For now, we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known. And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love. -1 Corinthians 13:12-13
Dear Friends in Christ,
United Methodists have been inquiring, What is the United Methodist stance on abortion in light of the recent supreme court ruling?
Beverly and I have good and faithful United Methodist friends whom we have known for 43 years. They have two adopted children. They tried to conceive a child, but medically could not, and so after several years of testing without being able to conceive, they adopted a boy and a girl. Their two children brought them joy. They were vehemently against abortion, recognizing that abortions may have meant that they would not be able to adopt their two wonderful children.
When their children were in their teenage years, much to their surprise, our friends conceived a child. They weren’t prepared to have another child at this this stage in their lives, but their beliefs and convictions would not allow them to have an abortion. They now have three wonderful children.
Four years later they conceived again. They had been using birth control, but they still conceived. They shared with Beverly and me that that their minds had changed and that in rare instances an abortion may be appropriate. Our friends prayerfully and painfully chose to have an abortion.
Good and faithful United Methodists have a range of beliefs and convictions about abortion. After all, we are a denomination in which former President George Bush and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are both good and faithful members.
United Methodist belief about abortion is found in our Book of Discipline, under our Social Principles teaching, paragraph 161k. Our Board of Church and Society summarizes the disciplinary passage in part, stating the following.