Admonishing Leadership to Act Righteously, Part V

Series: How Faith Shapes Government, Part V – By Dr. Kelli Criss

Last week, we discussed the life of an African American pillar of faith, Reverend Richard Allen, who shaped early America’s church and lit the sparks of the modern civil rights movement.  Today’s blog, Admonishing Leadership to Act Righteously, Part V, explores Allen’s fight for the civil rights of Philadelphia’s black community and his admonition to the faith community to act righteously. 

Admonishing the Church to Act Righteously: Walking Out for Freedom 

In Pennsylvania, a Philadelphia congregation, St. George’s, founded for and lead by whites, often welcomed Allen’s preaching.  A 1780 Pennsylvania law gradually emancipating slaves carved a role for Philadelphia as a refuge for runaway Southern slaves.  As Allen preached at the early Sunday service at St. George’s church, the congregation filled with black members.  Another later Sunday service, considered the main service, also filled with black members.  St. George’s leadership implemented rules to limit African American attendance at the main Sunday service by providing seating only along the walls for blacks.  

Subsequently, as they attended the main service on Sunday, Allen and fellow African Americans were relegated to gallery seats only.  During this particular service, black congregants and Allen, who were seated in the gallery, kneeled for the prayer.  Allen, distracted by motion nearby, gazed over in time to see a white church trustee forcing his friend, Absalom Jones, to rise from his prayers.  The trustee informed Jones he couldn’t kneel in his current location.  Jones asked that the trustee wait until prayer ended.  The trustee called over another white trustee.  Yet another man, William White, was pulled up from his kneeling position to be moved by the white trustees.   

The African American congregants chose then to leave St. George’s, at that moment.  Such a decisive action in the early American church was incredibly historic.  Such a “walk out” of African American congregants consisting of myriad former slaves was the first of its kind in our nation’s history.  As during the trials of his earliest ministry on the New England circuits, Allen again experienced the goodness of God amid trouble.   

The Beginning of a Church for Philadelphia’s Black Faith Community 

St. George’s segregation denied many of Philadelphia’s African American Christians a place of worship; however, Allen and three close fellow sojourners, Absalom Jones, William White, Dorus Ginnings, knew God would use them to begin the journey toward founding their own Methodist Episcopal church.  They desired to establish a church in which blacks could worship without racism.  In the face of threats from St. George’s white elders to revoke their Methodist Episcopal membership, a 27-year-old Allen and his three brothers in Christ began prayer meetings.  Even these meetings occurred in defiance of St. George’s white leadership.  Allen set about fundraising to prepare for founding a church to serve Philadelphia’s black community and to operate the Free African Society.   

Born Together: The American Nation and the Free African Society 

At this watershed moment in American history, the adoption of the Free African Society’s articles of association coincided with the 1787 meeting of the Constitutional Convention.  Philadelphia’s Independence Hall hosted the Constitutional Convention beginning May 25, 1787 while Allen’s nearby home held the May 17th, 1787 inaugural meeting of the Free African society.  The momentous significance of the Free African Society’s inaugural meeting is twofold: a) it preceded the Constitutional Convention and b) it was the first entity of its kind devoted to, led by, and operated by devoted black people of faith.  What a tremendous indication of the importance of America’s birth as a nation where all people are created equally under God.  As a people of faith, we thank God for the significance of Allen’s leadership for our entire nation and for the kingdom of God.   

RELATED SITES:

Africans in America: Richard Allen

REFERENCES:

Alexander, E. Curtis.  Richard Allen. New York: ECA Associates, 1985.  

Mathews, Marcia M.  Richard Allen.  Baltimore: Helicon, 1963.   

Wesley, Charles H.  Richard Allen: Apostle of Freedom.  Washington, D. C.: The Associated Publishers, 1969.    

Newman, Richard S.  Freedom’s Prophet: Bishop Richard Allen, the AME Church, and the Black Founding Fathers.  New York: New York University Press, 2008. 

Admonishing Leadership to Act Righteously, Part IV

Series: How Faith Shapes Government, Part IV – By Dr. Kelli Criss

Last week, we focused upon how an imprisoned Paul confronted the Roman governor, Felix.  Today’s blog, Admonishing Leadership to Act Righteously, Part IV studies the life of an African American pillar of faith, Reverend Richard Allen. Through his leadership and faith, Reverend Allen shaped the church during America’s earliest years and blazed a trail for the modern civil rights movement.   

The remarkable power of God within Allen’s life is too commanding for only one blog, so Allen is the focus of two upcoming blogs as well. Today, we delve, particularly, into how Allen admonished leaders in society and the faith community to act righteously.  

Liberty for America and Allen

Allen worked from the age of seven in the fields of a Delaware plantation owner, Stokely Sturgis.  At the age of seventeen in 1777, Allen became a man of faith because of Methodist camp meetings occurring in the woods near the Delaware plantation where he was enslaved.  Thus, his faith blossomed just as America emerged as a nation.

Both blacks, free and enslaved, along with whites attended the camp meetings.  Preachers came weekly to teach at the meetings attended by Allen and some of his siblings.  Upon hearing about the meetings, local plantation owners told Allen’s master, Sturgis, that slaves should be prohibited from attending. 

Allen and his brother decided to use daily hard work to prove to Sturgis that involvement in the camp meetings and their faith made them better people in every way.  They wanted Sturgis to witness that faith enhanced people’s lives.  Allen and his brother planted spiritual seeds to help Sturgis become open to hearing the Methodist preachers who taught about freedom in Christ.

Allen’s faith was so strong that even at the age of seventeen, he knew God could change the beliefs of the plantation master.  If Sturgis could hear the gospel and be influenced by Allen and his brother’s own hard work and faith, then Sturgis would serve Christ and be convicted by the Holy Spirit to allow Allen to be free.  What a testimony of faith in God’s power to convict a man of his sin and to lead him to repentance!

God’s Intervention: A Master’s Salvation and a Slave’s Freedom  

Allen talked with Sturgis to ask about inviting a preacher to come to the plantation and Sturgis agreed.  A Methodist preacher did come to the plantation to preach about the gospel and to condemn slavery.  Many other preachers came weekly for months.  The message of the gospel pierced Sturgis’ conscience and enabled him to see that slavery was contrary to the Bible’s principles.  Sturgis suggested to Allen and his brother a plan for them to buy their freedom for 2,000 continental dollars or 60 pounds in gold and silver.  By the age of 20, Allen bought his freedom.

The Free African Society: Unifying Under the Gospel

As a free man in a newly birthed America, Allen spent his days cutting and selling wood and brickmaking at a brickyard.  Evenings and Sundays were spent sharing the gospel with neighbors.  This initial period of ministry brought various illnesses like rheumatism for Allen who was only 24 years old when he traveled through New England preaching.  Constant arduous travel in the elements was the source of his illnesses.  Not surprisingly, Allen’s woes coexisted with tremendous blessings, particularly, through his relationships with fellow sojourners, both black and white.  Across the nation, a Second Great Awakening unfolded.  (The First Great Awakening deluged the colonies as the country prepared for the American Revolution.) 

Through Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Connecticut, Allen and fellow ministers shared the gospel along the “circuits” or communities where ministers were sent to visit.  In Pennsylvania, a Philadelphia congregation, St. George’s, often welcomed Allen’s preaching.  At this time, Philadelphia’s population, port, and commerce exploded.  A 1780 Pennsylvania law gradually emancipating slaves carved a role for Philadelphia as a refuge for runaway Southern slaves. 

The burgeoning black population caught Allen’s attention.  He observed the economic and spiritual needs of Philadelphia’s inhabitants and ministered through forming a Free African Society.  This society, established in 1787, was a catalyst for unifying blacks under godly leadership.  The unity and identity formed among Free African Society leaders and those to whom it ministered, ultimately, led to Philadelphia’s first black churches.

Next week, join us for a discussion of Allen’s fight for the civil rights of Philadelphia’s black community and his admonition to the faith community to act righteously.

RELATED SITES:

Africans in America: Richard Allen  

REFERENCES:

Alexander, E. Curtis.  Richard Allen. New York: ECA Associates, 1985. 

Mathews, Marcia M.  Richard Allen.  Baltimore: Helicon, 1963.  

Wesley, Charles H.  Richard Allen: Apostle of Freedom.  Washington, D. C.: The Associated Publishers, 1969.   

Newman, Richard S.  Freedom’s Prophet: Bishop Richard Allen, the AME Church, and the Black Founding Fathers.  New York: New York University Press, 2008.   

Admonishing Leadership to Act Righteously, Part III

Series: How Faith Shapes Government, Part III – By Dr. Kelli Criss

Welcome back to our series, How Faith Shapes Government.  In Part II, our blog described how God used Joseph to shape civil government.  This week, Admonishing Leadership to Act Righteously, Part III, explores the truth of God’s dominion and a New Testament example of the leadership of people of faith. 

God’s Dominion – A Biblical Worldview 

As people of faith, we understand that God reigns over the destiny and leaders of our nation and the entire world.  Last week, we described Joseph’s role in the preservation of the Egyptian people and leadership during a seven-year famine.  God’s dominion over the world was clearly evident during Egypt’s national crisis. Let’s consider several truths from the Scriptures further exemplifying the dominion of God: a) God rules over all the world’s leaders; b) God reigns over even the boundaries of every nation; and c) God reigns over all nations and people. 

God rules over all the world’s leaders. 

“The Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will and sets over it the lowliest of men (Dan. 4:16).”  

“The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will (Prov. 21:1).”  

“Let every person be subject to the governing authorities.  For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.” (Rom. 13.1) 

God reigns over even the boundaries of every nation. 

“And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place (Acts 17:26).”  

God reigns over all nations and people. 

“For kingship belongs to the Lord, and he rules over the nations (Ps. 22:28).”  

“Who rules by his might forever, whose eyes keep watch on the nations – let not the rebellious exalt themselves (Ps. 66:7).” 

With this Biblical worldview, we make sense of the world.  Sharing our Biblical worldview with the public arena’s leadership is one way that people of faith affirm the dominion of God over all things.  We admonish civil authorities, as Daniel proclaimed, to “break off your sins by practicing righteousness and your inequities by showing mercy to the oppressed” (Dan. 4:27). 

New Testament Example: Imprisoned Paul Confronts a Roman Governor 

In the book of Acts, we observe an imprisoned Paul sharing a Biblical worldview with secular leadership.  In Caesarea, Paul admonished the Roman governor, Felix, while he faced trial during his imprisonment.  Paul “reasoned about righteousness and self-control and the coming judgment” (Acts 24:25).  The governor, Felix, “was alarmed and said, ‘Go away for the present.’” (Acts 24:25).  Hearing of God’s pending judgement being imminent for everyone, Felix was “alarmed” as he heard the certain condemnation faced by all the Roman Empire.  We see in this example, Paul executing his responsibility to confront civil government with the truth of God’s righteousness and dominion, even at his own trial. 

Interestingly enough, the conversation did not end at this point. Felix’s greed drove him as he “hoped that money would be given to him by Paul” when Felix “sent for him often and conversed with” Paul (Acts 25:26).  Although Felix’s greed was not satisfied by any exchange of money, Felix continued to converse with Paul.  If their initial conversation was any indication of their continued discussions, Felix experienced an earful about the reality of God’s dominion over humanity.  How remarkable that even as an imprisoned person of faith, Paul spoke God’s truth to a Roman governor.   

Faith during Trials 

Many Americans of faith experience silencing of their Biblical worldview and violating of their religious rights that are sanctioned by various American government branches (e.g., Obama-appointed judge rules that healthcare workers with strongly held religious convictions are prohibited from abstaining from various procedures like abortion which defy their faith).  At Florida FFC, we observe these struggles within our national faith family and consider the boldness with which Paul addressed Felix.   

We draw strength from God as well as from our connection with fellow sojourners who travel the journey of faith with us.  Like Paul, we experience faith during our trials through the grace of God to speak truth to people in power who are under God’s dominion, whether they acknowledge it or not.   

Next week, we invite you to experience the life of an African American pillar of faith, Reverend Richard Allen, who shaped the church during America’s earliest years and blazed a trail for the modern civil rights movement.   

REFERENCES:

Grudem, W. (2010). Politics according to the Bible: A Comprehensive resource for understanding modern political issues in light of Scripture. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

You Are God’s Ambassador: Admonishing Leadership to Act Righteously, Part II

Series: How Faith Shapes Government, Part II – By Kelli Criss

Welcome back to our blog series, How Faith Shapes Government.  This week, we dive further into how your Biblical worldview can impact the public arena.  Today’s blog, You are God’s Ambassador: Admonishing Leadership to Act Righteously, further considers the relationship between civil government and God’s kingdom.  We also detail the actions of another Old Testament person of faith who greatly influenced a secular government and saved a nation. 

Two Realms – Binary and Unified

Last week, we detailed Jesus’s conversation with the Pharisees regarding a separation of “Caesar’s” and God’s power in Matthew 22.  To explain more about the novel power structure Jesus described to the Pharisees, we review Jesus’s conversation with the Pharisees.  After Jesus was asked, “Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?” Jesus requested a denarius, the Roman Empire’s coin (Matt. 22:17,19 English Standard Version).  He wanted to know whose image was on the coin and those present replied “Caesar” (Matt. 22:21).  Subsequently, Jesus stated, “Therefore render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s” (Matt. 22:21).   

For the Pharisees and those present, it was critical to understand that Jesus’s new order was both binary and unified.  The new order’s structure is binary because two realms, God’s and “Caesar’s” exist.  The new order’s structure is unified because God’s dominion expands over all people.  As people of faith, we are God’s representatives on earth who serve as a moral compass, expressing His views and desires. We can survey Scripture and history for examples of the serious impact people of faith have exerted upon secular government.  The influence of Joseph is one such example which reveals how a person of faith admonished secular government leaders to act righteously, but never infringed upon these leaders’ freedom to choose or neglect religious faith.  

Joseph Delivers God’s “Favorable Answer” to Pharaoh

Joseph’s authority in Egypt is formidable. He serves second only to Egypt’s Pharaoh after he interprets Pharaoh’s dream (Gen. 41:41-45).  When Pharaoh needs his dreams interpreted because no one else in the kingdom has been able to provide interpretation, Joseph tells Pharaoh “It is not in me; God will give Pharaoh a favorable answer” (Gen. 41: 14-15). By interpreting Pharaoh’s dream, God uses Joseph to reveal that seven years of plentiful harvest will be followed by seven years of famine (Gen. 41: 28-32).  As an instrument of God, Joseph even supplies Pharaoh with a strategic plan from God – select leadership to store and set aside food during the abundant harvest years so that resources are available during the famine (Gen. 41:33-36).  When the famine comes and the Egyptians are desperate, Pharaoh tells the people “Go to Joseph. What he says to you, do” (Gen. 41:55).   

It’s particularly significant that God saves the Egyptian population, a nation of people who, during Joseph’s leadership, neglect faith in God.  Furthermore, God uses a man of faith, Joseph, to guide a secular government’s ruler, Pharaoh.  The act of saving Egypt from starvation exemplifies the goodness and dominion of God over all people.  God’s power is exerted through Joseph without coercing Egypt or

Pharaoh to choose or neglect faith in Him.  Indeed, Joseph is God’s spokesman who guides Pharaoh in preserving the nation, without even a mention of Egypt’s lack of faith.  

Freedom of Religious Expression

Considering the current onslaught of suppression of free speech and religious expression in America, we want to assert a final reality:  Although leaders of faith respect the free will of others and, thus, do not command or coerce those within their sphere of influence to follow or support a specific religion, the United States’ Constitution protects freedom of religious expression in public spaces (e.g., Maryland’s “Peace Cross” honoring veterans permitted on public land and public school students’ rights to express religious beliefs at school, wear clothing displaying religious messages, and pray at school, etc.).  We balance our need to respect man’s free will with a coequal mandate to protect and engage in the freedom of religious expression. 

You Are God’s Ambassador

Certainly, God can shape civil government, even now, through people of faith, just as he did through Joseph.   They simply admonished civil government leaders to act righteously and care for all people.  We are called to follow their example and to serve as a moral compass for secular government. 

Take a step today toward fulfilling your role in shaping government with your faith by completing the volunteer form on Florida FFC’s homepage.  Let’s lock arms together in partnership as we serve God and shape America with our faith. 

Next week, we describe leaders from the New Testament as well as the United States who have shaped civil government with their faith. We are God’s ambassadors, praying for government officials and asking God to use us to influence secular government. 

REFERENCES:

Grudem, W. (2010). Politics according to the Bible: A Comprehensive resource for understanding modern political issues in light of Scripture. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

Admonishing Leadership to Act Righteously, Part I

Series: How Faith Shapes Government – By Kelli Criss

Welcome to our blog series, How Faith Shapes Government.  At Florida FFC, we join people of faith from around the state to express a Biblical worldview in the public arena.  Today’s blog, Admonishing Leadership to Act Righteously, describes Jesus’s views on the relationship between civil government and God’s kingdom as well as provides an Old Testament example of a person of faith acting to influence secular government.   

God’s Dominion over Two Realms 

When he was asked about the power of God versus the power of civil government in people’s lives, Jesus faced this question in Matthew 22 from the Pharisees (religious scholars of Israel): “Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?” (Matt. 22:17 English Standard Version).  Jesus requested, “Show me the coin for the tax” (v. 19).  The Pharisees brought him the coin of the Roman Empire, the denarius.  Jesus wanted to know whose image was on the coin and those present replied “Caesar” (Matt. 22:21).  Next, Jesus stated, “Therefore render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s” (Matt. 22:21).   

Both the state and the kingdom of God have unique power and influence.  Jesus neither denies either entity’s existence, nor diminishes the authority of either.  Israel, during this period, existed as a “theocracy” in which all citizens were under God’s power and laws.  Israel’s civil government and God’s government were, thus, one in the same.  Jesus’ declaration regarding two realms of power is, therefore, revolutionary for the Israelites.  A new structure of worldly governance meant that God’s realm was not to be under the sphere of civil government.  From this novel organization, a central governing principle of our democracy emerged: the freedom to choose or neglect a religious faith must exist under every civil government. Namely, “the things that are God’s” supersede the authority of “Caesar” and yet, both possess realms of influence.   

Daniel Counsels King Nebuchadnezzar  

A prominent Old Testament example involves Daniel’s counseling the pagan king, Nebuchadnezzar, in the Babylonian kingdom. Daniel proclaims to the king “break off your sins by practicing righteousness and your inequities by showing mercy to the oppressed” (Dan. 4:27).  Not only does he advise the king, but also Daniel serves as “ruler over the whole province of Babylon” and “chief prefect over all the wise men of Babylon” (Dan. 2:48).  By today’s standards, Babylon certainly could match our nation “toe-to-toe” for sin and inequity; yet, Daniel was a godly leader in a secular nation who exhorted leadership to “practice righteousness.”   

Your Role in our Society 

Through Daniel’s example we see God’s plan to provide guidance to secular government through people of faith.  In our present-day society, admonishing leaders to act righteously begins with you!   

How is God calling you to be an influence? 

At Florida Faith and Freedom Coalition, we believe you are called to speak God’s truth to power and to allow your admonishing words to serve as a moral compass for secular government.  One thing you can do today is sign up to volunteer on our home page, under the “Voter Mobilization” section.  We cannot wait to see how God will use YOU to admonish leadership to act righteously! 

Next week, we describe another Old Testament man of faith who shaped civil government with his faith. Let’s keep praying for government officials and asking God to use us to influence those officials. We’re looking forward to sharing with you again next week.  

REFERENCES: 

Grudem, W.  (2010).  Politics according to the Bible: A Comprehensive resource for understanding modern political issues in light of scripture. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.  

PEOPLE OF FAITH REGISTER TO VOTE IN MIAMI

Registering Voters in Miami

This week’s blog focuses on Florida Faith and Freedom’s efforts to impact civil government with faith and Biblical principles.  During October, we’ve been busy signing up new voters and welcoming, Dr. Ralph Reed, National Chairman of the Faith and Freedom Coalition.  Dr. Reed came to Florida to speak alongside pastor, Apostle Guillermo Maldonado, at Miami’s El Rey Jesús Church.  Among other topics, Dr. Reed and Apostle Maldonado explained the current need for people of faith to impact the world.

Miami’s El Rey Jesús Church Welcomes Dr. Ralph Reed

Approximately 90 million Christians are eligible to vote in the United States, but less than half that number actually turn out on Election Day.  Furthermore, about 15 million Christians aren’t even registered to vote!

As part of our ongoing voter registration efforts in Florida, we held a major voter registration event last weekend.  Hundreds of citizens took the first step toward exercising their civic duty by registering to vote at El Rey Jesús Church in Miami. In addition, Faith and Freedom Coalition National Chairman, Dr. Ralph Reed, joined pastor, Apostle Guillermo Maldonado, to discuss important issues such as appointment of pro-life judges, limitation of the Johnson Amendment, and restoration of the Mexico City Policy.

Pro-Life Judges: What’s Our Current Status?

Noting that he was not speaking on behalf of any candidate for president or political party, Dr. Reed, emphasized that President Trump has appointed 150 conservative, lifetime federal judges and two pro-life Supreme Court Justices.

In addition, we note, at this point in his term, President Obama had not confirmed nearly as many appeals court or district court judges while President Bush had confirmed more district court judges by now.  That said, President Trump is way ahead of past presidents on appeals court judges, who have the final say in most federal appeals.

Nearly 1 in every 4 seats on U.S. appeals courts is now filled by a judge appointed by Trump.

Protecting Pastors’ and Churches’ Freedom of Speech

Dr. Reed also discussed the importance of limiting enforcement of the Johnson Amendment, which prohibits organizations that are exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the IRS code from engaging in political campaign activities.  It is this amendment that causes many pastors and churches to fear loss of their tax-exempt status simply by exercising their right to free speech. In 2017, President Trump signed an executive order directing the executive branch to limit its enforcement of this unfair provision.

Preventing U.S. Taxpayer-Funded Abortion Abroad

Lastly, Dr. Reed pointed out that President Trump restored the policy preventing organizations that promote abortion overseas from receiving your taxpayer dollars. Sometimes called the “Mexico City Policy,” the rule was put in place by President Reagan in 1984 at an international population-control conference in Mexico City. It requires private organizations to avoid promotion of abortion.

Pastor, Apostle Guillermo Maldonado, summed up the spiritual basis of these worldly public policy issues: “Contrary to what many believe, life begins in heaven, not on earth…We were a fully formed idea in His mind before we ever got our physical bodies.”  He continued, “Abortion is a sin, not only because it is the taking of a human life, but also because it is an attack on a divine purpose…Nobody has a right to truncate that divine purpose.”

Policy matters.  Voting matters.

The Florida Faith and Freedom Coalition will continue to work with our national leadership to register voters and help elect leaders who faithfully adhere to our shared principles.  May God empower us to impact civil government with faith.

Be sure to read our blog next week about how faith shapes government through God’s leaders.  We’ll explore Biblical and early American people of faith who admonished civil government leaders to act righteously and protect all of humanity. 

Planned Parenthood and the Factory Abortion Industry Part III

October 18, 2019, by Eric Criss

Our blog series, Planned Parenthood and the Factory Abortion Industry, explores the Protect Life Rule.  In part II of our series, we described the burden placed upon women with low incomes by Planned Parenthood’s refusal of Title X funds.  This week, our blog focuses upon pro-life groups’ perceptions of the Protect Life Rule. 

Protect Life Rule Takes Effect

After legal challenges from abortion rights advocates, Planned Parenthood among them, the San Francisco-based U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled on July 11, 2019 that the Protect Life Rule may take effect even as legal challenges continue.  This court ruling and the Protect Life Rule, in general, received a delighted welcome from pro-life groups like the Susan B. Anthony List, March for Life, Students for Life of America, and Americans United for Life.  

Taxpayers, Especially Young Women, Don’t Want TFund Abortion 

Americans United for Life’s president and CEO, Catherine Glenn Foster stated that under the Protect Life Rule, “no physician in America is being stopped from referring a patient for an abortion – they just can’t demand taxpayer funding to do so.” 

Kristan Hawkins, President of Students for Life of America explained, “Planned Parenthood has violated the spirit of the Title X family planning program for years by collecting millions of dollars while they marketed abortion.”  Further clarifying the pro-life movement’s position toward the value of women’s health and unborn children’s lives, Hawkins insisted, “Pregnancy is not a disease cured by abortion, and ending the connection between abortion and family planning is a victory for common-sense health care.”   

Hawkins’ group, Students for Life of America, commissioned a poll conducted by The Polling Company/Woman Trend, finding that, by a 3 to 1 margin, 18 to 34 year olds would rather their tax dollars support Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) than Planned Parenthood.  FQHC refers to centers with a government designation that offer health care services to U.S. locations which are not being adequately served.

Future for America’s Unborn Looking Brighter

Concerning the on-going legal challenges to the Protect Life Rule, there is hope.  A 5-4 U.S. Supreme Court 1991 ruling held that the establishment of rules to grant tax dollars exclusively to family planning clinics that neglect to “encourage, promote, or advocate abortion” was the government’s right.  

Legal challenges mounted against the Protect Life Rule may thus be doomed by legal precedent. Either way, this sad chapter in American history continues to be written.

Be on the lookout for our follow-up blog, detailing the life span of Title X from its 1970 inception to the present.  We will demonstrate the historical ebb and flow of Executive policymaking on behalf of women and the unborn.

Check out these links for more about the national Pro-Life groups mentioned in this blog.

The Susan B. Anthony List https://www.sba-list.org/

March for Life https://marchforlife.org/

Students for Life of America https://marchforlife.org/

Americans United for Life https://aul.org/

Planned Parenthood and the Factory Abortion Industry – Part II

Welcome back to our blog series, Planned Parenthood and the Factory Abortion Industry.  Last week, we explained the connection between the Protect Life Rule and Title X’s original intent.  This week, our blog focuses upon Planned Parenthood’s greed and their decision to marginalize women with low incomes.

Straining Women’s Finances Even Further

In the U.S., Planned Parenthood is one of about 100 groups that run hundreds of clinics receiving Title X funds.  Planned Parenthood traditionally serves 40 percent of the 4 million women with low incomes who benefit from Title X; however, the national network of clinics bowed out of funding in August 2019 because of the Protect Life Rule’s insistence on adherence to Title X stipulations.  Particularly, the stipulations barred Title X grantees from providing abortion. (Note: A grantee is an organization which receives Title X funds.) Planned Parenthood has 400 clinics nationwide that have foregone Title X funds.  Approximately $60 million in Title X funds annually has gone to Planned Parenthood. 

The Trump administration addressed Planned Parenthood’s decision to forego Title X funding as a “self-inflicted” injury.  Planned Parenthood plans to make up the financial shortfall by tapping into reserves and reaching out to private donors for funding.  The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) website states that Planned Parenthood “is actually choosing to place a higher priority on the ability to refer for abortion instead of continuing to receive federal funds to provide a broad range of acceptable and effective family planning methods and services to clients in need of these services.”

In states like Minnesota, areas of New Hampshire, Utah and Vermont, Planned Parenthood is virtually the sole Title X provider for women’s health services.  Thus, these states will have patients forced to pay higher fees.  “This means that women are going to have to struggle with maybe trying to come up with $10 to contribute to their health care when before they only had $5” stated Karrie Galloway, chief executive officer and president of Planned Parenthood Association of Utah. 

Rural Women With Low Incomes Set To Suffer Most

Smaller health clinics, especially in rural locations, that have no connection to Planned Parenthood will be particularly hard hit by a refusal to comply with the Protect Life Rule.  Without Planned Parenthood’s extensive donor list, rural clinics will have to search for funds elsewhere. 

The decision by large conglomerates like Planned Parenthood and smaller rural clinics to forego Title X funds so they can continue offering and providing abortions is ominous.  Their actions paint a dismal picture of the value placed upon human life and women’s health.  The current situation certainly sheds light upon an expanding hole left among women’s health services providers and, thus, an opportunity for faith-based clinics to meet women’s health care needs. 

Planned Parenthood Worships The Almighty Dollar

So why has Planned Parenthood chosen now to turn its back on women with low incomes? Title X funds enabled Planned Parenthood’s abortion focus to be unencumbered until the Protect Life Rule demanded they separate Title X resources from abortion services. “Money is fungible,” points out Jeanneane Maxon, associate scholar with the Charlotte Lozier Institute.  Maxon notes that “Money designated for one purpose (e.g., family planning) necessarily frees up funds for other purposes (e.g., abortion/abortion referrals).  As such, organizations that provide abortions or abortion referrals have consistently opposed measures that require them to bifurcate or designate Title X funding . . . Such organizations have prioritized reliance on abortion as a method of family planning over the provision of Title X-funded services to women seeking assistance with family planning.” Clearly, Planned Parenthood is sincerely interested in abortions and money.

  Related Articles

Ten Truths About Title X

Title X Final Rule Compliance and Enforcement

Planned Parenthood and the Factory Abortion Industry Part I

September 4, 2019

By Dr. Eric Criss

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Press coverage intensified in August as the deadline for compliance with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Title X Protect Life Rule came and went.  This blog series, Planned Parenthood and the Factory Abortion Industry, covers the current Protect Life Rule’s impact and its origins. Today let’s talk about the history of Title X, specifically the recent rule’s link to Title X’s original intent, and the reason Planned Parenthood’s sacrificed its Title X funding. 

The Act’s Original Intent

Pro-life groups, the Trump administration, the medical establishment, and pro-choice groups alike have reacted to the Protect Life Rule also known as Title X’s Abortion Provider Prohibition Act.  The original intent of Title X reveals the necessity for the current Protect Life Rule.  In 1970, under Nixon, Congress passed the Family Planning Services and Population Research Act which included Title X.  Significant for the 2019 Protect Life Rule is section 1008 of the original 1970 act, which reads “none of the funds appropriated under this title shall be used in programs of facilities where abortion is a method of family planning.”  At issue under the current rule lies taxpayer funded abortion and, more specifically, funding family planning and women’s health services as opposed to abortion. 

HHS clarified the need for clear streams of funding saying there is a need for “clear financial and physical separation between Title X funded projects and programs or facilities where abortion is a method of family planning.  This separation will ensure adherence to statutory restrictions and provide needed clarity for the public and for Title X clinics about permissible and impermissible activities for Title X projects.”  In other words, the Protect Life Rule requires grantees (clinics receiving Title X funds) to be located separately from abortion clinics and expects grantees to receive funding which remains entirely separate from moneys which cover abortion. 

Planned Parenthood: Factory Abortion Provider

Now, the response of some women’s health clinics is telling and, considering their disregard for human life, their refusal of Title X funds falls right in line with their political and fiscal agenda.  We know clearly who responds to politics rather than the needs of American women in rural and urban areas who struggle financially.  Guess who doesn’t prioritize women’s health care?  Clinics who provide abortion and women’s health services, namely, Planned Parenthood, who have refused Title X funds since the Protect Life Rule’s passing.   The need for cancer screenings, annual exams, pregnancy testing, and STI testing exists among 4 million women with low incomes.

Planned Parenthood’s decision to turn down Title X funds reveals the priority they place upon abortion services and their pro-abortion political agenda even above providing health services for women with low incomes. According to its 2017-2018 Annual Report, Planned Parenthood performed 332,757 abortions.   Do you wonder how much Planned Parenthood makes for performing abortions?  You guessed it . . . Planned Parenthood obscures their abortion earnings.  Within the same annual report, Planned Parenthood claims over $2 billion in net assets, including income of $1.6 billion for its last fiscal year and $244.8 million in excess of revenue over expenses. 

Factory Abortion Profits

Jeanneane Maxon, J.D., an associate scholar for the Charlotte Lozier Institute, estimates Planned Parenthood’s possible range of abortion income as roughly $216 million to $334 million.  Maxon explains, “Assuming that the prices shown in Planned Parenthood of Southern New England’s Cost Calculator are reflective of nationwide prices, Planned Parenthood would have received income between $216,292,050 on the low-end (an in-clinic abortion under 12 weeks without sedation) to $334,420,785 on the high-end (an in-clinic abortion between 16-18.6 weeks with sedation).” Planned Parenthood’s significant abortion earnings reveal why they chose to turn down Title X funds which serve women with low incomes.  They prefer raking in the dough by discussing and promoting abortions and sharing locations with abortion facilities over providing health services for women.  Next week, we further consider the impact of clinics’ refusal of Title X funds upon women with low incomes and describe the responses to the Protect Life rule by pro-life groups.

Related Articles:

Planned Parenthood’s Abortion Priority Revealed Through Rejection of Title X Funding

HHS Title X Statutes & Regulations