Voices For Life

Voices for Life is an e-publication dedicated to informing and educating the public on pro-life and pro-family issues. We cover issues from conception until natural death, as well as all family life issues.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

This Pastor’s Church is Refusing to Obey California’s Mandate That It Pay for Abortions

Jim Garlow - Alliance Defending Freedom
Pastor Garlow testifies to Members of Congress in an Energy
and Commerce Committee Forum, Photo Courtesy Jim Garlow 
By Josh Shepherd
Life News

On July 13, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill known as the Conscience Protection Act—intended to protect the rights of health care providers, churches and other groups that object to participating in abortion. Seated in the House Gallery, one man watched the vote with all the intensity of a general going into war.

Jim Garlow, father of eight children and pastor of Skyline Wesleyan Church in San Diego, California, sat with his wife and a dozen congregants who prayed and discussed events unfolding on the House floor. While others visit the nation’s capital city for summer vacation, this team came with purpose.

Nearly two years ago, Garlow was thrust into a battle with the State of California—when his church objected to a new state mandate involving abortion. Since then, he has found that the pro-choice bias in state and federal government is no casual affair. “They are ruthless,” Garlow says.

Yet his church refuses to bow to the state. Represented by Alliance Defending Freedom, their lawsuit against California is ongoing. In an interview following the House vote, Jim Garlow shares what he testified to Congress, his personal connection with the pro-life cause… and the covert strategy he sees at work in politics today.

Bound4LIFE: What recent events in California led your church to file a lawsuit against the state to defend your pro-life convictions?

Pastor Jim Garlow: On August 22, 2014, some nameless, faceless bureaucrat at the Department of Managed Health Care in Sacramento made a decision by fiat: that every insurance provider in the state of California had to include elective abortion in our plans.

I found out about that decision 60 days later. An attorney who assists us at Skyline Church said, “You’re now covering abortions in your insurance.” I said, “There’s no way.” “No, you are.” “Surely not—we would’ve been notified or something! We would’ve seen this in the media?” I asked our team to follow-up about it and that attorney was right. We were being forced to pay for abortions, and in fact everyone in California is.

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