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Guide to the Papers of the Clergy Consultation Service 1967/1979

Overview of the Collection

Parsons, E. Spencer


Papers of the Clergy Consultation Service






Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections

Deering Library, Level 3
1970 Campus Drive
Evanston, IL,
Phone: 847-491-3635


E. Spencer Parsons served as chairman of both the Chicago Clergy Consultation Service on Problem Pregnancies and the Illinois Clergy Consultation Service. This collection contains articles and newspaper ephemera on abortion, his files related to the National Clergy Consultation Service on Abortion (1969-1973), the Chicago Clergy Consultation Service on Problem Pregnancies (1967-1973), and the Illinois Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights (1974-1979), including membership rosters, correspondence, minutes, and articles.

Biographical Information

The Clergy Consultation Service was founded in 1967 by twenty-one ministers and rabbis who established the counseling service to advise women about problem pregnancies and make referrals on medical issues including abortion. This group was initially centered at Judson Memorial Church in New York City where Howard Moody served as senior pastor. The New York CCS raised money to fund a Reproduction Crisis Facility in 1969 which operated until repeal of that legislation in 1972. The U.S. Supreme Court ruling on 23 January 1973 guaranteed women the right to choose when and whether to bear children.

Access Terms

This Collection is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.

Corporate Name

Clergy Consultation Service

Illinois Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights

Jane (Abortion service)

Personal Name

Brown, Ralph E., 1929-2008

Campbell, William J. (William Joseph), 1905-1988

Carmen, Arlene

Ketchum, Jesse

Miller, Vern, 1928-

Moody, Howard, 1921-

Parsons, E. Spencer

Ruether, Rosemary Radford

Ticktin, Max D.

Woods, Denis

Topical Term

Abortion services--Illinois--Chicago

Abortion services--United States--History

Abortion--United States

Pastoral counseling

Administrative Information

Acquisition Information

E. Spencer Parsons, dean of Rockefeller Chapel of the University of Chicago, donated this collection on the Clergy Consultation Service and its activities to the McCormick Library in October 1999.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Sigrid Pohl Perry in July 2000 and encoded by her into XMetaL in September 2004.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright for materials resides with the creators of the items in question unless otherwise designated.

Conditions Governing Access

Available for research.

Preferred Citation

Papers of the Clergy Consultation Service, 1967-1979, Manuscript Series CXXVIII, Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections, Northwestern University Library.

Related Materials

Women's Ephemera Files (WEF) on abortion and JANE. Inquire at the McCormick Library reference desk for these materials. Paula Kamen collection on JANE (Series CXXV) Jenny Knauss collection on women's health (Series XCIII).

Scope and Contents

These materials collected by E. Spencer Parsons consist of articles, newspaper ephemera, correspondence, minutes of meetings, membership rosters, and sermons and addresses related to the activities of the Clergy Consultation Service between 1968 and 1976. A book on the history of the organization is also included: Arlene Carmen and Howard Moody, Abortion Counseling and Social Change: from Illegal Act to Medical Practice; The Story of the Clergy Consultation Service on Abortion, 1973.


Folder 1

Carmen, Arlene and Moody, Howard. "Abortion Counseling and Social Change: From Illegal Act to Medical Practice; The Story of the Clergy Consultation Service on Abortion." Valley Forge: Judson Press, 1973.

Folder 2


Folder 2

Correspondence, membership, articles, 1969-1973.

Folder 2

First National Conference on Abortion Laws, Chicago, February 14-16, 1969.

Folder 2

Brownmiller, Susan. "Abortion Counseling: Service Beyond Sermons," August 1969.

Folder 2

Conger, S.B., "Evaluation of Abortion Services at Women's Medical Services," 1970.

Folder 2

Davis, N.J., "Clergy Abortion Brokers: A Transactional Analysis of Social Movement Development," 1973.

Folder 2

Grinspoon, L., "Addiction, Dependence, and the 'Stepping-stone Hypothesis,'" 1971.

Folder 2

Harvey, H.H. and Pyle, B.Y.E., "On the Healthiness of Four Thousand Abortions in a Free Standing Abortion Service," 1970.

Folder 2

The Hooker's Hookup; A Professional Journal. vol. 1 no. 2, Winter 1980. Published by Judson Memorial Church, New York City. vol. 1 no. 2, Winter 1980. Published by Judson Memorial Church, New York City.

Folder 2

Kuehn, E., "Minnesota Girls Go to Mexico because Abortion Is 'Less Illegal' There," 1970.

Folder 2

Moody, Howard, "Heroin: The Law Is Worse Than the Drug," 1972.

Folder 2

Nathansson, B.A., "Ambulatory Abortion: Experience with 26,000 Cases (July 1, 1970-August 1, 1971)"

Folder 2

Miscellaneous short articles and newspaper clippings.

Folder 3

Fliers, memos, correspondence, membership, minutes, statistics: 1969-1976, Chicago Area Clergy Consultation Service on Problem Pregnancies

Folder 4


Folder 4

Correspondence, memos, fliers, policy statements, questionnaires, contact list for the Midwest, U.S., and Mexico City: 1967-1973.

Scope and Contents

Chicago Clergy Consultation Service, Illinois Citizens for the Medical Control of Abortion, Society for Humane Abortion, Choice, Illinois Clergy Consultation Services.

Folder 4

Pro-Duosterone Pregnancy Calculator

Folder 5

Recommendations, clipping, sample questionnaire. Cooperation Abortion Referral & Evaluation Service (CARES)

Folder 6


Folder 6

Correspondence, minutes, press releases, clippings, membership: 1974-1979. Illinois Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights (RCAR).

Folder 6

Miller, E., "Religious Liberty and Abortion," New England Conference of the Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights.

November 4, 1976.

Folder 6

"We Affirm. . . ; excerpts from statements about abortion rights. . . religious organizations,"


Folder 6

Fliers. Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights of Massachusetts.


Folder 7

Abortion: editorials, press releases, articles, clippings, correspondence with media,


Folder 8

Abortion cases: legal briefs, clippings, correspondence


Scope and Contents

Brown, Ralph E.; Campbell, William J. (judge and dissenter in civil action), Miller, Vern (Kansas attorney general); Ruether, Rosemary Radford (statement on free choice).

Folder 9

Abortion cases: correspondence, clippings, legal briefs, press releases


Scope and Contents

Ketchum, Dr. Jesse, Parsons, E. Spencer, Ticktin, Rabbi Max D.

Folder 10

Correspondence, including letters from users of the Clergy Consultation Service letter includes sermon draft.


Scope and Contents

Parsons, E. Spencer; Woods, Denis (letter includes sermon draft).

Folder 11


Folder 11

Articles, press releases, statements, sermon; Parsons, E. Spencer.


Folder 11

"Abortion: Conscience and Public Policy," Parsons, E. Spencer.

Folder 11

"Abortion: A Private and Public Concern," Parsons, E. Spencer.

January 1971

Folder 11

"Symposium Population: Moral Issues," Parsons, E. Spencer.


Folder 11

"Drugs and the Law: A Problem in Ethics," Parsons, E. Spencer.

May 1974

Folder 11

"Clergy Consultation Service on Problem Pregnancies: Background Information on the Legal Aspects of Abortion," Parsons, E. Spencer. Three versions of a handout prepared by Parsons.

Folder 11

Sermon draft, Woods, Denis.

August 1970

Folder 11

Dilitation & Curettage article related to abortion, Steinberg, M.D.


Folder 12


Folder 12

Notes for "San Diego file," chronology of events, statistics


Scope and Contents

Parsons, E. Spencer; Chicago Clergy Consultation Service

Folder 12

"A Survey of Over 20,000 Abortions at the Cook County Hospital"


Folder 13

Questions and answers regarding abortion (blank surveys)