Thursday 11th February 2016

Home » Featured Today » Currently Reading:

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “Profile: Religious Coalition For Reproductive Choice”

March 11, 2014 Featured Today No Comments

By BRIAN CLOWES

(Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of chapter 8 of The Facts of Life, “Christian Teachings on Abortion,” e-mail him at bclowes@hli.org.)

+    +    +

The mission of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (RCRC) is nearly identical to its member organization Catholics for [a Free] Choice, but it is carried out on a wider scale.
RCRC’s mission has three elements.
The first component is to create confusion among the public as to what Christians actually believe about abortion. RCRC intends to cause doubt in people’s minds by claiming that the Church did not always oppose baby-killing. So, when the Church does publicly oppose abortion, it appears to be inconsistent and punitive.
Second, RCRC tries to convince people that abortion is essential to religious freedom. It claims that if access to abortion is constrained in even the most trivial manner, religious freedom is also restricted. RCRC alleges that a particular religious view regarding when life begins should not be forced upon the nation: “[We] oppose efforts to enact into secular law one particular religious doctrine on abortion or the beginning of personhood.”
Of course, it never occurs to RCRC that the Supreme Court has already imposed a religious viewpoint on abortion upon the nation — the Unitarian religious view that life begins at birth.
Finally, RCRC strives to persuade people that they can be Christians of any denomination and still be free to kill their unborn children with a clear conscience. In fact, RCRC insists that people cannot be good Christians unless they support abortion! This is in line with its insistence that every Catholic hospital must perform abortions and that every insurance plan must pay for abortions, even if the hospital or insurance plan is operated by a church that believes abortion is morally repugnant.
Katherine Hancock Ragsdale, a former RCRC president, described the group’s mission in more general terms when she claimed: “We must give up the idea that we can cling to some moral certainty.”
Except, of course, the moral certainties that RCRC pushes — that all abortions are moral, that homosexual behavior is perfectly acceptable, and that divorce, pornography, and fornication are nothing more than ethical lifestyle choices. RCRC leaders insist that “God doesn’t care about our sexuality,” despite literally hundreds of Bible quotations to the contrary. The RCRC philosophy is so far removed from Christianity that it represents more of a quasi-Buddhist pseudo-religion. Whatever dogma RCRC clings to, it certainly isn’t Christianity.

Silly Arguments

Any thinking person who reads RCRC’s glossy literature must — humorously — wonder if its writers have taken full advantage of the recent legalization of marijuana by some states, because some of its arguments can only be described as inane and entirely unfocused.
Frequent RCRC contributor John Swomley has criticized the “Christian right’s conspicuous silence about the tobacco industry….The tobacco issue clearly tears to shreds the white sheet of morality and other claims by the Christian Coalition, of defending ‘life’.”
The “white sheet” Swomley is referring to is undoubtedly the Seamless Garment, but his version is apparently fabricated from 100 percent spandex for him to be able to stretch it so far. And this is not the only moral principle that Swomley deforms beyond recognition. He also gives the same treatment to “double effect,” which allows that, in very rare cases (such as ectopic pregnancy), surgery may be performed to save the mother’s life, even though the procedure will inevitably (and indirectly) kill the unborn child.
Swomley asks: “Isn’t it just as reasonable to assert that the intention of most women is the separation of the fetus from the woman, not the killing of the fetus, though its death may be foreseen?”
Swomley obviously is not at all familiar with the principle of double effect, which requires that the act producing two effects must itself be a morally good or neutral act to begin with. The only purpose of an abortion is to kill the unborn child, and such an action can never be good or even morally neutral, regardless of the circumstances or intentions surrounding it.

What “Majority”?

The Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice boasts: “The power of our collective voice for reproductive justice is in fact magnified by the unique, diverse views of our various member organizations.”
Let’s take a quick look at how much horsepower this “collective voice” really has.
RCRC claims to represent the “pro-choice” majority of Christians and Jews, and proudly lists an impressive 27 religious affiliates on its literature. However, this number includes only two actual mainline church denominations — the United Church of Christ and the Episcopal Church.
Significantly, four of the five Protestant churches that were RCRC members in the 1980s have dropped their membership. These are the American Baptist Churches, USA; the Disciples of Christ (Christian Church), to be replaced with something called “Disciples for Choice”; the Presbyterian Church, replaced by “Presbyterians Affirming Reproductive Options” (PARO); and the United Methodist Church, replaced by “United Methodist Women.”
These last three member groups are small bands of radical feminists who bestow upon themselves grandiose and official-sounding names and promptly embrace the entire anti-life agenda in the name of their church. The parent church wisely refuses to become entangled with a group as obviously disreputable as RCRC, but the women’s subgroup deliberately attempts to convey the false impression that its entire church supports the entire radical pro-abortion agenda.
RCRC also lists numerous extremely small splinter groups and renegade organizations, whose combined membership represents about one thousandth of the total churchgoing population in this country. These theological toothpicks include the American Jewish Committee, the American Jewish Congress, the Anti-Defamation League, the Lutheran Women’s Caucus, and the Women’s League for Conservative Judaism. The only denominations currently represented on the RCRC rolls are the United Church of Christ, the Episcopal Church, and the Metropolitan Community Church.
These three denominations now possess a total membership of only 2.87 million, and they are dying quickly, declining by 37 percent since 1980. This means that RCRC represents only about 1.9 percent of all churchgoing Americans.
In fact, the combined memberships of all “pro-choice” churches in the USA are collapsing rapidly; from 23.1 million in 1980 to a current 15.9 million, a 34 percent decrease. Meanwhile, the total membership of churches with an official pro-life stand has increased from 105.3 million in 1980 to 133.9 million currently, an increase of 38 percent.
One of RCRC’s primary arguments is that abortion must remain legal because there is “no consensus of opinion on abortion.”
Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary defines “consensus” as “judgment arrived at by most of those concerned,” or as “general agreement.”
As of 2014, membership in pro-life churches is 8.4 times greater than that of “pro-choice” churches in the United States.
This means that there is indeed a “consensus” regarding abortion — a consensus against it, a consensus that is growing larger with each passing year.
The fact that RCRC represents less than two percent of the religious voice in this country regarding abortion certainly qualifies it as a “small and vocal minority”!

Foundation Lapdog

As with all of the other larger pro-abortion groups, the vast majority of RCRC’s funding comes from foundations, which have given RCRC more than $40 million since 1999.
The Buffett Foundation has donated $12.2 million to RCRC, a total of about one-third of its budget over the past decade. RCRC’s other major funders are the Ford Foundation, George Soros’ Open Society Institute (OSI), the Huber Foundation, and the William & Flora Hewlett Foundation. Like CFFC, RCRC is becoming less and less a religious voice and more and more a parrot of rich foundations.
Some of these foundations appear to suffer from an unhealthy fixation on suppressing the African-American population in the United States.
Some of their grant justifications include:
1) “To expand ‘Keeping It Real,’ a sex education program that serves youth through African-American churches” [Otto Bremer Foundation, 2006 and 2007]; “General support to protect and expand reproductive choice for all people in Missouri, with an emphasis on the African-American community” [Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation, 2008]; “Program focuses on developing the leadership of women and girls in addressing teen pregnancy, STDs, and HIV/AIDS in black churches” [Chahara Foundation, 2004], and, in a dreadfully successful attempt to channel Margaret Sanger, “Grant for black church initiatives for teen birth control” [Engelberg Foundation, 2004].
RCRC claims that “the mission of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice is to be the leading religious voice for reproductive justice in the country.” In light of its many past failures and its absurdly illogical arguments, perhaps the group should select a different mission.
At least we can agree with one thing RCRC has posted on its rather sparse web site. Pro-abortion Bishop Desmond Tutu has said: “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.”
Pro-lifers should take this admonition to heart.

+    +    +

Next article: “Why Do So Many ‘Pro-Choice’ Groups Support Forced Abortion?”

Share Button

Comment on this Article:

COMPLETE 3 PART Interview With Cardinal Burke . . . Insights On The State Of The Church In The Aftermath Of The Ordinary Synod On The Family

Cburke3

By DON FIER Part 1 (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, recently traveled from Rome to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wis., a magnificent place of worship which he founded and dedicated. (His Eminence graciously granted an extensive interview to The Wanderer during which he…Continue Reading

‘Justice has been served’ – Bishop Conley on why he invited Bishop Finn to Lincoln

Lincoln, Neb., Feb 5, 2016 / 11:29 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Bishop James D. Conley of Lincoln defended his decision to allow Bishop Robert Finn, former bishop of Kansas City, Mo., to take a position as chaplain of a community of…Continue Reading

Marco Rubio, David Daleiden; Chi-Town priest ‘outs’ himself

The young investigative journalist and pro-life activist David Daleiden – whom GOP presidential hopeful Marco Rubio recently defended – will present himself before Judge Brock Thomas in Houston on February 4. Peter Breen, special counsel for the Thomas More Society,…Continue Reading

Catholic Italy mobilises as conservatives mount last stand against same-sex unions

It has been 2,000 years since Romans gathered at the Circus Maximus to watch chariots roar around the racetrack, but a new battle was brought to the ancient site on Saturday . Clutching banners reading “We defend our children” and…Continue Reading

New documents prove Planned Parenthood profited from selling aborted body parts: pro-life group

HOUSTON, January 29, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – A pro-life organization has released documents that may show Planned Parenthood illegally profited from the sale of aborted babies’ body parts, furthering a Texas state investigation and possibly triggering a new grand jury in…Continue Reading

TRUMP’S SPOKESWOMAN MUST APOLOGIZE

Bill Donohue comments on a remark made by Donald Trump’s national spokeswoman, Katrina Pierson: On December 18, 2011, Katrina Pierson sent the following tweet: “Just saw a commercial from Catholic Church stating that Catholic Church

Faithful Catholic Education Offers Understanding of True Freedom, Says Archbishop Lucas

Catholic education prepares students to live a life of faith, but also offers students a true understanding of God-given freedom in an environment in which they can grow in virtue, said Archbishop George Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, Neb.,…Continue Reading

NFL star who refused to meet Obama over abortion gives powerful talk at March for Life

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 22, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – All the speakers at the 2016 March for Life play a pivotal role – but only one was regularly called an MVP. Matt Birk, the former center for the Minnesota Vikings and the…Continue Reading

2016 March for Life heats up blizzard-stricken Washington (PHOTOS)

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 22, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – The blizzard snows are falling on the nation’s capital, layering the city in a blanket of frost that could be two to three feet thick by tomorrow morning. But for awhile this afternoon,…Continue Reading

SPECIAL REPORT: Planned Parenthood Offices Located Near Half of Catholic Colleges, Alarming Pro-Life Leaders

Half of all four-year, residential Catholic colleges in the U.S. are within five miles of Planned Parenthood facilities, a study by The Cardinal Newman Society has found. Catholic pro-life leaders warn that the close proximity of these Planned Parenthood centers…Continue Reading

81 percent of Americans support dramatically stronger pro-life reforms: Poll

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 19, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – An overwhelmingly majority – including two-thirds of self-described “pro-choice” Americans – would support greatly strengthening laws that protect the unborn, according to a new poll released this morning. In all, 81 percent of…Continue Reading

New initiative aims to make Catholic men ‘watchmen’

For years, Chad Crow has attended the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis’ annual conference for men. And the father of four, who is a parishioner at Transfiguration in Oakdale, said that he and other men who attend the conference…Continue Reading

Vatican Parishes Are Now Welcoming Refugees

Diocese of Rome Responds to Holy Father’s September Invitation for Parishes to Host a Family of Refugees January 15, 2016  By ZENIT Staff Responding to Pope Francis’ appeal this September, Vatican parishes have begun welcoming refugee families. In his Sept.…Continue Reading

Newsmax

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our new website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for over 145 years in our weekly print edition. Now we are introducing the online daily version of our print journal.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to su
bscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 145 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.
 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

A Powerful Weapon: 15 Quotes on the Holy Rosary

We live in evil times. I hardly need elaborate the multitude of crises that fill the globe. Sadly, many are being swept away by this flood of evil and are succumbing to an overwhelming anxiety and discouragement. But no matter how tempting it is, we must not shrink back. We must pray and fast with a living faith and a firm confidence—and there is no better way to…Continue Reading

12 Ways to Become a Committed Catholic Man

There is a Catholic “man-crisis.” Large numbers of men who were baptized Catholic have left the Church and the majority of those who remain are “Casual Catholic Men”, men who do not know the Catholic faith and don’t practice it. This large-scale failure of Catholic men to commit themselves to Jesus Christ and His Church has contributed to the accelerating…Continue Reading

Today . . .

Pope’s Angelus reflection: Trust in the word of the Lord

(Vatican Radio) Do not be afraid but trust in the word of the Lord: that was Pope Francis message to the crowds gathered in a windswept St Peter’s Square on Sunday for the recitation of the Angelus prayer. The Pope based his reflections on the Gospel reading which tells the story of Jesus calling his first disciples by Lake Galilee. After fishing all night without a catch, they are washing their nets when Jesus gets…Continue Reading

Christie and Bush attack Cruz, Rubio for being too pro-life

Fr. Mark Hodges WASHINGTON, D.C., February 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Pro-lifers across the nation are scratching their heads and saying, “With friends like Chris Christie and Jeb Bush, who needs enemies?” Their frustration comes from both Christie and Bush attacking other presidential candidates as unelectable because they are pro-life without compromise. This morning on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” program, New Jersey’s Governor Chris Christie attacked Florida’s Senator Marco Rubio for not favoring aborting children conceived in…Continue Reading

INTERVIEW: Padre Pio In Rome: Saints as Living Icons of Divine Mercy

Stefano Campanella, Director of Padre Pio TV and Author of Publications on the Friar of Pietrelcina, Reflects on Significance of the Historic Transfer •February 4, 2016•Osvaldo Rinaldi• Stefano Campanella, born in 1964 in Putignano, Italy, lives with his family at San Giovanni Rotondo. He has been a parliamentary journalist and Vatican expert. Currently, he serves as director of Padre Pio TV and heads the press office of the religious province of Sant’Angelo and Padre Pio…Continue Reading

Pope: The Faith is the greatest inheritance we can leave

(Vatican Radio) The most beautiful inheritance we can leave to others is the Faith: that was Pope Francis’ message during Holy Mass on Thursday morning at the Casa Santa Marta. In his homily, he invited us to not fear death, because the course of life continues. Thinking about death illuminates life The day’s first reading tells the story of the death of King David. “In every life there is an ending,” the Pope said. This…Continue Reading

The Pope: consecrated life must be close to the people

pope301

Vatican City, 2 February 2016 (VIS) – The following are extensive extracts of the Holy Father’s extemporaneous address to the participants in the Jubilee of Consecrated Life, which took place yesterday in the Paul VI Hall. This afternoon in St. Peter’s Basilica he will celebrate the Mass to conclude the Year of Consecrated Life. “I have prepared a text for this occasion regarding the themes of consecrated life and three of its most important pillars:…Continue Reading

A Potpourri . . . To Be Is To Give, And Other Matters

By GEORGE A. KENDALL The most fundamental question for all of is: What are we for? What is life about? What is selfhood about? Are we here to aggrandize ourselves with things like power, wealth, brilliance? Or are we here to give ourselves? We think that by working to add to the self, we increase…Continue Reading

Blessed José Sanchez Del Rio… Miraculous Cure Of A Baby Leads To His Sainthood

MEXICO CITY (CNA/EWTN News) — The miraculous cure of a baby with brain damage through the intercession of Mexican martyr Blessed José Luis Sanchez del Rio has been approved by the Vatican, completing the final step for the teen’s path to sainthood. Pope Francis signed the decree January 21, verifying the inexplicable recovery of a…Continue Reading

Begging For Mercy

By DONALD DeMARCO When we do not hear another person’s words correctly we say, “I beg your pardon.” A moderator appears on stage and apologizes for a momentary inconvenience by saying to the audience, “I beg your indulgence.” These words flow easily from our lips, usually without much reflection. They have become automatic responses, polite…Continue Reading

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “How Dissenters Attack The ‘Holiness’ Of The Church”

By BRIAN CLOWES Conclusion (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of the book Call to Action or Call to Apostasy, consisting of a detailed description of the current forms of dissent and how to fight them, e-mail him at bclowes@hli.org.)…Continue Reading

Neither Left Nor Right, But Catholic . . . The New Literalism And Fundamentalism

By STEPHEN M. KRASON (Editor’s Note: Stephen M. Krason’s Neither Left nor Right, but Catholic column appears monthly [sometimes bimonthly]. He is professor of political science and legal studies and associate director of the Veritas Center for Ethics in Public Life at Franciscan University of Steubenville. He is also co-founder and president of the Society…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

The Year Of Consecrated Life Ends . . . Answering God’s Call And Proclaiming His Mercy

By MOST REV. LEO O’REILLY KILMORE, Ireland (ZENIT) — Bishop Leo O’Reilly of Kilmore gave this homily on Sunday, January 31 to mark the closing of the Year of Consecrated Life. The year ended February 2, the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord, and the World Day of Consecrated Life. Bishop O’Reilly told consecrated persons that they have been…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World . . . Jesus Gave Witness In The Public Square

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK “Seems to me that Jesus wants us to love our neighbors and leave the judging up to Him.” This is a typical response of many people when they encounter the Church and her members witnessing to their faith by speaking out on moral teachings in the public square. Christian witness in a visible, public way…Continue Reading

An Apologetics Course . . . Hostility Against The Church

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 40 Fourth objection: Why do so many people have hostility to the Catholic Church? Reply: Why was Jesus the object of hostility from so many people? In simple terms, the Pharisees may have refused Him as they could not accept His doctrine and felt threatened by His power to perform miracles. The Sadducees may…Continue Reading

Life Everlasting — The Particular Judgment

By DON FIER In concluding our examination of the teaching of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) on article 11 of the Creed, we saw that in order “to rise with Christ, we must die with Christ” (CCC, n. 1005). Death, with all the mystery which surrounds this common fate of all mankind, is the gateway to everlasting life.…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Q. I know that in this Jubilee Year of Mercy, we are supposed to practice more fervently the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy. Most of these are fairly easy to understand, but I wonder about the one that says we are to “admonish the sinner.” How can one do that without judging another person, which we’re not supposed to…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Miguel Febres Cordero Munoz

By CAROLE BRESLIN There have been many saints born in Europe who came to the Americas to convert the natives and work among immigrants. These included St. Isaac Jogues, St. Frances Cabrini, and St. Damien of Molokai, to name a few. There were few saints who were born in the Americas and then went to Europe and died there far…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… Blessed Boleslava Maria Lament

By CAROLE BRESLIN The Catholic Church observes the Church Unity Octave from January 18 through January 25. For each day of the octave, we pray for a different form of unity. For example, on January 18, the intention is for the return of separated Eastern Christians to communion with the Holy See. Another day the intention is for the restoration…Continue Reading