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UMC Agencies / UMC Boards–Oxymorons?

by Michael L. Gonzalez

October 10, 2000


Q:  When is a door not a door?
A:  When it's ajar!

Q:  When is an agency or board of the UMC no longer really a part of the UMC?
A:  When it espouses beliefs completely divergent from the UMC!

Let's suppose that a secular, non-religious group, is formed for the purpose of protecting equal rights of the citizens of the United States of America regardless of religious beliefs.  Now, the purpose of this group would be to make sure that no one religion's beliefs were forced upon a person of a different religious belief.

For example, suppose that religion "X" believes that everyone must remain silent on Tuesday morning, and that no talking is permitted, and if a person were to even listen to another person talking, it is a punishable offense.  Well, if this religion "X" had a majority in the U.S. population, then we might end up with laws that forbid any telemarketers from making sales calls on Tuesday morning.  You might think that people of this religion "X" would simply not answer the phone, but let's say they make excuses, such as they wouldn't know if it was an emergency except by listening to their answering machine screening the calls, or that they consider the actual ringing of the phone as someone speaking to them . . . whatever.

My point is, that in the U.S. it would certainly be within reason to form a "watchdog group" that made sure that one religion's beliefs were not imposed upon another's.

For the record, let me assure you that we know that such a watchdog group would never spring from a Christian group, as a Christian group would never have as an objective to try to keep citizens from being exposed to Christian beliefs, after all, Christians hold dear to the Great Commission which mandates that every Christian preach the Gospel loud and clear to everyone.  Thus, to a Christian American, respecting the religious rights of others is valid, but efforts to restrict preaching the Gospel would never come from a Christian group.

You may ask, where am I going with this discussion?  Well, today was the first day that I read material directly from the website of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (RCRC).

Now, being an open-minded person that I am (well at least I can act like one), I'd like to take this RCRC at face value and accept them for what they claim to be:  An organization interested in women's issues of reproductive choice and protection from laws that would harm women, or restrict their free practice of their religious and/or moral beliefs.  As best I can tell, this is what the organization wants to portray to the public.

Now, if the above statement is the true objective of this organization, then you would see RCRC working toward greater opportunities for adult women to choose physicians, to choose means of education on prenatal care, to choose birthing methods, to choose involvement in pregnancy by family and friends, to choose methods of birth control, to choose means of fertility treatments, to choose paternal legal assistance with respect to the father, and on and on, and then at the bottom of the list, you'd find a woman's right to choose to have an abortion.  Why would I expect abortion to be at the bottom of the list of an organization all about women's issues of reproductive choice?  Obviously, because abortion is really NOT about reproduction, it's about negating reproduction, so it's like a "side issue" rather than an issue at the heart of the matter.

OK, as you've guessed, I've set up this RCRC in such a way to demonstrate the utter dishonesty in their entire approach to their purpose.

Read their mission statement: [my comments are in brackets]

"We are pro-choice because of our faith"
"Pro-faith, pro-family, pro-choice"

Since 1973, the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice [ah, but for the first 20 years of their existence, this wasn't their name--they used to have a name that wasn't so palatable, as you'll read further down] has served as the voice of pro-choice people of faith in the United States. As the only national interfaith coalition for choice [gee, I wonder why?], we have a unique role in representing the mainstream views of people of faith [It's a shame that they make up an imaginary "mainstream"] and countering anti-choice religiously-based arguments. Our rational, healing perspective looks beyond the bitter abortion debate to address pressing challenges such as unintended pregnancies, the spread of HIV/AIDS, and adequate health care and economic opportunities for women and families.  [Oh really?  Try to find issues dealing with the last sentence on their website.]

Read more objectives of RCRC:
The Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice works to ensure reproductive choice through the moral power of religious communities. The Coalition seeks to give clear voice to the reproductive issues of people of color, those living in the poverty, and other underserved populations.  [This is pure baloney, as they show no evidence of this politically correct objective.]

Comprised of national Christian, Jewish and other religious organizations, the Religious Coalition provides opportunities for religious people to examine and articulate their own pro-choice positions. We assist clergy in educating their congregations, communities, and elected officials about the theological and ethical dimensions of reproductive choice.

Reproductive choice when it comes down to a woman and her unborn child can mean many things:  It can mean the choice of how to have the baby, where to have the baby, and for problem pregnancies such as rape and incest and women who will be unable to care properly for their baby there's adoption services, and in the U.S. there's also abortion services to kill your unwanted baby--it's the mother's choice.

However, this organization provides ZERO choice to pregnant women.  This organization stands for only one thing:  ABORTION.   There is not one single other "choice" on this website anywhere.

Look at this position on the RU-486 abortion pill from the RCRC website:

FDA Approval of Mifepristone a Moral Victory; Restrictions, continuing threats must be monitored 
Statement of Reverend Carlton W. Veazey, President

The Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice stands unconditionally for a woman's right to choose according to her faith, conscience and personal circumstances and without government interference, as a principle of religious freedom as well as reproductive autonomy. The Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) long-overdue approval of mifepristone for early medical abortion (September 28, 2000) offers American women another option in their continuing struggle to make personal decisions about abortion according to their conscience. 

Approval of mifepristone is a victory for women as moral decision-makers and for supporters of women as moral agents but it does not change the necessity for vigilance against anti-choice tactics and harassment. We are hopeful that mifepristone will transform the struggle over legal abortion, by making the procedure more accessible and private and making it much harder for anti-choice extremists to identify women who are having the procedure and doctors who are providing it. However, the moral issues about abortion-which are of special concern to RCRC--remain largely unchanged; the religious right attacks on mifepristone after its approval are no different than their attacks on a woman's right to choose and in some cases have been even more virulent. Religious pro-choice people must continue to affirm religious support for a woman's right to choose according to her beliefs, faith, conscience, and personal circumstances, and without government interference.

The approval came with some restrictions but not the severe restrictions that were feared. Nevertheless, the restrictions may affect access. This is troubling because one of mifepristone's greatest benefits may be improved access. Women who now must travel long distances will be able to go to their internist or family doctor for mifepristone. Eventually, abortion will be mainstreamed into general medical care. We are particularly concerned about the effect of the requirement for three separate visits on the most underserved women--those who are low-income, women of color, and youth. We will monitor the use of mifepristone to determine if the restrictions have a negative effect on use.

How could the RCRC position be any more blatantly in favor of increasing the frequency of abortion?  Look at the above highlighted text:  improved access; abortion to be mainstreamed! This is horrific!  How could I be any more emphatic about the definitive objective of this organization:  To kill children!

So here are the choices that the RCRC is trying to protect for women from those bad guys (devout Christians):   In the privacy of her own home, a woman can choose to 1) use the RU-486 to kill her child, or 2) . . . well, I guess there's no other choice is there?!

There is simply no way that any Christian organization could support this RCRC given this clear statement above.

Yet, guess which mainline protestant denomination supports the RCRC?  Of course, who else, the United Methodist Church via it's boards and agencies.

Why in the world is this organization so bent on killing unborn babies?  Only one answer:  They're evil!

Have the leaders of the UMC gone blind?!  Don't they see that from the Christian point of view that this organization is the epitome of evil?!

Read that mushy language in the Social Principles on abortion, ya, I know it speaks on both sides of the issue to such an extreme that it ends up saying next to nothing.  However, it is at least clear what it doesn't say:  It doesn't call for abortion to be mainstream.

Just in case you would like proof that every UMC member is supporting the RCRC through apportionment dollars, you can see on the RCRC website that the UMC is an "affiliated denomination," and while you're at it, look at all the other organizations that the RCRC is associated with.  It looks like a veritable who's who of abortionists, including Planned Parenthood.  For more information on Planned Parenthood, see this previous article, and for the latest method that abortionists use to kill children, read this article, and for a means to make abortions less painful to the unborn child, read this article.

Here's a rundown of articles from the United Methodist News Service to demonstrate beyond a shadow of a doubt that every member of the UMC is supporting the RCRC by simply being a member.

UMNS September 1997

The Rev. Carlton W. Veazey, pastor of Fellowship Baptist Church, Washington, has been named executive director of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, an organization that includes the United Methodist Board of Church and Society and Board of Global Ministries Women's Division among more than 30 ecumenical groups.

Civil rights leader advocates human rights in reproductive choice 

Joretta Purdue Feb. 26, 1997 

WASHINGTON (UMNS) -- The Rev. James M. Lawson, a leader in the 1950s and 1960s civil rights movement and minister of Holman United Methodist Church in Los Angeles since 1974, lifted the banner of reproductive choice here Feb. 25 [1997]. 

"The nation has not yet decided that women are endowed with certain unalienable rights -- endowed by their creator -- that among these are life, liberty and pursuit of happiness," he said.

[We certainly wouldn't want anybody to not be happy, so if killing a baby makes them happy, well then, let's rejoice as they do it!]

Lawson, keynote speaker at a convocation of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice held in conjunction with the Pro-Choice Public Education Project, accused the country of continuing to oppress women. 

Would men put up with a lack of choice if they bore the children? Lawson answered his own question with a resounding "no!" and said that while God gave the responsibilities for reproducing life to women, some men can not deal with that. 

"God expects of us the pursuit of justice," Lawson declared. He made clear that his understanding of justice includes reproductive choice. 

He said ordinary people striving to make the country a better place are the source of freedom in a land made up of colonies that were founded with established churches that jailed, expelled or executed people who differed. 

[This guy is certainly a patriot, isn't he?]

Lawson himself was jailed more than once. A pacifist and a three-year missionary in India, he is credited with organizing the desegregation of Nashville, Tenn., through civil disobedience and teaching the passive technique to Freedom Riders. 

In his speech here, Lawson railed against current proponents of a religious dogma "that demands that all the rest of us accept the dogma whether we can stomach it or not." 

He said "an assault" on American minds and hearts, "funded by big money," has worked for 30 years "so that abortion is on the agenda rather than universal health care." 

So many of the people who would deny abortion are the same people who do not want to care for children who are living, he declared.

[This is simply a bald-faced lie--he should have to substantiate such hateful accusations]

"We should demand a public policy that ... provides a guaranteed living wage for every family in the nation," Lawson said. "Over half of the poor people in our society are people who work."

He urged a quality education for every child. Such an education, he said, would include teaching about health and human sexuality, calling it a good gift of God.

[I suppose that one of his preferred types of classes on human sexuality would be the one at Tufts University.]

"The best ethical decisions are made with full freedom," [said Rev. Ignacio Castuera, minister of the North Glendale [Calif.] United Methodist Church]. That freedom to make decisions is what he wants for all women, now and in the future, including his three daughters, he added. 

Castuera serves on the national clergy advisory board of Planned Parenthood.

The Religious Coalition president, the Rev. Katherine Hancock Ragsdale, an Episcopal priest, said people need to understand that reproductive health and choice are in jeopardy.

The majority of people in this country are pro-choice, she said. They are doing their voting on other issues, because they do not really understand that choice is at stake, she continued.

[lies, lies, lies]

"Where there is general apathy and cynicism about the political process, the zealots rule the day," Castuera said, adding "That's part of the reason we have the kind of Congress that we have." 

Between their press conference and the evening convocation Castuera and others rushed to the Senate Gallery in the Capitol to witness the vote on a bill releasing money for foreign family planning assistance. The money had been held up by anti-abortion legislators although funding abortions overseas has been prohibited by law for years. 

The bill passed the Senate by a roll call vote of 53-46. President Clinton had certified in January that withholding the money was increasing the demand for abortions. The bill passed the House of Representatives Feb. 13 with a vote of 220-209.

[I guess that members of the UMC can be proud that through their support of the RCRC, the U.S. government was convinced that more unborn children should be killed.]

World population more than doubled between 1950 and 1990 and is expected to continue growing.
[Well, the abortionists should take great pride in reducing the population of the United States by almost 40,000,000 people since 1973--yes, they killed them! The numbers from the holocaust tragedy pale in comparison to this figure.]

Speaking of the United Methodist News Service, which is funded by every member of the UMC through apportionments, below is the most blatant propoganda I've ever seen published by the UMC on the subject of abortion.  These statements are certainly misleading, and arguably, outright lies.  Tell me if this makes you proud to be a Christian in the UMC.

May 21, 1998
Joretta Purdue

WASHINGTON (UMNS) - Clergy members strongly favor reproductive choice, according to a new survey by a pro-choice interfaith group.

Responses from 420 clergy of many different denominations reflected a broad definition of reproductive choice - including sex education, access to reproductive health care and family planning services, access to safe and legal abortion, and availability of adoption services, said the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, a national pro-choice group of 42 mainline faith organizations.

In the survey, sent to 4,000 clergy of both conservative and liberal Christian and Jewish organizations, 92 percent of the respondents agreed that every woman should be free to decide when to have children according to her own conscience and religious beliefs.

"The Religious Right has misled the American public into believing religious people oppose abortion, reproductive choice and sex education," said the Rev. Carlton W. Veazey, a Baptist clergyman and executive director of the coalition.

Eighty percent of the clergy agreed with a statement saying, "I support a woman's right to access to a safe and legal abortion."

The percentage was higher than average among Jewish and United Methodist respondents, with 88 percent favoring a woman's right to a safe and legal abortion. The rate was lower than average among Presbyterians, with 68 percent indicating agreement.

Of the United Methodist surveys returned, 85 percent expressed the belief that people can benefit from congregational dialogue about sex and reproductive choice, and 72 percent say the denomination should do more in sexuality education.

Rabbi Bonnie Margulis, the coalition's director of clergy programs and a doctoral candidate, did the survey of member and non-member clergy. No statistical margin of error was given.

The faith groups surveyed included American Baptist, Baptist, Episcopalian, Jewish (Reform and Conservative), Pentecostal, Presbyterian, Southern Baptist, Unitarian Universalist, United Church of Christ and United Pentecostal.

So, who else supports the RCRC?  They're all listed on the RCRC website.  There is no question as to the purpose of this organization.  Look down the list of the RCRC supporters.  Here are just a very few:

Planned Parenthood

Alan Guttmacher Institute (read about its abortion-only purpose in another article)

Even if you don't know anything about these organizations, just look at their names:  Abortion Access Project, Abortion Clinics Online, Abortion Rights Activist, Feminist Majority Foundation, Feminist Women's Health Center, National Abortion Federation, National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League, National Coalition of Abortion Providers, National Organization for Women (NOW) . . . .

The list goes on and on, but not one single adoption clinic is listed.  So, where's the choice?!

Let's just face facts.  The RCRC is a complete misnomer.  It's NOT about religion (it's about politics), it's not about reproduction (it's about killing), it's not about choice (it's about abortion).  This organization should be called Non-Judeo/Christians for Abortion and Political Action.

By the way, did you know that the original name of this organization was Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights RCAR?  What's in a name?  Refer to an earlier article on the use of language in order to manipulate perception.

So you see, they changed their name to exchange the word abortion, for the word choice, but like they say, a leopard can't change his spots, and this organization, as demonstrated above, is 100% about abortion NOT choice!

From UMNS January 1998:

At the end of 1993, RCAR moved to larger quarters in Washington, leaving space it rented in the United Methodist Building. At the same time, the organization changed its name to Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. 

Sally Geis of Denver, a sociologist and a member of the Board of Church and Society in 1972, observed that the United Methodist Church reflects the mood of the culture. 

The partial-birth abortion issue is eroding support for choice, she said . . .

Click here to read a chronology of the highlights of the UMC and abortion.

Click here to see how the RCRC advocates readers to write letters to the editor during the election season.

Click here to see that the RCRC wants you to vote for Al Gore in order to make sure that future U.S. Supreme Court justices can pass a litmus test in favor of abortion.

Click here to see a primer in which the RCRC tells you how to invite friends to your home to convince them to support abortion (suggests refreshments, comfortable seating, etc.).

Who do you think is their target in all this propaganda?  Isn't it obvious?  It for all the "turn the other cheek" Christians who will also turn a blind eye to the evil of infanticide.  Yes, these abortionists want Christians to go out and demonstrate to the worldly people that Christians are all about abortion.  Can it be refuted that this RCRC is the work of Satan?  Help me out, where does it say in the Bible that Christians should succumb to the evils of the world and be tolerant of the dastardly deeds of the worldly?  It doesn't!  The Bible tells Christians to be a beacon unto the world to show the direction to righteousness, not to be the grease on a slippery slide to Hell!

Isn't this just about the last straw?  Isn't the support of the RCRC by the United Methodist Church and your apportionment dollars just about all you can take?  I challenge every reader (who has made it through this entire dissertation-- congratulations!) to get up and take a stand.  Find the E-mail and/or snail-mail address for your pastor and/or for your bishop from this list and write them right now and tell them that you're beside yourself with righteous anger and you're not going to take it anymore.  Write to them that the UMC endorsement of the RCRC must go!  A choice is one thing that some people may want to debate, but the outright advocacy of abortion for abortion sake just can't be tolerated in a Christian church!

 

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