Progressive faith leaders are speaking out in support of women’s access to all reproductive health care services, including abortion care. Today Just Texas, a project of the Texas Freedom Network, released an open letter signed by more than 170 clergy and faith leaders from across the state who oppose efforts to pass abortion bans in Texas towns. Read the press release here.
FAITH LEADERS FROM ACROSS TEXAS SIGN LETTER OPPOSING LOCAL ABORTION BANS
Release of Letter Comes as Big Spring City Council Considers Joining Handful of Texas Towns on Anti-Abortion Ordinances
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 11, 2019
More than 170 Texas clergy and other faith leaders have signed an open letter condemning efforts in a number of small towns around the state to pass unenforceable abortion bans and label as criminal organizations entities that help women access reproductive health care services that include abortion care.
“As leaders in our faith communities, we support the autonomy and well-being of all people,” reads the letter signed by Christian, Jewish and Unitarian faith leaders with Just Texas. “We trust Texans to exercise their right to make medical and moral decisions about their reproductive health care. We believe these decisions are best made freely, informed by their personal values and supported by their doctors, families and spiritual advisers.”
Just Texas is a movement of clergy and other people of faith who support reproductive rights for all. Just Texas clergy have gathered to bless abortion clinics and those who seek and provide care there in Fort Worth, Austin and the Rio Grande Valley. Today’s letter is available at tfn.org/justtx/letter.
The release of the letter comes after the Big Spring City Council tabled an ordinance declaring an abortion ban on Tuesday. The City Council agreed to consider it again in January. A half-dozen small Texas towns have passed similar measures since last summer. These ordinances have no legal effect and are unconstitutional under the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision. Even so, efforts to pass them send a dangerous message that the government may interfere with the right of women to make decisions about their own reproductive health care.
“Passing laws that ban abortion and shame and stigmatize women who seek one is wrong,” said Rev. Andries Coetzee of University Presbyterian Church in San Antonio. “There’s nothing criminal or immoral about supporting the right of women to make their own decisions about their own reproductive health care. God asks us to have compassion and love for our neighbor, including those deciding whether to become a parent.”
“Mine is one of countless faith traditions that call on us to respect individual conscience and honor the decisions women make about their personal reproductive health care, including whether or not to have an abortion,” said Rabbi Nancy Kasten, Chief Relationship Officer of Faith Commons, Dallas. “There is a rich diversity of religious belief regarding abortion and reproductive rights in the state of Texas. Politicians should start protecting the lived humanitarian needs of the born in this state, whatever their color, gender, or country of origin, and leave their constituents to make their own decisions about their reproductive health care.”
Just Texas is a movement of clergy and other faith leaders who support women’s access to all reproductive health care services, including abortion care.