Inside Out 270: Should Christians Pursue Prenatal Testing?

02.13.13 | Martha Manikas-Foster

More pregnant women than ever are being offered the chance to learn about the genetics of the babies they carry. Amy Julia Becker, our guest for a conversation on prenatal testing, believes that parents are not always prepared for the ethical and practical questions raised even by the offer of these tests. Her newest book works to provide what’s been lacking; it’s an e-book titled What Every Woman Needs to Know About Prenatal Testing: Insights from a Mom Who Has Been There.

My story’s very different from Amy Julia’s, but one of the most difficult days in my life was when someone from my doctor’s office called with the results of a prenatal screening test. What the stranger on the other end of the line was reading to me was a statistical possibility—not a diagnosis—but, in that moment, I discovered that I was not prepared to hear what she was saying.

“What I really want women—and couples—to have conversations about is what role do you see prenatal testing having, and why?” Amy Julia says in our interview. “What information do you want, and why do you want it? Because we tend to believe that information is neutral, and the more information we have, the better. But it’s not neutral.”

Genetic testing can lead to choices that improve lives. That’s absolutely true. But the data we learn can also tempt us to define a person by a diagnosis. And since most of us don’t understand much about a given diagnosis, it’s possible that we’ll miss the chance to celebrate the image of God in a fellow human being created and loved by the Father.

Please join us for a conversation with Amy Julia Becker, wife, mother, seminary student, and a member of Christianity Today's October 2012 list of  “50 Women to Watch.”

You can hear our conversation by clicking on the “Listen” button above.

To access her e-book What Every Woman Needs to Know About Prenatal Testing: Insights from a Mom Who Has Been There, click here:

To read her blog post "Should Christians Pursue Prenatal Testing?" click here:

To follow her blog “Thin Places: Faith, Family and Disability,” click here:

To access her other books and articles, click here:


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Inside Out airs Wednesdays at 12:20pm EST during the Family Life Noon Report.


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