Planned Parenthood sends letter to churches - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Planned Parenthood sends letter to churches

There's a controversy brewing over sex education in the Mid-South.

Planned Parenthood sent a message to hundreds of Mid-South ministers, encouraging them to lead the way. It urges religious leaders to talk to parents and children about sexuality and while it may be well-intentioned, it may not be so well-received.

Barry Chase with Planned Parenthood defends his letter without pause.

October was "family sexuality education month" in Memphis and Shelby County. What better time for outreach, right?

Well, it's where the group reached that might get your attention.

They reached to religion.

"We thought that if we can get to parents to talk to their children about this subject, through these institutions of faith, that it would reinforce the message of care and concern and love that every family should share with their children," said Chase.

Chase sent more than a thousand of these letters, stuffed with pamphlets, to churches, synagogues and mosques in Shelby and Desoto County asking religious leaders to encourage parents to have conversations about sexuality.

Father John Geaney with the Memphis Diocese says thanks, but no thanks.

"Planned Parenthood sends a letter and that's... A situation in which we find that while we appreciate perhaps the fact that they think about that... It's not our way," said Geaney.

Chase knows that other churches, and other faiths, may react even more dramatically.

"It may not be the most subtle way to do it, but if we can help parents and children find a solution to this conflict that they have in discussing what our culture brings us every single day, then we are fulfilling one of the most important parts of our mission," said Chase.

Planned Parenthood also sent out brochures and an offer to come into the places of worship to talk with parents about how to do this. Father Geaney told Action News 5 the Diocese does believe in the importance of mature sexual education. They just have a different way of doing it.

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