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Many pregnant women decline abortion after sermon

1 September 2009

One sometimes reads news items about how someone has blown up an abortion clinic, or terminated a doctor with a reputation for carrying out abortions. These things usually (actually, almost always) seem to happen in the USA. And when the perpetrator is caught, he (it is also usually a he) often tries to justify his action by saying that he was doing it for God.

Hat-tip to Fr Milovan for this news of a more excellent way.

Interfax-Religion:

Perm, August 28, Interfax – In Chaykovsky, the Perm Region, 40 percent of women visiting women’s health clinic refused to terminate their pregnancy after talking to an Orthodox priest.

Women in Chaykovsky are issued an abortion appointment only after a mandatory sermon of Father Igor, a priest in St. Trinity church, a Perm issue of Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper reports Friday.

During such meetings, women are asked to fill in questionnaires which include such questions as ‘If you have a child already, and you learn that he/she has drowned a kitten, will you punish your child for that?’, ‘Are you ready to meet the soul of your child after death?’, ‘If a criminal states in court that he murdered someone because his apartment was too small, will he be acquitted?’, ‘Could you ever have a look after abortion on what has been taken out of you?’

Father Igor talks to Muslim women, too.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. 1 September 2009 4:42 pm

    And what kind of support does Fr. Igor provide for the women after their babies are born? Childcare if the mother has to work, job training, help with school tuition?

    • 1 September 2009 7:12 pm

      The article didn’t say.

    • 1 September 2009 7:48 pm

      Father Igor is a minister of the Gospel. His job is to preach the Gospel. That does not create an obligation on his part to solve the practical problems of the people who believe and accept his preaching.

      If Father preaches against drunkenness, does that mean that he has to pay for everyone’s alcohol rehab? If he preaches against theft, does that mean he has to train every repentant burglar to get an honest job? If he preaches against fornication, does that mean he has to be a matchmaker to find every promiscuous person a spouse? Certainly not. The Gospel that he preaches is true whether or not he provides material support to his hearers.

      If you think Fr Igor is obligated to provide such support, then it is because you think abortion is a reasonable and morally acceptable solution to some practical problems of life. If so, then if Fr Igor arbitrarily takes this reasonable solution away, you think he ought to put some other solution in its place. But if abortion is not reasonable and morally acceptable, then there can be no such obligation.

      That is not to say that Christians ought not to provide the sort of material support that you are talking about (what we call by the quaint term “corporal works of mercy”). But they should do so not out of obligation, but out of the love of Christ which is in them.

      • 5 September 2009 9:16 pm

        But they should do so not out of obligation, but out of the love of Christ which is in them.

        I’m not sure those two things are as mutually exclusive as you suggest. After all, love is obligation. Saying you love someone and yet sending them on their way without helping them is a false and meaningless love. And Christ actually commanded his followers to love one another. So yes, there is an obligation there.

        I also disagree with your whole assertion that as a preacher of the gospel (of course, to what degree going on about whether some particular action is sinful qualifies as gospel seems debatable to me), Father Igor isn’t obligated to solve — or at least contribute to the solutions of — his listener’s practical problems. I’m reminded of Jesus, who once criticized the religious leaders of his time for placing heavy burdens upon others and then doing nothing to help them. This to me depicts a Christ who says the exact opposite: If you’re going to challenge people to take the harder, righteous road, you better be prepared to help them endure the journey. Especially when you also take it in combination with the parable of the goats and sheep and many other Biblical instructions on loving and caring for one’s neighbor.

        Personally, I suspect Father Igor does have ways of helping those women who come to him. It’s my impression that the Orthodox and Catholic churches are often exceedingly good about that sort of thing. But I just find the suggestion that there’s no obligation to help those one challenges to live a more Christian life to actually do so and help them when they face challenges due to life to be theologically questionable.

    • Kyralessa permalink
      29 September 2009 5:21 pm

      What a bizarre comment, Mary Sue. While Fr. Igor might indeed help the women out, I’d assume that he’s not obligated to provide support, because he’s not the one who knocked the women up in the first place.

      What kind of support does society provide when it tells us it’s not OK to murder a screaming toddler? What does such a question have to do with the morality of murder?

      • 29 September 2009 5:57 pm

        “Then He will also say to those on His left, `Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.'” — Matthew 25:41-43

        Nothing in the parable suggests that the sheep or goats took the naked person’s clothes away, threw the prisoner into prison, or took the starving person’s food away. And yet the Lord expected both the sheep and the goats to take care of those people’s needs regardless of that.

        • Kyralessa permalink
          30 September 2009 4:02 pm

          Of course, Christians should do such things. That’s different from saying that Christians *must* do such things in order for abortion to be illegal or immoral. Am I within my rights to murder my toddler if other people don’t agree to take care of him/her for me?

          • 30 September 2009 4:36 pm

            No. But that’s not what you’re original statement said. You’re original statement was that Fr. Igor was not obligated to help these women. I’m simply pointing out that the Bible disagrees pretty strongly with that statement.

  2. 3 September 2009 1:40 pm

    Confronting set of questions but it adds some perspective for sure.

  3. 8 September 2009 6:56 am

    Hello, this was just something I was thinking on today, as I was caring for a baby at my work. He came early because his mother had wanted an abortion (at about 20 weeks gestation) and had started the process.

    However, she changed her mind, but the damage had been done; and, the baby came a few weeks later only at a barely viable gestation, and weighing just over 500 grams. The baby will have harsh aftereffects of this choice: bad lungs, partially blind, and probably limitations with cognition due to cerebral injury. I can only imagine the mother’s guilt.

    I admire the priest’s attempt at intervention. Should the church then be responsible for the child? I would hope there would be an outreach for mothers who might need financial and emotional support. I would think that is where the help should come from, and not from say, government hand outs. This is a difficult topic, is it not?

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