Message to Senator Wendy Davis

Right now, State Senator Wendy Davis of Fort Worth is filibustering on the floor of the Texas Senate. I thought you would appreciate reading a part of a message that I just sent to her:

As a United Methodist clergy in Texas, I am horrified by the bill before the Texas Senate.

Years ago now, as a young minister, I had the surreal experience of working with two young women, both of whom were pregnant. Pastoral confidence prevents me from revealing specifics of either situation. However, these two women came to opposite conclusions.

One ended up having an abortion, the other got married. I was honored to do the wedding. I also supported the woman who chose abortion. Surreally, and totally unbeknownst to the other –these women never knew each other– both events happened on the same day.

Both, it seems to me, were the right decisions given these women’s lives. Both, it seems to me, made a good decision for their lives, and made with the help of their families, friends, friends, and faith communities.

This is the heart of what being pro-choice means.

United Methodists stand on all sides of the abortion issue. But, for the information of the Texas Senate, this is some of what the United Methodist Church officially says:

We recognize tragic conflicts of life with life that may justify abortion, and in such cases we support the legal option of abortion…
“We call all Christians to a searching and prayerful inquiry into the sorts of conditions that may cause them to consider abortion. We entrust God to provide guidance, wisdom, and discernment to those facing an unintended pregnancy.

I am troubled by this proposed law, as it seems to me that it will severely limit women’s access to this procedure in many parts of our state, and limit their rights in a way that could bring real harm to them.

Rev. Eric Folkerth
Northaven United Methodist Church,
Dallas Texas

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Eric Folkerth is a minister, musician, author and blogger. He has been Senior Pastor of Northaven United Methodist Church in Dallas, Texas since 2001. During his tenure, church membership has grown almost 30 percent, and a completely new church facility (sanctuary and education building) has been constructed. Northaven is a leading progressive Christian congregation in the Southwest. Northaven is an eclectic collection of gay and straight families, artists, musicians, theater folks, academic theologians, lawyers and judges (go figure), socially conscious community activists, people who don't "check their brain at the door," and a wide array of others who either see it as their "last chance" inside the "institutional church," or their first trip back in decades. Eric is an avid blogger and published author.  Eric is also an award-winning singer-songwriter, who performs throughout Texas and the Southwest. He's an engaging live performer whose first CD was released in 2000. His songs have won honorable mention in both the Billboard and Great American song contests; and he's been a finalist in the 5th Street Festival and South Florida Folk Festival songwriter competitions. Eric is also a leader of Connections, a unique band comprised of United Methodist clergy and layfolk from throughout North Texas. Connections performs "cover shows" of artists like Dan Fogelberg, Chicago, Eagles, Doobie Brothers, Billy Joel, Stevie Wonder, James Taylor and others. Their shows draw crowds of between 300 and 1,000 fans, and they have raised more than $240,000 dollars for worthy charities. Eric has led or co-led hundreds of persons on mission trips around the globe, to places such as Mexico, Haiti, Russia, and Nepal. He has worked with lay persons to build ten homes, and one Community Center, in partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Dallas. He's a popular preacher, and often tackles challenging issues of social justice in his writings and sermons. His wife, Judge Dennise Garcia, is a State District Judge for Dallas, County. As judge of the 303rd Family District Court, she consistently gets high ratings from area lawyers, and was named "best judge" by The Dallas Observer. First elected in 2004, she was the first Latina ever elected to a county-wide bench in Dallas County. She was re-elected for a third term in 2010. They have the world's best daughter, Maria, and an incredible dog, Daisy. (As always, if you like this post, then "like" this on Facebook by clicking the box below, so others can see too...)

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