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There has been a dramatic expansion of the abortion regime in New York State. A law passed by the state legislature, the so-called Reproductive Health Act, allows for late-term abortions, even up to the moment of a child’s birth, limited only by vaguely-defined conditions. The bill allows nurses, midwives, and physician assistants to provide abortions, thereby making the tragic procedure much easier to obtain. This appalling law is expected to expand the number of abortions that take place in New York State. Governor Andrew Cuomo, a baptized Catholic, not only endorsed this bill, he celebrated its passage, directing One World Trade Center in downtown Manhattan to be lit in pink the day the bill passed. 

As Evangelicals and Catholics together, we wish to condemn this radical and extremist law in the strongest possible terms. We endorse the letter of the Catholic bishop of Albany, Edward Scharfenberger, who wrote,  

Although in your recent State of the State address you [Gov. Cuomo] cited your Catholic faith and said we should “stand with Pope Francis,” your advocacy of extreme abortion legislation is completely contrary to the teachings of our pope and our Church. Once truth is separated from fiction and people come to realize the impact of the bill, they will be shocked to their core. By that time, however, it may be too late to save the countless lives that will be lost or spare countless women lifelong regret.

As Christians, we affirm that every person, both born and in the womb, is made in the image and likeness of God. There is no justification whatsoever for killing those who are unwanted or deemed to be a burden. 

We recall the Evangelicals and Catholics Together statement of 2006, “That They May Have Life,” in which we said,

There are today legal protections for the disabled and elderly, but the unborn are totally dependent and totally vulnerable to the will of others. Once fully born, they are deemed to have rights that are protected in law, even though they are at that point no more human beings and no less dependent than they were hours, weeks, or months before. Yet before birth, and even in the very process of being born, they are now deemed not to have rights that society is obliged to respect. This perverse view of human rights is irrational and incoherent. Its result is the unjust killing of many millions of those who are indisputably human beings and the undoing of the very concept of human rights.

The recently passed New York law will result in the tragic and unnecessary deaths of countless persons. We wish to state clearly that no follower of Jesus Christ can be complicit in the abortion regime. No follower of Jesus Christ can stand on the side of death and destruction. We appeal to our fellow Christians, and to all Americans, to join with us in decrying this legislation and in upholding and honoring the dignity of every human being. For the Lord Jesus came that “they may have life and have it abundantly.” 

ENDORSED BY: 

Dr. Bruce Ashford
Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary

Dr. Mark Bauerlein
First Things

Dr. Hans Boersma
Regent College

Dr. Dale Coulter
School of Divinity
Regent University

Dr. Eduardo Echeverria
Graduate School of Theology
Sacred Heart Major Seminary

The Rev. Joel Elowsky
Concordia Seminary

Dr. Douglas Farrow
Faculty of Religious Studies
McGill University

Dr. Angela Franks

Dr. Timothy George
Beeson Divinity School
Samford University

Father Thomas Guarino
Department of Theology
Seton Hall University

Dr. James Keating
Department of Theology 
Providence College  

Rev. Peter Leithart

Dr. Matthew Levering
Mundelein Seminary

Bishop James Massa
Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn

Dr. Gerald McDermott
Beeson Divinity School

Mr. Peter Mommsen
Plough Publishing House

Dr. Jessica M. Murdoch
Department of Theology
Villanova University

Dr. Francesca Murphy
University of Notre Dame
Department of Theology

Dr. Charles Raith
Vice President of Mission and Ethics
Mercy Health Care

Dr. Russell Reno
First Things

Dr. Laura Smit
Calvin College

Mr. John Stonestreet
Colson Center

Mr. George Weigel
Ethics and Public Policy Center

Dr. Robert Wilken

Dr. John Woodbridge
Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

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