Churches object to legalizing abortion and euthanasia

POSTED: 08/31/11 1:06 PM

St. Maarten – The Saint Martin United Ministerial Foundation (SMUMF) has reacted negatively to Justice Minister Roland Duncan’s proposal to legalize abortion and euthanasia in St. Maarten. In a statement issued yesterday, pastor Wycliffe Smith and Prophet Edwin Arrindell state that the SMUMF is “opposed to any form of legalization of abortion or euthanasia because we believe that as human beings we are made in the image and likeness of God and as such we affirm the sanctity and the unique value of all human life.”
The foundation maintains that the Bible is its spiritual and moral guideline. “It clearly tells us that murder is wrong. Therefore we condemn the destruction of any human being at any point of his or her life from the point of conception to the point of death.”

SMUMF made its view on these two issues perfectly clear in its meeting with Parliament on March 8. In that meeting pastor Smith said, “Abortion is another issue that is coming down from Holland. At the moment abortion is illegal in St. Maarten. The stand of the church is clear. The deliberate taking of a life, even in its embryonic stage, is murder according to the Word of God.” Concerning euthanasia, SMUMF told Parliament that the “same goes for euthanasia…taking life in one’s own hand and deciding whether someone lives or dies is not man’s decision but God’s decision. He gives life and he takes life.”

SMUMF believes that we must show Christian compassion and offer emotional and practical support to people who are faced with unwanted pregnancies. Further support and help should also be extended to persons who have undergone abortions.

SMUMF noted that Minister Duncan is also considering amending the Penal Code to legalize prostitution. The foundation’s stand on the issue of prostitution is also very clear. In fact, in a meeting with the Executive Council on September 4, 2007, the Saint Martin Council of Churches, the Seventh Day Adventist Church and SMUMF informed the Executive Council in no uncertain terms: “We are against prostitution and we expressed great concern about the many houses of ill repute on St. Maarten which also bring with them female exploitation and human trafficking.”
SMUMF raised these same sentiments in its meeting with Parliament on March 8, pointing out that prostitution and so called “adult entertainment” places are wrong and they lead to female exploitation and human trafficking.

According to the drafter of the changes to the Penal Code, Professor Hans den Doelder, the issues of abortion and euthanasia are completely up to Parliament and the St. Maarten society to decide on, Smith and Arrindell stated. “We believe that now is the time that our Government representatives and our society should stand up and say no to the taking of life at any stage of a human being’s development. Instead, we should promote moral responsibility because, as MP Dr. Ruth Douglas rightly stated, “Without it the laws and special circumstances and conditions would not be effective”. SMUMF is pleased to note that several other members of parliament are also in favor of the right to life.”

The foundation stated that it is calling on the citizens of St. Maarten and the parliamentarians “to take a stand for what is morally right to ensure that our country St. Maarten grows morally and responsibly by protecting the right to life of all our citizens.”

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