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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...

A Day at a Time: 'Premature Birth'

By Scott Harrup
Jan. 24, 2010

National Public Radio broadcast a news story last fall on the impact of premature births on the U.S. infant mortality rate. A related Associated Press article noted that “about 1 in 8 U.S. births are premature” and “the U.S. infant mortality rate is higher than in most European countries.”

Thinking back to the broadcast and reading through the online article, I was glad to note the concern of medical professionals and government agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the health of our nation’s babies. But here’s a disturbing reality.

America still aborts more than 1 million babies a year. According to the Guttmacher Institute, “In 2005, 1.21 million abortions were performed, down from 1.31 million in 2000. From 1973 through 2005, more than 45 million legal abortions occurred.”

What would the U.S. infant mortality rate look like if these numbers were part of the equation?

Babies blessed with mothers who want to carry them to term have the support of a U.S. medical network dedicated to ensuring their survival. Should they not survive, they are still considered “babies,” and everyone expresses regret for their deaths. Babies who are tragically aborted, however, are relegated to the status of “fetus,” and their mortality is not even a footnote in the national infant mortality rate.

The CDC’s Marion MacDorman notes in the AP article, “Once the baby [emphasis added] is born too early, we do a good job of saving it. What we have trouble with is preventing the preterm birth in the first place.”

From a pro-life perspective, there are at least another million “preterm births” each year that could be prevented in the first place. Today is Sanctity of Human Life Sunday in the Assemblies of God. In this issue of the Evangel, may you be reminded that God values every life (Psalm 71:6; Isaiah 44:24) and that dedicated followers of Christ — such as the thousands serving with Heartbeat International and in a growing network of pregnancy care centers — are pursuing life-giving ministries around the world.

Scott Harrup

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