A letter urging Christian leaders to demonstrate a united voice on the abortion issue and against the proposed Abortion Legislation Bill
9 March 2020
I am writing this to a collective group because I do not know how else to reach the leaders en masse. My hope is that it will actually be forwarded and read by YOU, the leadership of the large churches, movements and denominations. I would love to come and meet with and speak with you directly. I am one of the key people who got “March for Life Auckland” up and running – but I am not writing in that capacity. It is as a fellow believer who is greatly concerned that we are not seeing or hearing a united and collective voice from our church leadership (across the multiple denominations). That is no easy thing, but when was it ever meant to be easy being a follower of Christ? We are trying, but we need leaders to step up.
I attended the Open Heaven NZ event in early Feb. Church leaders from the larger (Pentecostal/Charismatic) denominations stood up and rallied us to pray – we collectively gathered to pray for our nation. We worshipped. We felt the presence of God. We sang songs declaring ‘’We are an Army“ and I was left thinking… Really? Are we? We certainly don’t act like it on the big issues – the nation shaping events, laws etc.
We are scattered on so many things and when a clear and pressing blatant issue (such as the abortion bill) is right in our faces, we leave it to a few privates, corporals and volunteers to lead on. While our Lord Jesus, the one we all serve, is highlighting this pressing issue. The timing of it – is happening now; a group of Christians across various faith streams joining to make something happen. The many who sent in submissions to the Bill. The many praying, lobbying. The March for Life Auckland team… We requested your assistance. That the issue could be declared, spoken into, to focus the 10,000 on an issue that is life or death.
We didn’t get it, so we simply handed out all our flyers to the many streaming into the venue. That was effective. The silence and lack of mention of the issue at the event was deafening. I left thinking, “Do these leaders actually truly, deeply care about what happens to families, women and the unborn who are being slaughtered… every day?”
Something was missing. It was a “show” of UNITY… But the depth and breadth of it translating into an actual tangible… felt lacking. I’m open to having this conversation… Are you?
This nation is facing the reality of an Abortion Law being passed, that will allow abortion – up to birth. So many Christians who care and are acting on this issue are looking to church leaders, those who hold an carry a movement, a large congregation to UNITE and LEAD – demonstrate a voice in this issue of life and death.
We know you care. But if this seems like simply another “thing” to add to a busy schedule or workload. What’s wrong? Tangible action. UNITED CHURCH LEADERS that our nation can see is what we lack. And that has weakened the church, many times over, when these issues arise. We don’t see UNITY and a VOICE rise to speak – the collective song sheet being sung loud and clear for our nation. So people like me, and the next-gen, rise up and just get done what needs doing.
We sent out emails to 800 churches in the Auckland Region. We did phone ups and call arounds. We spoke if anyone gave us an opportunity. We blitzed social media. We advertised on radio. We paid a price. We got very mixed responses. We are not radicals or crazy people. We are simply believers who care enough to do something. And those who got the message – responded. Some let their people know it was happening – many didn’t. (We got feedback – it might take people away from a conference, a church thing being organised… it wasn’t something they would speak about.)
Yet, the people came, those who did hear – it was a majority of believers who came. They cared. They marched. They spoke. We prayed. We respected and reflected. It was initiated by a mostly young team. This was incredibly heartening and humbling to be a part of. No big names, no “known” church leaders or voices, just people who turned their care, their prayer, their voices into action. And NZ responded.
It may not be your “thing” your passion, something you will speak to from the pulpit. I challenge you. WHY NOT? Are we too afraid of upsetting people? Isn’t Love our goal? Love for the women still grappling with her grief or guilt or shame… for the unborn, the women who would make a different decision, if she knew that whanau, people around her, truly cared and would support her? No condemnation, no shame. For those in Christ. That is our goal.
If other organisations can band together and sign letters “supporting” this heinous Bill – why are we not seeing the voice of righteousness from our church leaders in In NZ? The world can do it. So why can’t we?
A joint effort – across the various faith streams, Baptists, Anglicans, Charismatics, Pentecostals, Catholics… collectively saying ‘NO this is not right for our NATION.’ It gets left for the brave few. So unity is not demonstrated at a leadership level.
So what does God do? He hands it onto those who are listening – and who will act. It is left to a handful of people who are passionate about the cause to stir, convict, advocate, lobby and make others aware. I am left perplexed why we have had resounding SILENCE at a National level from church leadership. Do you just leave it to those “other” organisations? What message does that send our society? That the church – the Body of Christ – is not UNITED and cohesive in being a voice, the salt and light we are called to be.
This isn’t a ministry that is trying to promote itself, It isn’t a program to win people to Jesus and into congregations. It is the most vulnerable members of our humanity that we seek to give value to, and a voice for – and protect. It is a reflection of Gods Heart.
The time is NOW… If not… When?
Psalm 139, Proverbs 24.11
It takes ONE leader to do this. I am not a leader of a denomination or church. I am simply a fellow believer who cares deeply enough to ACT. And I challenge you to do the same. Reach out to other leaders – any who will UNITE and speak as ONE – to send a message to the leaders of our Nation who are taking us down a dark path.
If you know and turn away, doing nothing, it is on your head. Will you respond?
With respect and an openness to meet, to strategise, to stand in prayer – and action.
Tracy Kirkley | Team MFL
Over three thousand pro-lifers at March for Life in Auckland today.
Saturday 29 February 2020
Three thousand five hundred Kiwis attended the March for Life in Auckland today.
With Parliament just days away from voting on a Bill to liberalise abortion-up-to-birth in New Zealand those who marched made a public stand for the unborn and their often vulnerable mothers.
“We showed Parliament today that unborn life is not without advocates in New Zealand, chanting ‘love them both’ and ‘a person’s a person no matter how small’ throughout the march,” says Emma Rankin, March for Life Auckland spokesperson.
The family friendly and peaceful March for Life finished with speeches at a gathering in Aotea Square.
“One speaker shared about the pain she still experiences from remembering her three abortions, but encouraged those who have had abortions that healing is possible.”
“Another spoke about the shame he carries having driven 14 year olds to get abortions without the girls’ parents knowledge or consent while he worked in the school system, highlighting the fact that this happens frequently across New Zealand”, says Rankin.
Members of Parliament, including Agnes Loheni, Alfred Ngaro, and Simon O’Connor also addressed the thousands present, encouraging them that we as a nation must be the voice for the unborn.
“This Abortion Bill before us in Parliament is a wake-up call. A time for us as a society to sit-up. … This Bill seeks to remove outright what little legal rights are left for the unborn child. Proponents of this Bill will tell you otherwise, but this Bill is effectively abortion on demand up till birth”, said MP Agnes Loheni
March for Life Auckland was a grassroots event organised by a team of dedicated Kiwis who are passionate about the future for our country.
“We all come from a range of different cultures, faith backgrounds, and lived experiences, but we all agree on one thing, that extreme abortion laws are not who we are as Kiwis and that women and children deserve better than abortion,” says Rankin.