Over two dozen black pastors penned an open letter to Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Rev. Raphael Warnock over his declarations of support for abortion using his pastoral background.
Warnock on December 8 tweeted, “I am a pro-choice pastor.”
I am a pro-choice pastor.
— Reverend Raphael Warnock (@ReverendWarnock) December 9, 2020
One of the pastors who penned the letter is Alveda King, niece of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who served as pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Warnock now serves as pastor.
The pastors wrote, on Friday, that they were “compelled to confront” Warnock.
But precisely because we share so much in common with you, we feel compelled to confront your most recent statements concerning abortion. You have gone on the record saying that you are a “pro-choice pastor” who will “always fight for reproductive justice.” You have publicly expressed your views that abortion is an exercise of “human agency and freedom” that is fully consistent with your role as a shepherd of God’s people.
We believe these statements represent grave errors of judgment and a lapse in pastoral responsibility, and we entreat you to reconsider them. As a Christian pastor and as a Black leader, you have a duty to denounce the evil of abortion, which kills a disproportionate number of Black children. Your open advocacy of abortion is a scandal to the faith and to the Black community.
Abortion is fundamentally in conflict with the plain reading of the Bible. The Bible clearly teaches that human life is created by God beginning at conception. As Psalm 139 proclaims: “You knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am wonderfully and fearfully made.” What human being could possibly have the right to blot out an innocent life that God has wonderfully and fearfully made?
Warnock’s campaign questioned how much the signatories had in common with him since some of the pastors have supported his opponent, incumbent U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-GA), Fox 5 Atlanta reported. His campaign singled out King and Bishop Garland Hunt of The Father’s House.
The Rev. Dean Nelson, the letter’s organizer, said politics was not the motivation, as signatories included Republicans, Democrats and independents, the station reported.
The pastors’ letter ends with, “We implore you to uphold the Biblical defense of life and to fight against the systemic racism of abortion.”
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Jason M. Reynolds has more than 20 years’ experience as a journalist at outlets of all sizes.