Bishop comes out in support of Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh

boyea harbaugh Bishop Earl Boyea of the Diocese of Lansing. University of Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh at his introductory press conference on Dec. 30, 2014. | Diocese of Lansing | Eric Upchurch, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

After Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh made headlines for speaking publicly about his pro-life views, he received a tip of the hat from the bishop of his own diocese in Lansing.

In a statement released on July 28, Bishop Earl Boyea praised Harbaugh for having the courage of his convictions. 

“Jim Harbaugh has eloquently spoken-up for two of the most vulnerable groups in our society: mothers in crisis pregnancy situations and their unborn children,” said Boyea. “What is more, he has done so with great courage, compassion and, indeed, common-sense.” 

He continued, “Across the Diocese of Lansing, there will be many people – and not just Catholics – who are enormously encouraged by Coach Harbaugh’s public witness to the sanctity of human life. For that he has our gratitude and, of course, our prayers.”

Harbaugh was a keynote speaker at the Plymouth Right to Life dinner and auction on July 17 and gave a powerful speech in defense of the unborn.

“I believe in having the courage to let the unborn be born,” he said, according to the Detroit Catholic. “I love life. I believe in having a loving care and respect for life and death. My faith and my science are what drive these beliefs in me. Quoting from Jeremiah, ‘Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you. Before you were born, I set you apart. I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.'”

“In God’s plan, each unborn human truly has a future filled with potential, talent, dreams and love,” he added. “I have living proof in my family, my children, and the many thousands that I’ve coached that the unborn are amazing gifts from God to make this world a better place. To me, the right choice is to have the courage to let the unborn be born.”

Later in an interview with ESPN, Harbaugh shared how he has told his family, players, and staff members that if they found themselves in an unplanned pregnancy and could not take care of the baby then he and his wife would raise the child.  

"I've told [them] the same thing I tell my kids, boys, the girls, same thing I tell our players, our staff members. I encourage them if they have a pregnancy that wasn't planned, to go through with it, go through with it," Harbaugh said. "Let that unborn child be born and if at that time, you don't feel like you can care for it, you don't have the means or the wherewithal, then Sarah and I will take that baby." 

He continued, "Any player on our team, any female staff member or any staff member or anybody in our family or our extended family that doesn't feel like after they have a baby they can take care of it, we got a big house. We'll raise that baby."

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