Following a bombshell leak from the Supreme Court indicating a likely overturn of Roe v. Wade, one Washington D.C. church took to the pulpit to affirm the impending decision.
King’s Church DC, an up-and-coming congregation located downtown, is largely made up of Capitol Hill staffers, think tank and advocacy gurus, and government employees. King’s Church DC’s strong, unified community is reputable among the greater evangelical collective in the District.
Leading up to the release of the Court’s formal decision, Co-Pastor Ben Palka’s message read:
“The leak related to the U.S. Supreme Court case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization reminds us of the urgent need to pray and for action at this pivotal moment in our country.
Christians contend there are no disposable people in God’s economy. Every human being has dignity and worth, no matter what they believe.”
The statement continued by rebutting the position that morality should not be legislated.
“Some say that it is wrong to try to ‘legislate morality’ and this is all about imposing religion on the culture. But the truth is that every law ‘imposes’ someone’s moral ‘values’ on someone else. There is no such thing as a neutral value system. A law that prohibits slavery or stealing, for example, imposes a belief that those things are wrong and upholds the Christian tenet that human life has intrinsic worth.
Common sense, science, and the Bible itself clearly indicate that human life begins at conception.”
While recognizing the challenges associated with some abortions, the statement sanctioned Christians to pray for a Roe reversal.
“We understand this is a sensitive issue. We understand the objections quite well. But at the end of the day, with the very rare exception of the mother’s own life, there is no good reason to exclude real people from the human community and from the protection of our laws due to their stage of development.
As we await the Court’s decision, we urge everyone who calls on the name of Jesus Christ to pray diligently that the final decision of the Court will indeed bring about the reversal of Roe and Casey.”
While the overturn of Roe (and Planned Parenthood v. Casey) would be a fierce moral victory in the United States, the Church must take up the mantel to ensure that women who are found in circumstances that cause them to consider abortion are taken care of. Several programs such as Her PLAN of the Susan B. Anthony List already exist to connect mothers of preborn and born children with resources such as food, supplies, counseling, healthcare etc. Churches in America can help by amplifying the awareness of these programs.
“We also recognize that if Roe and Casey are finally overturned, it is not the end. The end of Roe will come with a responsibility to show more compassion and care for women who find themselves in difficult situations, limited healthcare, and increased financial strain.”
The statement concluded by encouraging the Church to pray for the justices of the Supreme Court as they face the final days leading up to the release of perhaps the most consequential case of our time.
“May God grant wisdom and courage to the justices of the United States Supreme Court, who now face one of the most important judicial decisions in the history of our country, a nation built on the self-evident truth that all people are endowed by their Creator with the unalienable right to Life.”
Read: Is This the End of Roe in America? Three Things Christians Should Know and Do
Pastoral staff leaders across Washington D.C. recognize the challenge of navigating political matters amid a congregation of political professionals. King’s Church DC does not hide from discussing political issues.
Co-Pastor Wesley Welch described the intention of the statement as “rare” and “crucial.”
“Politics matter because people matter and politics have a tangible impact on people. While it is rare that we discuss matters related to politics on Sunday morning, the topic of abortion is crucial for the Church to engage with. The moral imperative with abortion goes well beyond the parameters of politics. Abortion legally terminates the life of a helpless innocent human created by God. A church that misses to speak into this crucial moment misses an opportunity to proclaim justice and truth to a broken world. We are continuing to pray that justice be delivered in the Dobbs decision while we also continue ministering to mothers in troubled circumstances.”
King’s Church DC volunteers on a weekly basis as the Capitol Hill Pregnancy Center. The center provides legal assistance, prenatal care, healthcare, supplies, and other resources for mothers in the D.C. area.
Instead of avoiding political banter, King’s Church DC seizes the opportunity to engage in political dialogue through a ministry called “Think.” Through this scheduled event, congregants of King’s Church DC and their guests gather on Sunday evenings to caucus on a variety of difficult issues. Each night has one topic, which can range from political, theological, or broadly cultural.
As Christians, we are called to engage the world and make an impact for the Kingdom of God without reservation. The Great Commission holds no caveats; thus, the Church must pursue the most vile, unjust, and darkest areas of the world — and Washington D.C. fits the bill.
The leaked draft, which has since been authenticated by the Court, was written by Justice Samuel Alito. Assigned by Chief Justice John Roberts, Alito’s draft is the “opinion of the Court” — the applied decision. That said, if the leaked document is indeed the final decision and given the contents of the opinion of the Court, Roe v. Wade will be overturned and the power to regulate abortion will return to the states as it was pre-1973.
According to the latest information, Justices Thomas, Alito, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, and Barrett have joined the opinion of the Court, while Justices Breyer, Kagan, and Sotomayor are in dissent, and Chief Justice Roberts’ position is, at this point, unknown. Roberts will likely be the sixth vote in the majority, although perhaps with a middle ground option that sways from the application of the opinion of the Court.
The next opinion issuance day at the Supreme Court is scheduled for Monday, May 16. The Court does not identify which decisions will be released, but the closer the term comes to completion at the end of June, the more decision days are scheduled per week. Decisions are typically released between 10 a.m. and 11 a.m.
NOTE: King’s Church DC is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that does not endorse candidates for elected public office, legislative initiatives, or political parties.