As Christians, we face battles on many fronts in our society. Not only do we confront our own personal battles to remain pure and “unstained by the world,” but there are many who are angered by our obedience to scripture, especially in the arena of morality, and will do all they can to trip us up.
New Jersey state law clearly says: “No person shall be required to perform or assist in the performance of an abortion or sterilization.” Federal law (at least for now) prohibits hospitals that receive federal funds from requiring their employees from assisting with abortion. In spite of all that, the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey ordered all of their nurses to either perform abortion-related services or face termination of their employment.
Fe Vinoya is the spokesperson for a group of twelve nurses employed by the hospital who are striking back. She stated that suddenly in October of this year the hospital she had been working at for years ordered her and other nurses to assist with the abortions being done in their Same Day Surgery unit. When she expressed her objection, she was told that the hospital had “no regard for her religious convictions and that she must assist.” In order to protect their jobs, the nurses hired an attorney from the Alliance Defense Fund.
Formed in 1994, the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) is, in their words: “a legal alliance defending the right to hear and speak the Truth through strategy, training, funding, and direct litigation. We defend Our First Liberty – religious freedom – by empowering our allies, recognizing that together we can accomplish far more than we can alone.” Defending cases such as this one is the reason they exist.
Their ADF attorney, Matthew Bowman, was able to get a federal judge to issue a temporary restraining order prohibiting the firings on November 3rd. The case is scheduled for federal court on December 5. In spite of all this, the hospital has not backed down. They told the media that they were not compelling anyone to violate their religious beliefs, but the nurses have testified that this is a lie. In a press conference yesterday, Fe Vinoya stated: “We and our attorneys have repeatedly asked the hospital not to force us to provide services on abortion cases, and the hospital has repeatedly said it will not back down and that we are required to assist.”
This hospital’s brazen defiance of the law makes me wonder where all this stems from. Do they feel emboldened by ObamaCare to think that they can mandate this for their workers? The present administration has not made any secret of the fact that they think that medical workers should be forced to perform and assist with abortion. Many physicians have already found themselves losing their hospital rights or their practices because of a refusal to refer women to others for their abortion. Requiring them to actually perform the deadly procedure is just a simple step from there.
I fully predict that this is just the beginning of this type of battle, especially in left-leaning states with a strong pro-abortion sentiment, like New Jersey. I am glad to see the nurses at this hospital fighting back in such a vigorous manner. An overwhelming victory is needed or this problem will quickly become an epidemic.
One of the encouraging aspects of this story is that I would imagine that the hospital began requiring their nurses to assist with abortions because they were having a problem finding enough nurses to volunteer for the duty. The same is true for the pressure to have medical students learn how to do them: it is a loathsome and terrible task, and there are not nearly enough men and women willing to take it on. And, pro-life sentiment is on the rise!
I will keep my eyes posted for more updates on this story. Please pray for these courageous nurses who desire to heal and not destroy. No one should ever be coerced to do such an odious and murderous task against their will. In fact, no one should ever do it to begin with! In the midst of this battle, we must just continue to fight each skirmish with the truth and integrity, never allowing evil to win!
Keeping it true! Barb