Reproductive Justice Library: Rachel Sabbath Initiative

Theological Frameworks

Open Letter to Religious Leaders on Maternal Mortality and Reproductive Justice.

Open Letter to Religious Leaders on Abortion as a Moral Decision

Open Letter to Religious Leaders on Family Planning

 

Online Resources on Family Planning

Expanding Family Planning Options through Partnerships with Faith-Based Organizations (Institute for Reproductive Health, Georgetown University, 2006).  Highlights the importance of the role of religion in family planning in the developing world. Brief summary of the Institute’s collaborations with Catholic, Protestant and Muslim organizations in the developing world to expand family planning options.

ICPD—International Conference on Population and Development (UNFPA).  This collection of resources includes the report from the ICPD in 1994 and subsequent reports on the 10th and 15th anniversaries.

Maternal Mortality: Can We Talk About Sex (at the UN)? This article examines the difficulty of talking about family planning and why the UN must begin to address sexuality.

Remarks on the 15th Anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development  (Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, January 8, 2010).  A major policy speech affirming the U.S. government’s support for international family planning and reproductive health programs.

A Resource Package for Family Planning and Beyond: The ACQUIRE Project (USAID) Digital Archive  The ACQUIRE Project—Access, Quality, and Use in Reproductive Health—was a five-year (2003–2008) global project funded by the USAID to increase the use of reproductive health and family planning services. This archive constitutes ACQUIRE’s legacy and has been designed as a searchable knowledge resource for the reproductive health and family planning community.

 

Books on Family Planning

Good Sex: Feminist Perspectives from the World’s Religions   Patricia Jung, Mary Hunt, and Radhika Balakrishnan, eds. Religion and women’s studies scholars explore how feminists have contributed to the understanding and embodiment of sexuality in a globalized world.

Sacred Choices: The Right to Contraception and Abortion in Ten World Religions   Daniel C. Maguire, ed. A Christian theologian demonstrates how 10 major religious traditions affirm the right to reproductive health.

Sacred Rights: The Case for Contraception and Abortion in World Religions   Daniel C Maguire, ed. Scholars from a range of traditions offer a progressive view of their religion’s views on reproductive health.

Honoring the Body: Meditations on a Christian Practice   Stephanie Paulsell. A primer that weaves together Scripture, history and personal narrative to help individuals create and sustain a joyful relationship with their bodies.

What Men Owe To Women: Men’s Voices from World Religions  John Raines and Daniel C. Maguire.  Male writers from a range of faiths—including Christian, Muslim, Taoist, African and Native American traditions—reassess gender relations within their traditions and identify religious support for the economic and political empowerment of women.

 

Online Resources on Maternal Health and Maternal Mortality

Culture Matters: Lessons from a Legacy of Engaging Faith-based Organizations (United Nations Population Fund, 2008).  A summary of partnerships between UNFPA and faith-based constituencies on reproductive health and population with an assessment of the outcomes, lessons learned and best practices of faith-based partnerships around the world.

Five Sexual and Reproductive Health Services that Will Make Pregnancy Safer for All (International Women’s Health Coalition)

Honor Thy Mother: Reducing Maternal Mortality Worldwide  This article contains background information on maternal mortality as well as the Rachel Sabbath Initiative.

Human Rights Council Declares Maternal Death, Illness a Rights Violation  This is an article about the United Nations Human Rights Council adoption of a landmark resolution recognizing maternal death and illness as a pressing human rights concern.

Mary’s Story: An Advent Bible Study Guide on US Maternal Health.  Following the story of Mary, this Bible study explores Christian responses to the injustice of unequal maternal health care in the United States and around the world. 

Maternal Mortality   This is a background article on maternal mortality written by Queen Rania Al Abdullah, Wendi Murdoch, and Indra Nooyi.

A Matter of Life and Death: The Preventable Crisis of Maternal Mortality  This call to religious leaders asks them to take action and speak out against maternal mortality and for reproductive justice.

The MDG5 Conversation: A United Methodist Study about Improving Maternal Health. An online study to connect congregations to global efforts to save women’s lives.  It includes scriptural and theological reflection, prayer and links to a wide variety of resources.

Midwifery Initiative Offers Hope for MDG #5, Encourages Legitimacy of Caregiving Sector (Ecumenical Women at the United Nations).  A report on a UNFPA program to train and empower midwives to promote maternal health in Afghanistan.

No Woman Should Die Giving Life: Safe Motherhood Resource Kit (United Nations Population Fund).  A web-based resource with publications, fact sheets, video clips and other educational resources for promoting maternal health and family planning.

Progress for Children: A Report Card on Maternal Mortality (UNICEF, September 2008).  Progress for Children monitors progress in maternal health and highlights areas where improvements are needed.

Reducing Maternal Mortality (The European Union and the United Nations Population Fund). A report on the scale of maternal mortality worldwide including a framework for effective policies to reduce maternal mortality rates.

Trends in Maternal Mortality: 1990 to 2008. Estimates developed by WHO, UNFPA, UNICEF, and The World Bank.

Why Women Still Die Giving Birth (British Broadcasting Corporation, October 18, 2007).  A news report including statistics and commentary on the realities of maternal mortality.

Print Resources on Maternal Health and Maternal Mortality

The Hospital by the River: A Story of Hope  Catherine Hamlin, and John Little.  (Oxford: Monarch Books, 2004).  The story of a faith-based partnership to increase maternal health in Ethiopia.

Monique and the Mango Rains: Two Years with a Midwife in Mali   Kris Holloway.  (Long Grove: Waveland Press, 2006).  A Peace Corps volunteer tells her story of teaching family planning and maternal health in Mali.

Women in Scripture:  A Dictionary  Carol Meyers, Toni Craven, and Ross Kraemer, eds.

Online Bibliography

Adding It Up: The Costs of and Benefits of Investing in Family Planning and Maternal and Newborn Health (Guttmacher Institute and United Nations Population Fund, 2009). How sustained and increased investment in sexual and reproductive health services in developing countries promises tremendous benefits to women, families and societies.

Catholic Attitudes on Sexual Behavior and Reproductive Health (Catholics for Choice, 2004). A report revealing the diversity of Catholic thought regarding sexuality and reproductive health issues.

Culture Matters: Lessons from a Legacy of Engaging Faith-based Organizations (United Nations Population Fund, 2008). A summary of partnerships between UNFPA and faith- based constituencies in the areas of reproductive health and population with an assessment of the outcomes, lessons learned and best practices of faith-based partnerships around the world.

Expanding Family Planning Options through Partnerships with Faith-Based Organizations (Institute for Reproductive Health, Georgetown University, 2006). Brief summary of the Institute’s collaborations with Catholic, Protestant and Muslim organizations in the developing world to expand family planning options and augment the services of faith-based organizations in local communities.

Five Sexual and Reproductive Health Services that Will Make Pregnancy Safer for All(International Women’s Health Coalition)

ICPD – International Conference on Population and Development (UNFPA). This collection of resources includes the report from the ICPD in 1994 and subsequent reports on the 10th and 15th anniversaries of this milestone conference.

Making Motherhood Safer: Overcoming Obstacles on the Pathway to Care (Population Reference Bureau, 2002). A report outlining policy options for reducing maternal mortality.

Midwifery initiative offers hope for MDG #5, encourages legitimacy of caregiving sector (Ecumenical Women at the United Nations). A report on a UNFPA program to train and empower midwives to promote maternal health in Afghanistan.

No Woman Should Die Giving Life: Safe Motherhood Resource Kit (United Nations Population Fund). A web-based resource with publications, fact sheets, video clips and other educational resources for promoting maternal health and family planning.

Progress for Children: A Report Card on Maternal Mortality (UNICEF, September 2008). The seventh in a series of reports on the UN Millennium Development Goals, Progress for Children monitors progress in maternal health and highlights areas where improvements are needed.

Reducing Maternal Mortality: The Contribution of the Right to the Highest Sustainable Standard of Health (The European Union and the United Nations Population Fund). A report on the scale of maternal mortality worldwide including a framework for effective policies to reduce maternal mortality rates.

Remarks on the 15th Anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development (Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, January 8, 2010). A major policy speech declaring the U.S. government’s renewed support for international family planning and reproductive health programs.

Why Women Still Die Giving Birth (British Broadcasting Corporation, October 18, 2007). A news report including statistics and commentary on the realities of maternal mortality.

A World of Difference: Sexual and Reproductive Health and Risks (Population Action International, 2001). A progress report on a 1994 plan to transform, and fund, reproductive health programs around the world.

 

Print Bibliography

Hamlin, Catherine, and John Little. The Hospital by the River: A Story of Hope (Oxford: Monarch Books, 2004). The story of a faith-based partnership to increase maternal health in Ethiopia.

Holloway, Kris. Monique and the Mango Rains: Two Years with a Midwife in MalI (Long Grove: Waveland Press, 2006). A Peace Corps volunteer tells her story of teaching family planning and maternal health in Mali.

Jung, Patricia, Mary Hunt, and Radhika Balakrishnan, eds. Good Sex: Feminist Perspectives from the World’s Religions (Piscataway: Rutgers University Press, 2001). Scholars of religion and women’s studies explore what feminists have contributed to the understanding and embodiment of sexuality in a globalized world.

Maguire, Daniel C. Sacred Choices: The Right to Contraception and Abortion in Ten World Religions (Minneapolis: Augsburg Fortress, 2001). A Christian theologian demonstrates how 10 major religious traditions affirm the right to family planning, including contraception and abortion.

Maguire, Daniel C., ed. Sacred Rights: The Case for Contraception and Abortion in World Religions (New York: Oxford University Press, 2003). Scholars from a range of traditions offer a progressive view of their religion’s views on family planning.

Meyers, Carol, Toni Craven, and Ross Kraemer, eds. Women in Scripture: A Dictionary of Named and Unnamed Women in the Hebrew Bible, The Apopcrayphal/ Deuterocanonical Books, and the New Testament (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2001). A helpful source for information regarding mothers in the Bible.

Paulsell, Stephanie. Honoring the Body: Meditations on a Christian Practice
(San Francisco: Josey-Bass, 2002). A primer that weaves together Scripture, history and personal narrative to help individuals create and sustain a joyful relationship with their bodies.

Raines, John, and Daniel C. Maguire. What Men Owe To Women: Men’s Voices from World Religions (Albany: State University of New York Press, 2001). Male writers from a range of faiths – including Christian, Muslim, Taoist, African and Native American traditions – reassess gender relations within their traditions and identify religious support for the economic and political empowerment of women.

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