Voting members declined by a 748-154 vote to
tamper with the ELCA social statement on abortion adopted eight years
ago at the 1991 Churchwide Assembly.
That statement supports legal, publicly funded abortion if the fetus has "lethal abnormalities incompatible with life" and opposes abortion after viability of the fetus "except when the mother's life is threatened or when lethal abnormalities indicate the prospective newborn will die very soon." The defeated amendment proposed removing that language.
The proposal was among various social issues brought to the assembly as "memorials" from synod assemblies. Voting on them, the assembly:
• Supported international debt reduction and the ELCA's participation in the Jubilee 2000: USA Campaign, which seeks to forgive the debt of poor nations (929-29).
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