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National Council of Churches Adopts Policies on Human Biotechnology

Genetic Crossroads
January 26th, 2007

At its annual General Assembly meeting in November, the National Council of Churches USA adopted an important policy document on human biotechnology titled Fearfully and Wonderfully Made. 248 delegates from 35 member Christian denominations also unanimously passed resolutions calling for a worldwide ban on human reproductive cloning and for regulatory oversight of bio-warfare weapons being developed at government and private sector laboratories.

From Fearfully and Wonderfully Made:

Our churches are united in opposing cloning for human reproduction, and in wanting safeguards for "regenerative" medicine… We resist scientific reductionism and religious fundamentalism, each absolutist in its own way…

Advances in biotechnologies are coming by the day, often in hands of enormously powerful commercial interests. It is not our duty ever to obstruct genuine progress in science, but it is our duty to recommend what measures we see that would help that progress be genuine. Scientific progress must, in our view, also be situated in a context of democratic governance, where distorting inequities-notable in the US healthcare system-can be addressed…Without an awareness of current injustices in our culture and others, any advance in therapeutic (much less reproductive) biotechnologies threatens to enlarge current social divisions and create new ones.


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