders to give and act missionally to spread the gospel “to the ends of the earth” but it’s rarely if ever mentioned that every year, just down the street from our churches, the gospel of Jesus Christ is being shared hundreds of thousands of times to men and women seeking counsel at a Pregnancy Resource Centers.  The harvest is plenty, and it’s right here in our very town.

I’ve sat through message upon message encouraging me to consider the orphan crisis in Africa without ever mentioning the 3500 unwanted children who are murdered every day here in America.

I’ve noticed that Christians can become very passionate about providing Christmas toys and shoes for impoverished children throughout the world  but fail to demonstrate that same passion when challenged to fight for the life of innocent children in their own backyard.

I’ve been asked why I don’t engage in helping real people.  What could be more “real” than a woman in a crisis pregnancy, who needs compassion, love and Jesus?  What could bring more joy than counseling this woman to choose life for her child and eternal life for herself through Jesus?  If ever there was a neglected mission post, it’s the 2000 plus pregnancy resource centers scattered throughout this country that, with the good news of Jesus Christ, break cycles of generational abuse and sin.  

Ultimately, I’ve learned that the church, as a whole, will rise to fight for justice when challenged by her leaders.  But as long as church leaders remain silent on the issue of life and deny this holocaust, which has brutally killed 52,000,000 babies since 1972, the church body will continue to shirk its responsibility to “deliver those who are being taken away to death, And those who are staggering to slaughter” Proverbs 24:11
And even as the church promotes countless other very legitimate causes, many in which I participate, I can’t help but ask:

  • How do we think that we can please God by serving our fellow man when we fail to protect the life of our unborn fellow man?
  • How does the church expect the word of God to powerfully go out to all the earth, when the blood of unwanted babies is being shed within a few miles of our church and we remain silent?
  • How can we expect our efforts to save children in foreign countries across the globe to be blessed by God when we remain silent to the savage murder of the children here in America?
There is a distinct disconnect between what the church says she believes and how she has responded to the abortion crisis in America.  
  • Do we really believe life is sacred at all stages and that it begins in the womb?  
  • Do we really believe we are called to love “the least of these”?  
  • Do we truly desire God’s justice to be poured out on those who have innocently suffered at the hands of others? 40 years, 52 million dead babies and thousands of hurting post-abortive women later, the answers to those questions appear to be a resounding “no”.
As we approach the 39th anniversary of the legalization of abortion, it’s time for the American church to do a gut check and ask herself if the death of 52 million lives, the eradication of 52 million destinies, the destruction of 52 million families is tolerable in a nation where 80% of the population claims to be Christian. And if it’s not tolerable, then what are we going to do about it?   

The politics surrounding this issue may ebb and flow, but the call to the Christian never changes.  Volunteer at a pregnancy resource center where you can do anything from counseling a scared pregnant women to helping in the filing department.  Organize an adopt-a-mom program through your church as you materially bless a mom, who despite the cultural pressure, has chosen life.  Mentor at a MOPS program designed to help single moms figure out this mothering thing.  You can pray, give, share, foster, adopt.  But to do nothing is to abdicate your God-given responsibility to “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed.” Proverbs 31:8

“You may choose to look the other way but you can never say again that you did not know.”
William Wilberforce


  1. Nicely written, although I would say "federalized legalization of abortion". When RvW is overturned, this will appropriately move back to a states issue and we'll then begin the local fight. Thank you for your message...time to share with friends. My love to you both!

  2. Thanks, Amy, for your passion and commitment. I'm spending the day in prayer for those I know traveling to DC for the March, for those making decisions today and this week that will affect the life of a child, for those children whose lives hang in the balance, and for those, like you, who put their words -- and their families and their reputations and their friendships and their comfort and convenience -- to action in fighting this battle. Love ya.

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