A pro-life group has released its first list of Christian colleges and universities in the United States that have ties to Planned Parenthood.
On Wednesday, Students for Life of America announced in a press release the preliminary findings of its ongoing investigation into more than 700 Christian colleges and universities across the U.S., which found that as many as 100 have "quiet relationships" with Planned Parenthood that "fly under the radar.”
The first list names 23 colleges that partner with the abortion giant in some form. Two schools that were on the initial list of 25 have since severed ties with the nation's largest abortion business.
Christian colleges found to have relationships with Planned Parenthood in Students for Life's first wave of research include: four Catholic institutions, five Lutheran schools, six universities affiliated with the United Methodist Church, two Methodist institutions, two colleges affiliated with the Presbyterian Church, one Methodist Episcopal university, one university affiliated with the United Church of Christ, one university affiliated with the Disciples of Christ, and a theological seminary affiliated with the Reformed Church in America.
Students for Life also provides a map of the U.S. showing the locations of colleges and universities that have ties to Planned Parenthood. The map will be updated as more institutions of higher learning are added or removed.
The types of connections Christian colleges' were found to have with Planned Parenthood include such things as " ... advertising Planned Parenthood internships and career postings; referring students to Planned Parenthood as a resource; incorporating Planned Parenthood into medical school rotations; and hosting events for students with the abortion giant.”
“There is an unholy partnership between a number of Christian schools and the abortion industry,” said Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life.
“We want to equip pro-life advocates to take action and encourage schools to disentangle themselves from Big Abortion," she added. "It is crucial that colleges and universities that claim an affiliation with the Christian faith and biblical values do not contradict those values by partnering with or promoting perpetrators of abortion violence.”
In an interview with The Christian Post, Hawkins explained that, surprisingly, many Christian colleges are hostile to the idea of a Students for Life group on campus.
“The hardest places for us to start a Students for Life group is often on a private school campus and particularly Christian school campuses where … we don’t have the same First Amendment rights as you would on a public school to be able to a launch a Students for Life, pro-life group on campus.”
“We have to make the case to Christian schools why we need to have a Students for Life,” she added. “The majority of women who seek an abortion are self-proclaimed Christians. … There are abortion facilities, 600 of them operating in the United States, many of them are across the street or within neighborhoods of an active church or parish. So Christians need to speak out against the atrocity of abortion.”
Hawkins told CP that Students for Life has worked to make the colleges aware of their relationships with Planned Parenthood and asked them to cut ties with the organization.
Two of the 25 colleges identified as having relationships with Planned Parenthood in the first released list and then decided to cut their ties with the abortion giant were Messiah College and St. Francis University, both based in Pennsylvania. The two institutions reversed course “after being contacted by pro-life advocates.”
According to Hawkins, some Christian colleges are openly enthusiastic about their association with Planned Parenthood.
“In some cases, we had situations where the school openly supported Planned Parenthood and the abortion industry and was obstinate in their response to us. And that to me, I think, was the most surprising,” she recalled.
Hawkins specifically mentioned a correspondence Students for Life had with the campus minister of a college in Minnesota, who talked about “how much she supported Planned Parenthood and a woman’s right to have an abortion, and they were proud to be partners with Planned Parenthood on campus.”
The list of colleges with ties to Planned Parenthood is just the first of several more to be released by the organization in the coming months.
Hawkins said there will be “two more waves of schools” before the Students for Life Institute for Pro-Life Advancement publishes a “full report on the schools found to have ties with Planned Parenthood” later this year, most likely in August or September.