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Just 1/3 of churchgoers say they notice their congregation supporting crisis pregnancy centers

Despite the growing need for crisis pregnancy centers following the Dobbs decision by the U.S. Supreme Court last summer, a new Lifeway Research survey found that only 31 percent of Protestant churchgoers have observed any congregational support for these centers since the ruling.

crisis centers“In a survey of Americans conducted days before the Dobbs decision was leaked, almost two-thirds of Americans agreed churches and religious organizations have a responsibility to increase support for women who have unwanted pregnancies if their state restricts access to abortion,” said Scott McConnell, executive director of Lifeway Research “According to those who attend, the majority of Protestant churches in the United States are not supporting a pregnancy resource center that exists either separately or as part of their church.”

The survey detailed various levels of support provided by churches that are involved: 16 percent of churchgoers reported financial support from their churches to local centers; 14 percent noted encouragement within their congregations to financially support these centers; and another 14 percent were encouraged to refer individuals facing unplanned pregnancies to these centers. In addition, 11 percent of respondents indicated that their churches had promoted volunteerism at these centers, and 7 percent had hosted leaders from the centers to speak at church services.

Awareness and involvement vary significantly across different demographics and denominations, according to the survey. Younger churchgoers, particularly those under 50, and those attending larger or more evangelical churches are more likely to report their church’s involvement. In contrast, those over 65 and members of smaller or Lutheran congregations are less aware of any church engagement with pregnancy resource centers.

Churchgoers in the Northeast are more likely than those in other regions to report no nearby pregnancy resource centers, and Lutheran churchgoers frequently mention a lack of nearby centers compared to other denominations.

“There is equal opportunity for all churches to point those with unintended pregnancies to help if there is a Christian pregnancy resource center nearby,” said McConnell. “Yet few churches are doing so in a way their congregation notices.”

–Dwight Widaman | Metro Voice

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