(CNSNews.com) – The Episcopal House of Deputies adopted a series of resolutions regarding abortion and gender ideology during the 80th General Convention of the Episcopal Church in Baltimore, Md.
The General Convention, which meets every three years, serves as the governing body of the Episcopal Church. It is comprised of two houses: The House of Bishops and The House of Deputies. Although the two legislative bodies meet separately, the two must concur with one another in order for resolutions to be passed.
During this year’s convention, the House of Deputies acted to adopt Resolution D066 (Addressing restrictions on access to gender affirming care), with which the House of Bishops concurred:
Resolved, that the 80th General Convention calls for the Episcopal Church to advocate for access to gender affirming care in all forms (social, medical, or any other) and at all ages as part of our Baptismal call to ‘respect the dignity of every human being’; and be it further
Resolved, that the 80th General Convention affirms that all Episcopalians should be able to partake in gender affirming care with no restriction on movement, autonomy, or timing; and be it further
Resolved, that the 80th General Convention understands that the protection of religious liberty extends to all Episcopalians who may need or desire to access, to utilize, to aid others in the procurement of, or to offer gender affirming care; and be it further
Resolved, that this 80th General Convention supports public policies at the local, state, and national levels in all our countries to support gender affirming care.
The bicameral legislature also passed Resolution D076 (Addressing the Ongoing Harm of Crisis Pregnancy Centers), with the Bishops concurring:
That the 80th General Convention denounces the work of Crisis Pregnancy Centers, also known as Pregnancy Resource Centers; and be it further
Resolved, that the 80th General Convention apologizes for the Church’s previous support of Crisis Pregnancy Centers as detailed in Resolution 1994-D105.
The two Houses also passed Resolution D083 (Addressing the erosion of reproductive rights and autonomy) which affirms the right of an abortion up until the point of birth for all Episcopalians:
Resolved, the House of Bishops concurring,
That the 80th General Convention recognizes that pregnancy and childbirth are dangerous undertakings that risk permanent disability and death for those who bear children; and be it further
Resolved, that the Episcopal Church reaffirms that parenthood ‘should be initiated only advisedly and in full accord with this understanding of the power to conceive and give birth which is bestowed by God,’ (1988-C047); and be it further;
Resolved, that the 80th General Convention affirms that all Episcopalians should be able to access abortion services and birth control with no restriction on movement, autonomy, type, or timing; and be it further
Resolved, that the 80th General Convention understands that the protection of religious liberty extends to all Episcopalians who may need or desire to access, to utilize, to aid others in the procurement of, or to offer abortion services.
In the 2018 General Convention, the church declared “that equitable access to women’s health care, including women’s reproductive health care, is an integral part of a woman’s struggle to assert her dignity and worth as a human being.”
This year’s General Convention came in lieu of the Church’s 2021 General Convention, which was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This makeup convention is closed to visitors “out of safety and concern for all attendees.” The Convention started on July 8 and ends today on July 11.