I was chatting with a good friend today. She asked me what I thought happened to the spirit of a child after a miscarriage. She has had a few, as have I. We shared our thoughts and then she said something I think is profound. “Why don’t any religions have a rite for families who lost a child to miscarriage? If they did, there would be less abortions.”
Though I understand my religion’s reasoning for not having a rite for the loss of a miscarriage, I see her point. Thousand of children are murdered every day in the name of “women’s choice,” because a child is inconvenient, or uncomfortable, or will make the woman ‘fat’, or any of the multitude of excuses for using murder as birth control. If the early loss of a child was mourned by religions, perhaps there would be less abortions.
Eve was fortunate. In her time, women and men were still perfect, with little cellular degradation. I doubt she suffered, as my friend and I have, from miscarriages. Yet, as I have stated many times, I believe she and Adam were given to know what would happen in our time.
They must have been excited to see the many technical advances of our day. Imagine their delight in seeing our advances in transportation and communication. For instance, the ability we have to travel around the world in a day, and receive messages from the other side of the world immediately. News, and other presentations are instantaneously available.
The command given specifically to Eve was to be a mother, to multiply. Much, if not all, of her life was spent bearing, raising, and teaching children—hers and those of her daughters and granddaughters. When she no longer could give birth, her daughters and granddaughters carried on replenishing the earth. Even then, I believe she taught the children and their mothers.
Knowing that, imagine her deep sorrow to learn that women would willingly allow their children to be murdered, under the guise of “women’s choice” and “my body, my choice.” I can see her weeping for many days over this knowledge. How could women so easily destroy that great gift she gave up so much for to have?
Additionally, I believe she wept when women began to struggle to bear children. It was given to women to bring life to the earth. Those of us who cannot have children, or who struggle to become and stay pregnant, feel Eve’s anguish.
Child bearing and raising children has been the domain of women. Still, men feel our pain and their own when expected children are lost. My husband grieved with me, for me and for himself, over our lost little ones. Other men ache for lost children.
I was blessed to finally deliver five healthy children. Not all couples are so blessed. We, who have lost children to miscarriage, and those for whom conception is impossible, grieve over lost children who could be ours, through adoption. We perceive abortion as selfish withholding of beautiful, healthy children from those who want children, but cannot bear them on their own.
What do you think? Should churches provide rites for miscarried children? Have you experienced the pain of miscarriage or inability to conceive? How have you managed? I look forward to your comments.