Like so many of you, I was shocked earlier this week to read that the Supreme Court is likely to overturn a landmark decision that has guided policy and law for half a century. The assurance of competent, legal, medical treatment in situations involving reproductive care is more than just a political argument about ‘pro-life’ vs. ‘pro-choice.’ It guides how we listen to women about their stories and their choices. It instructs how we legislate about child care and early childhood education. It informs how we pay for prenatal and post-natal health care for women and children. It is a reflection of how we embody the radical care and welcome that Christ showed to everyone in their intensely particular and nuanced lives. It breaks my heart that our nation might use our legal system to force women to give birth in all situations, regardless of their own physical or emotional or spiritual health, regardless of their ability to care for and support themselves and a child, regardless of their desire and capacity to welcome another human life into the world.
As we approach Mothers’ Day, with all of the emotional and spiritual realities that brings for so many, I pray that women who do not have the desire or capacity to become mothers will not be forced to do so; I pray that children who are not wanted will not be forced to be born into a family that will neglect and abuse them. I pray that all of us will find ways to express our love and concern for all of God’s beloved children in ways that do not rely on policies and laws that abuse and neglect and mistreat women through codified mysogyny. I pray that the Risen Christ will continue to bring more light and more life into our world.