By now you’ve probably heard about the Women’s March on Washington and its organizers’ decision to remove a pro-life woman’s group from partnership status. While the march’s purpose claims to spotlight gender inequality and unjust societal structures, a loud message was sent: Pro-life women are not welcome.
The march’s pro-abortion identity shouldn’t come as a surprise. Planned Parenthood is a premier sponsor of the rally. Wedged between principles advocating gay rights and protesting police brutality, the march organizers state they “do not accept any federal, state or local rollbacks, cuts or restrictions on our ability to access quality reproductive services.”
This all means, there is no room for dissention on abortion. Either fall in line or stay home.
But what about women of faith? God has surely commissioned us to speak out against injustice, whether that be violence against women or the destruction of innocent lives in the womb. Do we march with a silent pro-life witness or stay home?
The split between theological lines seems to be the deciding factor. Theologically conservative Christian women will likely sit the Women’s March out, opting instead to rally behind next Friday’s March for Life, the largest annual pro-life rally in the world.
Liberal Christian women, on the other hand, are seemingly siding with the Women’s March even as organizers make it clear a pro-life ethic—no matter how many exemptions you advocate—is unwelcome among them.
Progressive Christian author Rachel Held Evans tweeted:
This clarify: I stand in complete solidarity with my sisters marching this week, even if I don’t affirm every word of the official platform.
— Rachel Held Evans (@rachelheldevans) January 18, 2017
Although the United Methodist Church’s women’s agency United Methodist Women (UMW) is not an official sponsor of the march, local UMW groups are not discouraged from attending.
First Methodist Church of Austin’s women’s group is taking part in a companion rally, the Women’s March on Austin and invites marchers to a special prayer service after the march.
Trinity United Methodist Church of Savannah, Georgia will host a story-telling event after the march concludes. Participants from the church and community will gather for a time of reflection and prayer for “the work that needs to be done to move forward in this movement.”
Several United Church of Christ congregations in the Washington, D.C. area are hosting breakfasts, prayer, and commissioning before the march.
Given the anti-life conditions of the Women’s March, Christian women should remember our whole faith message: There is a better way.
“It’s a girl!” are the most glorious three little words I heard this week while in an ultrasound examination room. I’ve never been more excited in my whole life. Already, welcoming a daughter into this world is one of the greatest sources of joy I’ve yet to know. My unborn baby girl already drives me to work harder, serve extra, and love greater. It’s also because of my precious baby girl that I refuse to participate in the Women’s March.
Every single time I hear my unborn daughter’s heartbeat I’m reminded of the unfathomable power of God the Creator, the tiny humanity He knit in my womb, and her precious worth even at such a teeny age.
If my faith, pro-life voice, and the value of my unborn baby girl are not affirmed and downright unwelcome at the Women’s March, then the decision for me is easy. I’m staying home this week. Because next week, I’ll march the streets of the nation’s Capital alongside other women and men on behalf of the worth and dignity of every life.
Sure, the Women’s March hides behind a veneer of protesting violence against women and unjust gender structures in society. But 21st century feminism ultimately fixes a woman’s self-worth on abortion access and advocacy. This is not the message of self-worth I will teach my daughter. Why teach her to believe in a movement that refuses to affirm her very existence. No, she is too precious to me.
My baby girl will be taught that her identify and value isn’t found in feminism. It’s found in the merciful One who paid her ransom from sin with the blood of Jesus Christ.