Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Why The Mormon Church is Not Pro-Life

Is the Mormon Church really Pro-Life?

Like many positions in the Mormon church, it's stance on abortion has evolved. While it use to tell it's members that to have an abortion would be cause for immediate ex-communication, and that there would be no forgiveness for a woman who has had an abortion, it has made a formal statement as to the official stance on abortion. It states in part:

"Human life is a sacred gift from God. Elective abortion for personal or social convenience is contrary to the will and the commandments of God. Church members who submit to, perform, encourage, pay for, or arrange for such abortions may lose their membership in the Church"

At face value, it may seem that the church position is 100% pro life. However, if we keep reading, we find something else altogether:

"In today's society, abortion has become a common practice, defended by deceptive arguments. Latter-day prophets have denounced abortion, referring to the Lord's declaration, "Thou shalt not . . . kill, nor do anything like unto it" (D&C 59:6). Their counsel on the matter is clear: Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints must not submit to, perform, encourage, pay for, or arrange for an abortion. Church members who encourage an abortion in any way may be subject to Church discipline.

Church leaders have said that some exceptional circumstances may justify an abortion, such as when pregnancy is the result of incest or rape, when the life or health of the mother is judged by competent medical authority to be in serious jeopardy, or when the fetus is known by competent medical authority to have severe defects that will not allow the baby to survive beyond birth. But even these circumstances do not automatically justify an abortion. Those who face such circumstances should consider abortion only after consulting with their local Church leaders and receiving a confirmation through earnest prayer.

When a child is conceived out of wedlock, the best option is for the mother and father of the child to marry and work toward establishing an eternal family relationship. If a successful marriage is unlikely, they should place the child for adoption, preferably through LDS Family Services (see "Adoption").

—See True to the Faith (2004), 4–5" Click HERE for link to lds.org where the statement is from. Be sure to click the "More Information" tab to see the full statement.

Now, what I would like to do is follow the thought process and decide if the position that they have taken is at all contradictory, if it is truly pro life, and if the value of every unborn child is viewed as the same.
  
The Mormon church has stated that they believe elective abortion is murder. Why? Because life begins at conception. We know scientifically that at conception life absolutely does begin, and the unborn is developed from the inside out. What's more is we know the answer to the all important question, "what is the unborn"? The unborn is a human life, with a right to life, and is afforded the same rights any other human person is.

So we can say the Mormon church is against elective abortion, since it is the willful and purposeful, premeditated ending of an innocent human life. So far, so good. However, they then make the distinction themselves that in certain situations, such as rape, incest, or the health of the mother, abortion becomes permissible. Granted they do say that even that does not by default mean you should get an abortion, but all of a sudden, we have an exception to the rule, an abortion that becomes a permissible act, and is no longer subject to church discipline, or ex-communication.

For the sake of this article, I want to state two things clearly.

1) This article is NOT dealing with those situations in which the mother will likely die should the pregnancy continue.

2) I believe rape is an absolutely evil, grotesque, hideous, traumatic violation of the victim. The victim of rape should have protection, and support against such an atrocity and the rapist should be prosecuted the the fullest extent that our law allows for. I believe the rape victim is an innocent victim, who played no willful part in the rape, could not stop the action from occurring, and through no fault of her own, is now left to deal with what has happened, who deserves protection, who deserves help, and who deserves the love she needs to get through what has happened. And everything I just said, is no different at all for the second victim of a pregnancy through rape ... the unborn. The unborn is as much of an innocent victim, that could not stop the action, that was not a willing participant, who deserves protection, love, and help.
  
So what is the problem with the Mormon church statement?

The problem with the statement that the Mormon church has issued, and the stance it has taken, is it defeats itself. If elective abortion is wrong because the unborn is a human being, and abortion is murder, than the question is literally begging to be asked, "what makes the unborn rape victim less human, and have less of a right to life, and less valued in the Mormon church's eyes"?

Let us look at the obvious. The unborn child who has it's life ended via elective abortion is a human with rights according to the Mormon church. But the unborn who is a victim of rape, while there is no question the unborn is a human being, some how forfeits certain rights through it's conception, making it permissible to abort the unborn. The question of course is, why? If the main question in abortion is, what is the unborn, than what difference does the conception make? You cannot tell the difference of a baby that has been born out of love or out of rape, just by looking at it, can you? Absolutely not! The question about how the conception occurred becomes a moot point once the mother has become pregnant. At that point, we have an unborn human who is alive and has a right to life, inside of the womb. The unborn does not change or cease to be human just because it was conceived through rape. 

Now, I agree, the Mormon church does say that even in rape, or incest, it does not give a blank check to have an abortion, but the fact is this, the Mormon church has made the distinction, the clause, the differentiation itself! The Mormon church is the one who has said that the unborn victim of rape has a clause which permits it's killing, and therefor cannot be given an equal right to life as those who are conceived out of a loving relationship.

So what we have to say truly in the end is, the value of a unborn human life is greater when it is conceived out of love, versus that unborn human life which was conceived out of rape. I know this is harsh sounding, but if we take the emotion away from this, and look at it from a logical standpoint, we truly have no choice. The unborn is protected by threat of church discipline and ex-communication if the mother is considering an elective abortion. However, while they may disagree with the mother, she has the right to make a choice to abort the unborn baby conceived through rape, without this discipline or ex-communication occurring. Therefor, the unborn conceived through rape cannot be valued as highly as the unborn conceived through love, since the unborn conceived through rape is permissible to abort. Somehow according to the Mormon church, something changes that takes away it's certainty to a right to life. 

When I look at this sort of self contradictory position, it shows me even more reasons why this religion is man made. If this view is from God, than obviously God cannot value the unborn the same. Yet, we know that it is precisely those who are hurt, and broken, those who are the most messed up, those who are sick, those are the ones Christ came for!

The other question of course is, how does killing an unborn human fix the issue of the rape? The unborn is innocent, could not prevent what happened, deserves protection from harm, and the chance at a normal loving relationship with either the mother, or adopted parents. To assume that murdering the unborn through it being burned alive, dismembered, decapitated, or in some cases strangled by the abortionist, is somehow more humane to the child is beyond human comprehension. Killing the unborn to prevent it from having a harder life is hardly loving.

I realize that for some of you reading, maybe your own position is that abortion is wrong, but that the mother who has undergone such trauma should not be forced to have a child against her will. My question is, while I agree the trauma is great, the act was evil, why does the unborn who is a human, who has every bit as much of a right to life as a 5 year old not have the same care and protection?

It may help in fact, to ask yourself this question, and you can fill in the blank.

"It is morally correct, and permissible to willfully, purposefully, and premeditatedly murder an unborn human being when __________."

I would assert the answer is, it is not. If we are going to stand up for the unborn, than we need to stand up for ALL unborn. The unborn human conceived through rape has just as much of a right to life as that of the child who has been conceived out of a loving relationship. And to value the life of the unborn conceived in love more than the unborn who was conceived through rape is absolutely morally wrong.

I would highly encourage you to think through this issue. And I would ask you if you are a Mormon, can you truly support your church's statement on abortion? Or do you agree that ALL of the unborn are of value, and have an essential right to life? If you cannot trust your church on this, what else can you not trust them on?

I pray you will look at the logic of the argument given for the rights of the unborn, and I pray this opens your eyes. All of us have value and worth from our creator, even those who have been conceived through traumatic circumstances.

Romans 5:8, "But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."

In Him,
Jamie

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