Before the leadership of First Baptist Church Jacksonville decides to sponsor a fund raiser for the Assaf Harofeh Medical Center in Tel Aviv, Israel on November 8th at our church sanctuary (click here for the announcement, click here to see the FBC Jax scroll), I hope they will assure their congregation that we are not giving any money to a hospital at which abortions are performed.
Why is abortion a question? Am I being an alarmist in asking such a provocative question?
Since 1977 abortion has been legal in Israel, and depending on the woman's circumstances it may be funded by the government. The goverment has established 41 "abortion committees" around the country in public and private hospitals within Israel, to whom women make application when in need of an abortion. These committees will consist of a physician whose in obstetrics and gynecology; a family doctor or psychiatrist or internist or gynecologist; and a social worker. Law requires at least one woman must be present on each committee. "In 1999, 19,674 applications out of 20,581 were approved (96%) and 18,785 pregnancies were terminated. In addition, 16,000 abortions were illegally performed in private doctors' clinics." (ref: http://www.silentvoices.org/abortion.html)
Is it not reasonable for a Christian to ask of their pastor that is using the church to hold an event to raise funds for a hospital located in a foreign country that allows state-funded abortions, whether the hospital is one of the places where state-funded abortions (or any abortions) are performed? Is not this question of extra importance when the sponsor of the event is NOT a Christian group, but is in fact a for-profit corporation? Can the pastor even know with any certainty the answer to such a question about abortion at the hosptial? If he cannot, would it not be the wise thing to avoid using our resources to raise money for a hospital in such a country? And if he STILL decides to host the event, should he not explain his motives to his congregation for holding such an event?