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Episcopalian priestess: My abortion allowed me to finish Divinity School, get ordained

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Reverend Anne Fowler, 2013.

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 3, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) -- Among scores of women testifying to the U.S. Supreme Court yesterday about why women require abortion to succeed is a Christian pastor who praised the practice for allowing her to finish divinity school and become a minister. 

“If the Reverend Anne Fowler had not had access to an abortion when she accidentally became pregnant after enrolling in Divinity School, she would never have been able to graduate, to serve as a parish rector, or to help the enormous number of people whose lives she has touched," an amicus brief submitted to the U.S. Supreme Court states.

Reverend Anne Fowler, an abortion activist with the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice and former Planned Parenthood board member, related in the brief how she became pregnant after her husband had left her while pursuing her goal of becoming a minister at Boston’s Episcopal Divinity School. 

“In 1981, in her second year at Divinity School, Anne accidentally became pregnant. She believed her partner would not be a suitable parent; their relationship ended soon after the abortion. Already solely responsible for her daughter, Anne knew she could not complete Divinity School and pursue a career as a priest if she did not have an abortion,” the brief states. 

Fowler decided abortion was the right decision for her.

“She has never regretted her decision and is grateful that she did not have to travel far, which would have caused her additional stress and financial hardship,” the brief states.

Described by pro-lifers as the most important abortion case heard by the Supreme Court in 25 years, the outcome of Whole Women's Health v. Hellerstadt will determine if a 2013 Texas abortion licensing and safety law (HB2) that, among other provisions, requires abortionists to maintain hospital privileges within 30 miles of their abortion facilities, is valid. 

In a 2007 article on her abortion experience, however, Fowler wrote that she did feel “sorrow and loss at the time of my abortion,” but that her choices of becoming a minister and having an abortion “were right for me and my circumstances: morally correct in their context, practical, and fruitful in their outcomes.”

After becoming ordained in 1984 Fowler has gone on to speak at conferences hosted by the National Abortion Federation where she tells pro-abortion audiences that “God was on their side.”

“To talk theologically about women's right to choose is to talk about justice, equality, health and wholeness, and respect for the full humanity and autonomy of every woman. Typically, as moral theologians, we discuss the value of potential life (the fetus) as against the value of lived life – the mature and relational life of a woman deciding her capacity to continue or terminate a pregnancy. And we believe that, in general, the value of that actual life outweighs the value of the potential,” she wrote in her 2007 article titled Abortion as a Moral Choice.

Christianity has always opposed abortion, from the time of the New Testament. The Bible teaches that from conception, the womb holds a human person, calling pregnancy "to be with child" (Isaiah 7:14). Many biblical individuals are explicitly described as “called” or “known” from the womb, such as Jeremiah (Jeremiah 1:4-5), Isaiah (Isaiah 44:2;  49:1), Job (Job 10:8-12), Paul (Gal. 1:15), and John the Baptist (Lk. 1:15). 

Early Christian documents condemning abortion include the Didache, where the Apostles teach, “Do not murder a child by abortion or kill a newborn infant.” 

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