By Dave Andrusko
I’m sure most of you can empathize with the herculean task of going through 30 + years of pro-life materials, an assignment I gave to myself to accomplish over the last few weeks. The good news is that I have run across gem after gem.
One I chanced upon last Friday was an issue of the quarterly “LifeWatch,” the pro-life newsletter complied by the formidable Rev. Paul Stallsworth. Rev. Stallsworth is a pastor in the United Methodist Church who has appeared at many National Right to Life Conventions and who has contributed to NRL News Today.
Among the many meaty morsels in that edition, Paul included a link to a book written by Dr. James V. Heidinger, II, titled, “About Abortion: 10 Things a New Generation of Christians Should Know.” I knew of Dr. Heidinger’s work in other contexts. He is an excellent writer who fills each page with insights worth pondering
I would like to share a few of the ideas he had for informing a new generation of Christians about abortion.
For starters he reminds us of a truth that elates pro-lifers and deflates pro-abortionists: “Many in this new generation, according to the Gallup Poll numbers, seem to have pro-life instincts.”
But they might well be “unaware that the arguments and rationales used in the ‘70s and ‘80s in support of unrestricted abortion were (and remain today) substantially weak, not carefully reasoned, and sometimes based on misleading, even dishonest claims.”
Knowing that –and also that there is boatload of spot-on criticisms of Roe v. Wade offered up by a host of ethicists, legal scholars, and Christian theologians–“may help inform today’s generation and give substantive support to its pro-life instincts.”
Let me conclude with this timeless insight. This new generation, like the public as a whole (including many of these young people’s elders), “have not considered carefully the teaching of the church fathers of the first five centuries; we have not listened carefully to the pattern of sounding teaching of our greatest theologians and ethicists of the last century.”
There exists is a great storehouse of careful, theologically-informed reasoning why we ought to, why we must, protect the weakest among us.