Catholic Bioethics and the Moral Treatment of Human Beings

By Susan Ciancio / June 25, 2021 /
young nurse caring for an elderly man

Respect, compassion, care, kindness, empathy, and love. These actions come about when people recognize the inherent dignity in every person. And nowhere is it more important to understand people’s inherent dignity than in a capacity where someone has to take care of another or provide for his well-being. This occurs most often in the medical…

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The Hippocratic Oath: A Pledge to Respect Life

By Sofia Infante / April 21, 2021 /
happy elderly lady in a plaid jacket

In 400 B.C. the Greek doctor Hippocratis of Cos, regarded as the father of medicine, wrote the Hippocratic Oath. This pledge of ethics outlines proper conduct and basic principles to be observed by doctors. All graduating medical students once pledged first to “do no harm”—the most well-known and fundamental promise. However, the original Oath has…

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The Fractured History of the Hemlock Society

By Brian Clowes, PhD / June 18, 2020 /
hemlock poisonous flower

A judicial determination should be made when it is necessary to hasten the death of an individual, whether it be a demented parent, a suffering, severely disabled spouse or a child. ~ Former Hemlock Society Executive Director Faye Girsh.1   British journalist Derek Humphry had a bit of a problem on his hands in early…

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Church Teachings on Euthanasia

By Brian Clowes, PhD / June 2, 2020 /
health care elderly

Once any human being becomes worthless or expendable, all are reduced from an absolute to a relative value and no two human beings would be of equal worth, thus demolishing the very foundation of moral order….By devaluing life ― the life of the unborn, the elderly, the comatose patient, the handicapped ― we are, quite…

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An Introduction to the Problem of Euthanasia

By Brian Clowes, PhD / April 17, 2020 /
active euthanasia cutting off medication

The moral test of government is how it treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the aged; and those in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped. ― Senator Hubert Humphrey.1   Euthanasia: Here We Go Again! You have to…

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Assisted Suicide and the Macabre ‘Logic’ of the Culture of Death

By Fr. Shenan J. Boquet / February 3, 2020 /

The Deadly Connection Between Moral Issues Even many people in the pro-life and pro-family movements do not fully appreciate the deep threads that tie together many seemingly disparate social issues. Contraception, abortion, euthanasia, divorce, pornography, same-sex “marriage,” and gender ideology (to name some of the big ones) are not isolated social or spiritual problems. Rather,…

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Physician-Assisted Suicide for Terminally Ill Patients

By HLI Staff / March 13, 2019 /
st elizabeth visiting a hospital

“[T]he value of life can today undergo a kind of “eclipse”, even though conscience does not cease to point to it as a sacred and inviolable value,  as is evident in the tendency to disguise certain crimes against life in its early or final stages by using innocuous medical terms which distract attention from the…

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Winning Against Euthanasia

By Deborah M. Piroch / January 1, 2018 /

Government Says No to Assisted Suicide In September 2017 the House of Representatives introduced a bipartisan bill saying “no” to assisted suicide. Euthanasia “puts everyone, including those most vulnerable, at risk of deadly harm and undermines the integrity of the health care system.” Having been referred to the Subcommittee on Health, no further action has…

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Swiss Organ Donation Controversially Redefined

By Deborah M. Piroch / November 17, 2017 /

Organ Donation Highly Controversial This week a Swiss law redefining organ donation went into effect. The change, criticized by Human Life International Switzerland, the Union of Catholic Swiss Physicians, the Swiss Hippocratic Society and the Swiss Society for Bioethics, redefines clinical death as occurring after a mere five minutes. This issue is as much a…

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HLI Statement on Archbishop’s Warning to Catholics about Suicide

By HLI Staff / February 29, 2016 /

Statement from HLI president Father Shenan J. Boquet regarding Ottawa Archbishop Terrence Prendergrast’s warning to Catholics in his archdiocese that they will be barred from receiving the last rites of the Church if they seek to end their lives by euthanasia or assisted suicide under their country’s new law. “We are grateful to see the logic…

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