Belgian archbishop seeks euthanasia opt-out for Catholic hospitals

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Archbishop Jozef De Kesel speaks as he is named archbishop of Mechelen-Brussels, during a Mass in Mechelen on Dec. 12, 2015. Photo courtesy of REUTERS/Eric Vidal
*Editors: This photo may only be republished with RNS-BELGIUM-EUTHANASIA, originally transmitted on Jan. 7, 2016.

Archbishop Jozef De Kesel speaks as he is named archbishop of Mechelen-Brussels, during a Mass in Mechelen on Dec. 12, 2015. Photo courtesy of REUTERS/Eric Vidal *Editors: This photo may only be republished with RNS-BELGIUM-EUTHANASIA, originally transmitted on Jan. 7, 2016.

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(RNS) Euthanasia for terminally ill adults is legal -- and popular -- but opposition is growing now that it's allowed for terminally ill children and people with severe mental illness.

  • Larry

    Wouldn’t it be nice if Catholic hospitals ran on the idea of providing medically necessary services with the informed consent of patients?

    If dogma is getting in the way of providing care for a patient, it has no place in a medical facility. Theologians have no place in the decision process of medical professionals in how to treat patients.

    Too often the Catholic Church seeks to impose its will on unwilling and consenting patients in service of their religious doctrines. Hospital care is seldom something patients have a lot of choice in (except for voluntary surgical procedures). So the idea that patients have the option of going to other hospitals is not credible.

    Btw, these are not charity run organizations, but facilities the church has invested time and resources into for the purposes of turning a profit. Many hospitals fall under Catholic control because they are acquired/purchased.

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  • Deacon John M Bresnahan

    The patron saint of science (or medicine) without moral guidance or input is Dr. Mengele. The history of German medicine of the 1930’s is historical proof that there is such a thing as a slippery slope that can take us in directions we never thought possible because our intentions are supposedly so worthuy. But once –as the German doctors put it– “life unworthy of life” becomes our guiding moral principle –we are rapidly descending the slope.

  • Larry

    Way to Godwin!

    Catholic Church interventions into medical decisions have nothing to do with morality and everything to do with adherence to arbitrary dictum from higher ups. Religious morality is all about outsourcing decisions to others, avoiding personal responsibility for a given view and excusing actions by proof texting ones scripture. Naturally the church believes it knows better about people than they do themselves. Typical nonsense. Egotistical autocrats interposing themselves into personal decisions they have no business being involved in.

    Slippery slope, aka the reductio ad absurdum fallacy is all about avoiding an issue in its own facts to promote unreasonable hysteria.

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  • Deacon John M Bresnahan

    Modern Americans are just as ostrich-like on some issues as “good” Germans were in the 1930’s. I have yet to see a good argument that proves “It Can’t Happen Here” at the hands of “good” Americans. Already in parts of Europe an elderly person’s life is as expendable as a child’s life in the womb
    We are not just individuals with rights. We are also living in a community that can morally rot putting every human life at risk.
    I don’t know if the display “The Nazi Doctors” I saw is still at the Holocaust Museum in Washington. But it is a good teaching display for all who have ears to hear and eyes to see,

  • Larry

    “I have yet to see a good argument that proves “It Can’t Happen Here” at the hands of “good” Americans.”

    The best defense to descent into dictatorship is we don’t let our elected leaders vote away the civil liberties of those in the political minority. We temper their actions through judicial review. Those “judicial activists” conservatives bemoan when discriminatory laws are shot down are what keep our legislators honest.

    All those f00ls who recently thought our Supreme Court was allegedly overstepping its authority in striking down a law which had no rational or secular purpose are the ones who would gladly vote away the freedoms of others (and themselves). The ones who think majority rule allows them to treat any other group like garbage. The ones who think freedom entitles them to attack the rights of others.

    Btw enough with the Godwin bu11. Informed consent is a major element of “right to die” legislation precisely to avoid Nazi-type situations.

  • Deacon John M Bresnahan

    Don’t be so Pollyanish. When some children see grannies estate being drained to pay medical bills they will be very quick to shove a pen and document in her face and coerce her to sign that she wants some hemlock now please.

    Activists that are promoting getting rid of expensive or troublesome people are just plain evil or supremely blind

  • Your ignorance of the laws in question are duly noted. So you are criticizing what you think the laws are about and not what they actually are. Your posts have been a giant waste of time.

    That being said, its no business of churches to be interjecting themselves into the informed consented medical decisions of patients. As usual Churches act as if people have no free will and that all people must defer to their arbitrary decisions,

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