|Celebrate World Down Syndrome Day, Mar. 18|
The Global Down Syndrome Foundation has set aside March 18 for celebrating six million very special people worldwide. They are participants in our churches, families, workplaces, and schools and when allowed to be born they are living longer and healthier lives. In 1983, those born with Down Syndrome had a life expectancy of only 25 years. Today, those allowed to be born can expect to live 60 years. Last week the oldest living man with Down Syndrome, Kenny Cridge, celebrated his 76th birthday!
Sadly, many babies, diagnosed with Down Syndrome before birth, are aborted. Some reports have said those numbers are as high as 90% in what is one of the most alarming evidences that our society devalues anyone who is genetically remarkable. The words from the Book of Job, "Did not he who made me in the womb make them?" (Job 31:15), point to the audacity of thinking we have any authority under God to decide whether any other human being ought to live.
Pregnant women often feel pressure to use prenatal tests to screen for Down Syndrome even though some tests have high inaccuracy rates and pose a risk of miscarriage. Newer tests may be more accurate, but it is too early to be certain. You can help by learning more about Down Syndrome and prenatal testing and then passing that information on to others. The Global Down Syndrome Foundation provides free downloadable pamphlet that is must reading for pregnant moms and highly recommended for everyone.