Top U.S. Evangelical Leader: All Involved with IVF Responsible for “Vast Human Tragedy”

A leader of the evangelical movement in the United States recently came down hard on the effects of in vitro fertilization on his blog, decrying the destruction of millions of embryos for the sake of IVF.

Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr., president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, the primary school of the Southern Baptist Convention and one of the largest seminaries in the world, called the destruction of embryos in IVF a tragedy, after reading a report in the London Times that over one million human embryos have been killed in IVF procedures (See LifeSiteNews coverage:

"Human embryos are being produced, almost factory-like, and then routinely destroyed or indefinitely frozen," he observed. "This phenomenon might be described as an unintended complication of the IVF technology.  Nevertheless, all involved in this technology are responsible for this vast human tragedy, intended or not."

"Far too many evangelicals seem to turn a blind eye to this reality," he continued.  "While we celebrate the birth of a child and the gift of life, we cannot blind ourselves to the harsh and grotesque reality that this technology also means the destruction of human life. Many evangelicals fail to see what many proponents of human embryonic stem cell research have noted – a glaring inconsistency in condemning the destruction of human embryos through stem cell research, while ignoring or dismissing the destruction of embryos in IVF clinics."

Dr. Mohler has been recognized by such influential publications as Time and Christianity Today as a leader among American evangelicals. called him the "reigning intellectual of the evangelical movement in the U.S."

Mohler hosts a daily live nationwide radio program on the Salem Radio Network., and is a leader in the Southern Baptist Convention. He has served in several offices, including a term as Chairman of the SBC Committee on Resolutions, which is responsible for the denomination's official statements on moral and doctrinal issues.

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  • Guest

    Is this number 6 o7 on the slippery slope that began in the 30's when the ecclesial communities bought the idea that artificial contraception was A okay with God? Is there a difference in the severity of sin if you contracept a child out of exixtence, or create him/her in a petri dish?

    "Do not try to please everybody. Try to please God , the angels, and the saints. These are your public. If you are afraid of other people's opinion, you should not have become Christian." St John Vianney

  • Guest

    A while back, there was some discussion in Catholic circles regarding the morality of "adopting" these embryos (having them emplanted in the womb of the adoptive mother). To my knowledge, there has been no definitive teaching on this … Can anyone enlighten me if this is not the case? Please direct me to sources — not simply give your own opinion. Thanks!

    Heidi Hess Saxton Editor, "Canticle" Magazine Blogroll

  • Guest

    I don't have the time right now to dig into it, but I think this article on Catholics United for the Faith may give sources to look further into the discussion:

    Frozen Embryos and Embryo Adoption

  • Guest

    Go my Baptist brothers.  Remind the world that Christ loves us all.  Weak and unable to talk does not make a Child of God less than Christ's child.

    GK – God is good!

  • Guest

    Thanks for the info, lpioch. Heidi, please let us know what you discover…that looks like it will take awhile to sort out.

  • Guest

    From what I understand of the whole process of IVF (based on what people who have gone through it have told me), it sounds very demeaning to the couple.  It really sounds like a deal with the devil to me.  I'm glad to hear more speak out against it.

  • Guest

    A sibling of mine was involved in IVF.  It was a tough way to go.  Eventually they adopted two wonderful kids.  The mom ended up holding one of her own babies for 2 hours while her baby died (she was born at 5 or 6 months).  Wow that is tough!  I love this woman, she is salt of the earth.  And all the preparations and second guessing during the IVF procedures.  Oh mama mia!

    GK – God is good!

  • Guest

    We should welcome our separated brethren into the light of truth.

    The Church rightly condemned IVF when it was legalized  in the 1980s. The majority of well-meaning non-Catholic Christians, without the benefit of a teaching office, did not see any harm in IVF.

    In fact, I believe there was a NYT piece at the time by an outspoken liberal pundit who welcomed the legalization of IVF and addressed voices concerned about human embryos coming to harm with words to the effect that, of course such a thing was not going to happen, and even if it did, which it wouldn't, the practice would stop. Of course!

    It reminds me of Mark Shea's two-step summary of human history:

    1. What could it hurt?

    2. How were we supposed to know?

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