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Overturning of Roe Is Not a Win for People of Faith: Faith Leaders from Across the Country Denounce Dobbs Ruling


Friday, June 24, 2022


Austin Schuler, aschuler@faithinpubliclife.org, 540-280-3393

Overturning of Roe Is Not a Win for People of Faith:
Faith Leaders from Across the Country Denounce Dobbs Ruling

Washington, DC — Today, faith leaders from across the country denounced the Supreme Court decision made in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.

Sheila Katz (she/her)

CEO, National Council of Jewish Women

Washington, DC

“Today’s decision by the Supreme Court is a moral failure. It will put lives at risk. By overturning 50 years of precedent, safe and vital abortion care is now virtually inaccessible to millions of people who need it. In the weeks and months ahead, we will see the devastating impact this ruling will have on human lives.This egregious decision is a direct violation of both our American values and our Jewish tradition. Reversing the protections of Roe defies logic, morality, compassion and the fundamental right of all Americans to practice their religious beliefs without interference from the government. National Council of Jewish Women advocates will not be deterred. We will continue to fight until everyone can make their own faith-informed decision about their bodies, lives, and futures, regardless of who they are or where they live.”

Jamie L. Manson 

President, Catholics for Choice

“While we knew this day was coming, that knowledge does nothing to diminish the gut-wrenching horror that Catholics for Choice feels today. The unconscionable Supreme Court decision to end the constitutional right to abortion is the culmination of a decades-long religious crusade – spearheaded by the U.S. Catholic bishops – to take away a woman’s most fundamental freedoms, namely her ability to control her own fertility and determine her own destiny. This ruling gives right-wing leaders unfettered license to codify fringe religious beliefs into civil law. It is a full-frontal assault on, and is utterly incompatible with, the bedrock American principles of religious freedom and the separation of church and state.  

“The fall of Roe v. Wade will have devastating effects for millions of women and pregnant people across the country. As Catholics, we are taught a theology of social justice. But abortion bans are the opposite of justice. They disproportionately harm people already oppressed by obstacles to accessing healthcare, especially Black people, Indigenous people, and other people of color, those working to make ends meet, women, young people, people with disabilities and complex medical conditions, immigrants, and members of the LGBTQI+ community – the very same marginalized people whom our faith commands us to serve first. I fear that people will die because they can no longer access abortion care – and their blood will be on hands of bishops and the ultra-conservative Catholics who bankrolled this effort. 

No matter what the bishops – or the court – say, our faith is clear: abortion is a human right. In stealing that right, the extremists on the Supreme Court have shown themselves to be wildly out of touch with the views of most Americans and the beliefs of the majority of U.S. Catholics, who polls consistently show support legal abortion in all or most cases. Now more than ever, Congress and the White House must act where the courts have failed and protect the rights of women and pregnant people once and for all.   

On this terrible day we mourn, we grieve, we rage alongside all our fellow Americans who believe in the basic right of all people to determine their own sexual and reproductive futures. But we fight on. And we will not stop.  

“Compelled by our faithfully-formed consciences and guided by our Catholic values, we will fight until this abominable and unjust ruling is overruled and the fundamental right to abortion is once again the law of the land.”

Rabbi Jill Jacobs

CEO of T’ruah

“Reproductive freedom is a Jewish value. According to Jewish law, abortion is not only permitted in at least some circumstances, but even required if the life of the pregnant person is at risk. Today’s ruling ignores the First Amendment right for Jews to practice their religion without government interference, and will also have life threatening implications for millions of Americans, primarily low-income people of color, by giving states the power to revoke essential health care from nearly half the population. 

“Abortion-related deaths are rare in countries where abortion is legal, accessible, and performed early by skilled providers. Yet with bans on most abortions in many states, potential criminal penalties for those who seek abortion or assist others in doing so, along with unnecessary waiting periods, ultrasounds and other barriers, patients no longer have access to essential health care. 

“Pregnant people will now be forced into giving birth or in some cases will lose their lives, due to the financial, legal, health, and personal limitations imposed by this decision. We will see people arrested and imprisoned for seeking essential health care, and we can expect a rise in the horrifying specter of those who have suffered miscarriages and stillbirths being criminally charged as well. 

“T’ruah, along with our partners in the reproductive health and justice spaces, will remain steadfast in supporting the right of people to make their own decisions about their bodies, lives, and futures. We call on the Biden administration to take action where the Senate failed and to ensure equal access to abortion nationwide. This is a necessary step forward for racial justice, for abortion justice, and for religious freedom for all.”

Rev. Dr. Susan Smith

Crazy Faith Ministries

Columbus, OH

“The infrastructure of this country – that which was cracked from the beginning – is slowly, methodically, and deliberately destroying the very principles that have been touted as the jewels of American democracy for decades. The people in power have no regard for the “rights” of all people. The overturn of Roe v Wade speaks to that truth. They are taking us backwards, eliminating the rights of even the women they say they have been “protecting” for decades from Black men. This ruling by the US Supreme Court speaks to the widening of the cracks that were baked into the founding documents of this country, and these cracks are not fixable. As women suffer because of this law, the powers that be will laugh and continue to ship away at the rights of all of us. We are not safe, not even those who think they are. This is a sad day for this country.”

Rev. Lesley Jones

Truth and Destiny United Church of Christ

Cincinnati, OH

“The overturning of Roe v. Wade is an unconscionable and immoral act by the Supreme Court. It has criminalized and made unsafe an abortion procedure. It has created another inequity for those who are already the most marginalized in our society: women, Blacks, and poor people.”

Rev. Laura Young

United Methodist Church

Westerville, OH

“The egregious ruling that overturns Roe and Casey effectively enshrines into law a narrow and relatively new Christian religious view not held by the majority of U.S. citizens. The majority of abortions are obtained by people identifying as Christian; the majority of Christians in this country support abortion. This ruling does not reflect the reality of health care needs among all people who may become pregnant. Overturning Roe is the judicial branch legislating a minority religious belief. This ruling is wrong if we hope to be a free county and treat all citizens equally under the law and support every person’s right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

Rabbi Lindsey Danziger and Rabbi Rick Kellner

Ohio Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism 

Columbus, OH

“Today is a tragic day for our country, a devastating day for our souls and a disastrous day for women. The sin of God manipulation has been committed. No one’s religious beliefs should ever be the law for all. For nearly 2,000 years Jewish tradition has supported a women’s right to an abortion and in some cases requires it. The Jewish faith teaches that life begins at birth. Our tradition commands that we prioritize the life of a Jewish pregnant individual over the life of a fetus. Today’s Supreme Court ruling infringes on the First Amendment Rights of American Jews to practice our religion. Our community will continue fighting to ensure pregnant individuals can access the medical care they need.”

Rev. Dr. John C. Dorhauer

General Minister and President, United Church of Christ

Cleveland, OH

“This is a moral outrage. The Court has signaled they are beholden to religious zealots with a clear minority status over the rights of women. I fear what awaits us now that by his court has shown its willingness to represent that religious minority and cast aside constitutionally protected human rights. As a Christian leader I want to clearly state that their use of religion to end these rights for women is neither Christian nor defensible and threatens to undermine the establishment clause that underpins our Democracy.”

Rev. Ray Greene Jr.

Executive Director, The Freedom BLOC

Akron, OH

“God has granted each human being ‘free will’ and with a stroke of a pen, men have destroyed that right for a woman to make decisions on their own lives for their own health. As a Man of God and a father of seven daughters, I am appalled and distraught at the arrogance and evilness of the Supreme Court to negate what God has made law!”

Rev. Dan Clark (he/him)

Ohio Director, Faith in Public Life

Newark, OH

“My faith teaches me that every person has inherent dignity and worth because they are made in the image of God. This includes the moral agency to make decisions for one’s own life. Yet today a group of extremist judges on the Supreme Court have stripped the American people of the right to seek abortion healthcare. Their agenda, rooted in white Christian nationalism, is an unholy threat to freedom and flourishing. But I know that more than 60% of every religious and ethnic group except for white evangelicals opposed overturning Roe v. Wade, so I hope and pray that our state lawmakers will be responsive and accountable to the people, rather than legislate their minority religious views.”

Dr. Tarunjit Singh Butalia

Sikh Educational and Religious Foundation

Dublin, OH

“As a central Ohio faith leader, I am deeply disappointed with the Supreme Court’s dangerous decision about mandating reproductive decisions of women. If this ruling stands and Congress does not enshrine the right to abortion in the law, male dominated state legislatures will further penalize our daughters, wives, sisters and mothers.”

Rev. Dr. David Long-Higgins

Conference Minister, Heartland Conference, United Church of Christ

Delaware, OH

“For many years the General Synod of the United Church of Christ has affirmed the rights and moral agency of women when it comes to determining decisions related to their own bodies.  This has always included the right to the difficult decision which at times results in abortion.   Today’s decision by the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade stands in stark contradiction to this affirmation of women having the right to full decision-making when it comes to their own bodies and their lives. We will continue to work for the full reinstatement of these rights while at the same time working to be sure women have access to the full range of health care they deserve.”

Rev. Nelson Pierce

Beloved Community Church

Cincinnati, OH

“For decades now, the truth and love of the Christian church has been corrupted by hatred, greed and violence. This has had a corrosive impact on the soul of the church and a corrupting effect on society. The overturning of Roe v. Wade, and the role that Christianity has played in it is a time for weeping, not a time for rejoicing. It is far past time for the church to shake off the shackles of white supremacy so that we can usher in a revival of love and justice.”

Rev. Dr. Tim Ahrens

Senior Minister, First Congregational Church

Columbus, OH

“Fifty years of hope is dashed by the pen of a man who can’t articulate the law and the majority of a court who can’t see beyond their political right leaning.”

Sensei Glenn Ge Jie Gustafson

Sensei, Central Ohio Center for Pragmatic Buddhism

Columbus, OH

“Buddhist teaching tells us to avoid the taking of life in any form; however, science is unclear on a definitive moment when life begins. Until recently even the Judeo-Christian tradition maintained that life did not begin until the first breath. Today we fully support the autonomy of women to make the difficult decisions on what to do in the case of pregnancy. We hope that they will consult with appropriate others, but ultimately the decision is theirs. It is not the place of the court or government to define life, nor to strip women of the autonomy to control their own bodies.” 

Pastor Hank Osmundson (he/him)

Executive Director, Unitarian Universalist Justice Ohio

Columbus, OH

“A society that values every one of its members is one that bolsters their freedoms and supports the choices that allow them to thrive. Human dignity and a recognition of inherent worth demand that people be allowed to make decisions about their own lives, families and futures. The Supreme Court’s decision is both immoral and a supreme overreach of the government and religious beliefs into people’s lives. My faith demands that I advocate for all people to live and believe however they wish; not to force them into ways of living that I deem is God’s way. Justice, Love, and Mercy are of the Divine, and they will prevail.”

Pastor Henneman

United Methodist Church for All People

Columbus, OH

“God created women with dignity, value and worth. God blessed women with wisdom and discernment. The action of the Supreme Court has attempted to rob women of the sacredness of their lives, the well-being of their bodies, and the autonomy given by their creator.”

Rev. Kathy Manis Findley
Baptist Minister and Retired Executive Director of Safe Places
Macon, GA

“As a Baptist minister, I grieve the Supreme Court’s ruling that denies access to abortion. In a very real way, this ruling is a harsh message to women and girls about their right to care for their bodies. In my many years of working with sexually abused women and girls, I have observed the devastation of unwanted pregnancy. I will be one faith leader who will stand in solidarity with every woman who needs care and compassion.”

Rev. Martha Spong (she/her)

Pastor, United Church of Christ 

Mechanicsburg, PA

“When I, as a 30-year-old mother of two, made the decision to seek an abortion, I had the support of my doctor and the privilege to receive safe and legal reproductive healthcare. I also had the support of my pastor and members of my faith community. This is the world I want for my children and grandchildren, in which every person has moral autonomy and access to communal care and compassion. Today the Supreme Court snatches that freedom from us, and we know the impact will be greater on people already marginalized by gender, race, and economic status. I deplore the Court’s decision and grieve with all whose lives will be harmed by it.” 

Rev. Nathan Empsall (he/him)

Executive Director, Faithful America

New Haven, CT

“Striking down Roe v. Wade is a sin. Control of one’s own body is a sacred, God-given right, and the Supreme Court’s devastating decision attacks the health and freedom of millions of pregnant Americans. The religious right does not represent the majority of American Christians on abortion, and this heartbreaking ruling is an all-out assault on the religious freedom of people whose support for reproductive choice is rooted in our faith. For 50 years, anti-choice conservative leaders have waged war on reproductive rights and abortion access not because they care about life, religious freedom, or women’s health, but because they are singularly obsessed with seizing power no matter who they hurt — and I can think of no greater sin.”

Dr. Robert Taber (he/him)

National Director, Latter-day Saints for Biden-Harris

Fayetteville, NC

“We need to trust women to make decisions about abortion and birth control that are right for them. As Latter-day Saints, while we have a diversity of personal and public policy views, we know that sometimes terminating a pregnancy is what must be done—not only according to the General Handbook but the experiences of many. Almost all of us have loved ones who wouldn’t be alive today if they hadn’t been able to receive necessary medical support and expertise. Access to abortion is a matter of religious liberty for us and what any society should provide as part of promoting reproductive health, safe pregnancy, and family outcomes. Our experience has taught us what happens whenever politicians exercise unrighteous dominion. Unfortunately, broad swathes of the Republican Party have embraced Christian Nationalists who will continue to prioritize their own extreme agenda over the well-being and personal conscience of Latter-day Saints and our neighbors. The path forward is clear: trust and empower women and elect leaders who will stand up for quality healthcare and freedom for all Americans.”

Rev. Angela Tyler-Wiliams

Co-Director for Movement Building, SACReD

New York, NY

We at SACReD believe that affordable access to all forms of reproductive healthcare, including abortion, is a moral and social good that enables equality and the well-being of all people. Conversely, state bans on abortion amount to forced gestation and birth and are, therefore, morally barbaric. Such laws, which the Dobbs ruling will now allow to proliferate, violate the most basic human rights to bodily autonomy, reproductive dignity, and moral agency. Further, the bans’ disproportionate burdens on Black people and other people of color call to mind historical atrocities committed against enslaved and other colonized women. SACReD is working to engage in faith-based culture change to empower congregations to become loving, justice-seeking faith communities that fully support the fulfillment of reproductive moral agency and flourishing for all – join us!

“To those with moral concerns about abortion, we point out that male fertilization does not equal procreation. Rather, conception is only the beginning of a long procreative process,” Angela Tyler-Williams, SACReD’s Co-Director for Movement Building, said. “Women and others with the capacity to gestate need liberation from patriarchal theologies that erase and devalue their enormous role, and necessary consent, in matters of reproduction.”

Rev. Dr. Katharine Henderson (she/her) 

Interim President and CEO, Interfaith Alliance

“As a Christian faith leader I have sat with women as they wrestle with complicated decisions about abortion as I have done myself. The Dobbs ruling today represents an egregious overreach by a court that has been unduly influenced by religious extremists. They have taken away our God given right to choose that disproportionately falls on those least able to sustain the consequences. How absurd that a court that upholds the right to carry a gun in public would strike down a constitutional right for pregnant people to make decisions about their own bodies.”

The Rev. Dr. Russell L. Meyer

Executive Director, Florida Council of Churches

Tampa, FL

The genius of America is the recognition of unalienable rights that the Declaration of Independence proclaims and that the Constitution exists to protect for the people. The unnamed right to privacy is wholly implied in the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, for without privacy no one can enjoy those three named rights. The Ninth Amendment codified all unnamed unalienable rights in saying, “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.” The Supreme Court shirked its duty to correct Roe v. Wade by establishing it upon foundational principles. Being a true right, privacy cannot be taken from us, only suppressed and oppressed. In its decision today the Supreme Court has suppressed an unalienable right to privacy and told the states that they may oppress the people if they wish. This is an action of a Catholic-oriented court using sectarian doctrine, not the Constitution, to deny what is unalienable. To be sure, the people will recover their use of what cannot be alienated from them. That is the liberty which we celebrate on July 4th and the reason why this ruling will eventually be overturned.”

Phillip Baber

Pastor,  The People’s Church of Jacksonville

Jacksonville, FL

“For decades, certain politicians have strategically allied themselves with reactionary church leaders sympathetic to the goals of Empire, using their narrow, extremist, and often shockingly inept Biblical exegesis to misrepresent God’s position on a woman’s right to choose. The high court’s ruling in Roe v. Wade (1973) rightly curtailed the State’s attempt to control the bodies and destinies of women through thinly veiled legislation designed to codify deeply misogynistic ecclesiastical edicts. The overturning of Roe signals the beginning of a chilling new chapter in the story of America, a great leap backwards. It is therefore incumbent upon all of us—but especially people of faith—to resist the creep of fascism, especially when it slithers toward us quoting Biblical proof texts”.

Rev. Dr. Joe Parramore

Chief Executive Presbyter, New Journey Ministries 

Quincy, FL

“The scriptures are abundantly clear that Jesus affirmed the moral agency of women. This simply means that Jesus trusted women to make their own decisions. 

The decision of SCOTUS to restrict women’s right to health care, a decision that should be made between her and her physician is reprehensible. This far-right ideology of “save them in the womb, just to kill them in a classroom” is unconsciousable. If there has ever been a time where communities of faith need to stand on the wall and take their watch, it’s now!  What’s next!”

Rev. Terri Steed Pierce 

Sr. Pastor of JoyMCC

Orlando, FL

“The Supreme Court has overturned a ruling that has been in place for 50 years.  What a sad day for America. This ruling will affect the marginalized and poor far more than the privileged.  My prayers are with those who will be negatively impacted by such a ruling that perverts the freedom upon which this country was supposedly built.   I’ll keep fighting.  The arc is long but it bends toward Justice”. —

Min. Shavonne D Williams 

Georgia Organizing Ambassador, Faith in Public Life

Augusta, GA

“Today’s decision by the Supreme Court was devastating to me and rolls back decision-making autonomy that is inherently given to everyone by God. As a clergy and a retired physician’s assistant, I know the decision to start or expand your family is sacred and personal. It should be made with healthcare providers; there is no room for politics to be in the mix.

The court’s ruling will disproportionately harm Black and Brown people, especially those experiencing poverty or without the means to travel for necessary care. Here in Georgia, it is very dangerous to be pregnant – especially to be Black and pregnant. Black maternal mortality is twice that of white counterparts. 

Georgians need our elected officials to work together with us to create safe and healthy communities where we can all raise families that thrive. That means focusing on policies that improve our health instead of cutting off access to care. They must expand Medicaid to cover 500,000 Georgians who lack access to affordable healthcare. They must reopen closed hospitals in rural Georgia, where lack of emergency care is a crisis. Focusing on the health needs of all Georgians, not cutting off access to abortion care, is how we walk out our charge to love our neighbor. This should be our elected officials’ top priority.”

Rev. Dr. Donny D. Green

Senior Pastor, Bibleway Missionary Baptist Church

Albany, GA 

“As a pastor, husband and father, I believe the fundamental freedom to make decisions regarding healthcare including reproductive care lies with the individual and their physician, not within the walls of our government. The overturn of Roe. vs. Wade violates these values and has far-reaching negative healthcare consequences across the nation. 

As a pastor in Southwest Georgia, I witness the disparities in healthcare access on a daily basis that adversely impact communities of color. The Supreme Court’s ruling today will further harm communities of color, particularly in rural Georgia where access to healthcare is affected by geographical and financial factors.

I call for our elected officials to focus on policies to enhance the lives of all Georgians  instead of limiting a person’s freedom to make decisions concerning abortion care and starting or expanding their family.

My faith teaches unconditional love for our neighbor and all of God’s creation. The decisions made by the justices and our elected officials have been rooted in the love for power instead of people.”

Zakiya Jackson

President of The Expectations Project

“Today we lament the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade because this assault on women’s bodily autonomy is also dangerous for children. This decision will have widespread and devastating consequences for women and others needing access to abortion and other reproductive health care. People at the margins – most especially Black women, trans people, and people victimized by poverty – of our society suffer the most when policies and legal rulings restrict or deny our basic right to bodily autonomy as a part of our collective work for liberation.” 

Jeanné Lewis 

CEO of Faith in Public Life
“Today is a day of heartbreak, outrage and injustice. Across faiths and across race a clear majority of Americans oppose overturning Roe v Wade, but five judges ended the constitutional protection of our freedom to decide if, when, and how to grow our families regardless of where we live. We all have God-given dignity, and we are created to live in respectful relationship with one another. Access to abortion care honors these values; criminalizing people who access or provide abortion does not.

The challenges of this moment run even deeper than questions of legal rights. Reproductive justice, not just reproductive choice, is what God desires for all of us. We deserve systems and policies that enable us to raise children in safe, sustainable, healthy communities where everyone thrives. 

The impact of today’s immoral ruling will be measured in deaths, incarceration and life-altering trauma, as 13 states already have trigger ban laws on the books, and 26 states in total are likely to deprive people of abortion access. Many of these states already harm and punish mothers, children and families with policies that deny them healthcare, trap them in poverty, and rob them of opportunity and freedom. These compounding injustices most severely impact the communities always harmed the most by unjust policies: Black, Brown, Native and Asian people, LGBTQ folks, people with low incomes, and immigrants. Pregnant women in this country die needlessly from complications every single day, and Black women die in childbirth at almost three times the rate of white women. And today, America became an even more dangerous place to be pregnant. These grievous inequities will only deepen as states with conservative governors and diverse populations make abortion care a crime. 

Whatever our personal opinions on abortion, we should be able to agree that a pregnant person’s moral judgment about their unique needs, not fear of prosecution, should drive decisions about our health and our families. 

Today is heartbreaking, but injustice never has the last word. People of faith will work without ceasing to replace oppressive policies with just laws, accompany our neighbors through painful days, and pour a balm of reproductive justice into the wounds opened by the courts and by misguided politicians.”

Rev. Jennifer Butler

Founder in Residence, Faith in Public Life

“People of faith are crying out: how long must we endure the injustice of judges denying our moral autonomy and our freedom to control our own lives?

Our decisions about accessing abortion care are nuanced, personal and moral. As a pastor, I have walked with loved ones as they carefully and prayerfully made personal decisions about seeking abortion care. We deserve the grace and space to discern what we need for our health, our bodies and our families. Whatever our opinions on abortion, surely we can agree that jailing a woman or a health care provider for exercising their moral judgment in the moment is wrong. These punitive measures will be aimed disproportionately at Black, Brown, Native and Asian women, LGBTQ people, immigrants and low-income people – compounding the injustice. Our faith traditions teach us to have compassion on those who face difficult situations, not punish them.

In the aftermath of today’s unjust ruling, we must come together and bear one another’s burdens. The vast majority of people of faith support access to legal abortion care. We must do everything in our power to ensure that pregnant people who face immediate risk to their health and freedom are respected and protected, and in the long term we must keep pressing forward until every person in this country has the care and safety they need to thrive.

Mollie Wilson O’Reilly 

Catholic mother and Commonweal magazine editor-at-large

“Catholic leaders have spent decades fighting to end abortion, and insisting all the time that they were fighting for the good of women and babies alike. But they didn’t prepare, we didn’t prepare, for the reality of how taking away access to reproductive care would put women’s lives in danger…and the anti-abortion movement didn’t advocate consistently for the kinds of policies that would make it easier for women in difficult circumstances to carry their pregnancies to term. Now women will suffer and women will die as a result of this decision, and I’m really afraid our Church leaders will just keep on ignoring that reality.”

Natalia Imperatori-Lee

Professor of religious studies at Manhattan College

“A majority of Catholics recognize that criminalizing abortion does not help the poor and vulnerable in our society. This ruling will endanger lives, especially those of poor women of color. We can trust women to make moral decisions about their lives.” 

Therese Lysaught

Professor at the Neiswanger Institute for Bioethics and Health Care Leadership and the Institute for Pastoral Studies at Loyola University Chicago

“This ruling makes it clear that the ‘pro-life’ movement’s goal all along has more to do with revoking women’s agency, it has never truly been about life: it has simply sought to overturn Roe with little attempt to practically address the root causes of abortion. It has never been about creating a context where children are cared for and nurtured as part of the common good. Poor women, women of color and their babies continue to die at a rate of three times that of white women and children. This decision will exacerbate those realities while providing one more tool for criminalizing and disenfranchising poor women of color. Catholic leadership in the United States has fomented a deeply problematic either-or understanding of a very complex issue. In their idolatrous focus on this one legal decision, they have supported astonishingly shoddy legal and historical reasoning. What they didn’t realize—or maybe they did—was that Catholic anti-Roe activists have been complicit in the wider neoliberal project of dismantling governmental institutions. The Dobbs decision is not about human life; it’s one tactic in a broader strategy of hijacking established constitutional, judicial processes that are necessary for sustaining a robust, democratic polity and the common good.”

Steven P. Millies

Professor of public theology at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago and author of Good Intentions: A History of Catholic Voters’ Road from Roe to Trump

“The Court’s decision falls hardest on poor women who can’t afford to travel and young women, especially from communities of color, without options or access to pregnancy care while still others who can get abortions will get abortions. This Constitution is meant to be shared by a diverse people who hold different views, including about when life begins. It doesn’t belong only to Catholics or other Christians. With this decision, the Court sacrifices precedent and the integrity of a legal system that protects the common good to reward a 50-year-long pressure campaign’s single-minded, single-issue culture war. Now partisanship has won in the Supreme Court, the brakes are off the wheels, and no one is better off.” 

M.T. Davila

Visiting associate professor of practice at Merrimack College and a past president of the Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians of the United States

“The impact of this decision on vulnerable populations of people who can become pregnant will be extensive. Reproductive health care, which includes a range of care besides the termination of a viable pregnancy, will be significantly reduced in geographic areas where access and public attitudes toward women’s and other gender minorities’ health, especially for Black and Brown persons, follows the dehumanizing ideologies of our racist and sexist past. I encourage Catholics, and all people of faith on different sides of this issue, to engage in the hard work of establishing relationships, alliances and coalitions across diverse perspectives for the benefit of all persons who can become pregnant and every child born. Reproductive justice can’t be divorced from racial, gender, economic, migrant and other forms of justice. As we work to serve the common good, let’s move beyond the simplistic binary of ‘pro-life’ and ‘pro-choice’ labels. Now is the time to reject that binary, work across divides, and focus on communities most impacted by this harmful ruling.”


Faith in Public Life is a national movement of clergy and faith leaders united in the prophetic pursuit of justice, equality and the common good. Together, with a network of over 50,000 leaders, they are leading the fight to advance just policies at the state and federal level that affirm our values and the human dignity of all.

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