Bishop Robert Deeley, head of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, prays at the altar during a Mass in November 2019, as Parish of the Precious Blood parochial vicar Rev. Arockia Prabu looks on. Credit: Courtesy of the Diocese of Portland

Some prominent religious groups in Maine are celebrating the Supreme Court’s decision to end constitutional protections for abortion.

The Supreme Court announced the decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, a nearly 50-year precedent, on Friday.

Nationwide and across Maine, organizations on either side of the abortion issue are reacting to the Supreme Court’s conservative majority decision. Some religious groups and churches have fought for the landmark case that established the constitutional right to abortion in the United States to be overturned for decades and said they anticipated the Supreme Court’s ruling.

In the long term, the Supreme Court’s decision will save the lives of countless babies, the Christian Civic League of Maine said in a statement released Friday.

“There is plenty of work still to do in Maine to uphold both the sanctity of human life and the dignity of women,” the Augusta-based nonprofit said. “Until meaningful change can happen in the Legislature, the focus should be on developing ways to support women in crisis by supporting churches, pregnancy centers and adoption agencies.”

Barbara Ford, an ally of the group and executive director of Shepherd’s Godparent Home in Bangor, provided the statement and said the crisis center is supportive. The facility, which opened its doors to residents in 2003, houses women in their teenage years to 30s who are pregnant and in crisis, according to its website.

“This is an opportunity for each state to examine where they stand on the issue and to take pause and consider how best to support women in crisis,” Ford said.

To celebrate what the Family Policy Alliance’s president and CEO Craig DeRoche called a “momentous and long-awaited victory,” the Christian Civic Alliance shared DeRoche’s statement on Facebook. The Family Policy Alliance, a conservative Christian lobbying group based in Colorado Springs, Colorado, livestreamed updates and talks with state and national leaders on its website, Facebook and YouTube on Friday. The group directed followers to AfterRoe.com, a website of the alliance and Family Policy Foundation.

The church community at Crosspoint Church of Bangor is in favor of the decision because it protects life in the womb, and life is valuable, Senior Pastor Tom Brown said.

“We’re excited about it,” he said. “Absolutely, we’re excited about it because we believe life begins at conception. And God is the author of life.”

The move to end constitutional protections for abortion reaffirms that “every life is sacred, and it promotes protection for women and children from the grave injustice of abortion,” said Bishop Robert Deeley, head of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, in a statement released Friday.

The Catholic Diocese of Portland will continue to accompany women, regardless of their faith, who are experiencing difficulties in pregnancy through various Catholic agencies in Maine, such as pregnancy help centers and parish-based initiatives like Walking with Moms in Need, Deeley said.

“God is merciful, and it is of paramount importance that people who experience distress grow in understanding of this truth and are guided on a path to emotional and spiritual healing,” he said.