The Right Rev. Robert Wright, the new Episcopal bishop of the Diocese of Atlanta, has expressed support for the "personhood" amendment to the Georgia constitution, which would define life under state law as beginning at the moment of conception. In a two-part interview with WABE radio in Atlanta, he said: “As someone who was adopted personally and as someone who has adopted, I am grateful, in a profound way, that … my mother, my biological mother, brought me to term, and gave me the opportunity to live the life that I have lived,” he said. “I am grateful to God for that.”

This is the comment I left beneath The Lead's post:

The thing is, life doesn't begin at the moment of conception - it begins well before that. Both sperm and egg are alive and have the potential to become a person. The difference in potential between a separate sperm and egg and sperm and egg joined together is relative. Furthermore, you could argue that life begins way back when the first cell divided in two. When that happened the potential for my birth became real.

Being grateful for someone allowing the potential of one's own personhood to become a reality is highly selective gratitude. What about all the sperm and eggs that did not become Bishop Wright? At the end of the day either we need to accept that "personhood" is about something else other than sex or we need to protect every particle in the universe because every particle in the universe could one day become part of a person (whatever a person is).


TO BE OR NOT TO BE? — 3 Comments

  1. There once was a time when the Church used “ensoulment” as the criteria. And I think this still has value. After all without a soul, the body is a mere automoton. I believe further that ensoulment does not occur until at least the third trimester. OCICBW… But it does not occur at conception, and of that I’m certain.

  2. One of your better efforts, MP (and they’re all good). Short and to the point.

    Would that we had a common-sense prerequisite for ordination to the episcopate!