The 11/03/13 Joy Jar

3 Nov

Moi wrote about respect for life in The death cult of the secular ruling elite: Belgium to consider law to grant euthanasia for children, dementia patients

Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is respect for life.

Today’s thought nuggets come from United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Respect Life Program”

The measure of love is to love without measure.
~ Theme, Respect Life Program (2010)

Every human being, at every stage and condition, is willed and loved by God. For this reason, every human life is sacred. To deprive someone of life is a grave wrong and a grave dishonor to God. Because we are created in the image of God, who is Love, our identity and our vocation is to love. Pope Benedict has called this “the key to [our] entire existence.”
~ Flyer, Respect Life Program (2010)

We do not begin life as free and autonomous individuals. We are entirely dependent on others for our very existence. We are born into families—the “schools of love” where, over time, we learn to forgo the immediate satisfaction of every self-centered desire and we find true, lasting joy in bringing good and happiness to others.
~ Flyer, Respect Life Program (2010)

We will not be fit for heaven until we have learned to love one another as God loves us, as he radically demonstrated on the Cross. If we don’t learn to love sacrificially, we may not only fail in reaching heaven, we will make life on earth hellish for ourselves and others.
~ Flyer, Respect Life Program (2010)

How we care for an unexpected child, a parent suffering from cognitive impairment, or an infant with a disability does not reflect the degree of their humanity, but our own. We are as dependent on them as they are on us. There can be no compromise with the standard Jesus set and continually calls us to: The measure of love is to love without measure!
~ Flyer, Respect Life Program (2010)

It is clear that there is no moral requirement to utilize burdensome treatments that merely prolong the dying process. Unless the patient is very near death, however, the provision of nutrition and hydration, even by artificial means, should be administered as long as they can sustain life and alleviate suffering without imposing serious risks or side effects to the patient.
~ Marie T. Hilliard, PhD, “Caring for Each Other, Even Unto Death,” Respect Life Program (2010)

Today active interventions or omissions of basic care are proposed for ending the lives not only of the dying, but also patients suffering from a long-term cognitive disability, such as advanced dementia or a so-called persistent “vegetative” state. Some argue that patients who cannot consciously respond have lost their “human dignity.” This view is dangerously wrong: Human beings never lose their dignity, that is, their inherent and inestimable worth as unique persons loved by God and created in His image. People can be denied respect affirming that dignity, but they never lose their God-given dignity.
~ Marie T. Hilliard, PhD, “Caring for Each Other, Even Unto Death,” Respect Life Program (2010)

There are scientifically sound and surgically and medically effective ways to treat the causes of infertility in a thoroughly compassionate manner. There are doctors across the nation who have learned the art and science of looking into the causes of infertility and, as appropriate, addressing a couple’s condition medically, surgically, and psychologically.
~ John T. Bruchalski, MD, FACOG, “Hope for Married Couples who Want to Have a Child,” Respect Life Program (2010)

Many successful options exist for Christians who want a morally sound way to treat infertility, and who need help combating the sadness, frustration, and even anger that can come from the inability to “have a child.”
~ John T. Bruchalski, MD, FACOG, “Hope for Married Couples who Want to Have a Child,” Respect Life Program (2010)

Science has shown that reducing the number of babies born does not in itself solve political, economic, or environmental problems. Rather, reducing births often creates grave problems. Take Social Security and Medicare, for example. In the United States and other industrialized countries, these programs are difficult to sustain unless each generation of taxpaying workers is larger than the one that went before it.
~ Steven W. Mosher, “Make Room for People,” Respect Life Program (2010)

Birth rates have been in free fall in most of the developed world for some time now. Europe as a whole is averaging only about 1.3 children per couple. Some Asian countries, such as Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan, are in even worse shape demographically. This birth dearth means that the work force and revenues are shrinking at precisely the same time that elderly citizens are growing in number—and demanding the retirement and health benefits they have long been promised.
~ Steven W. Mosher, “Make Room for People,” Respect Life Program (2010)

Jesus exhorts us to bend over the physical and mental wounds of so many of our brothers and sisters whom we meet on the highways of the world. He helps us to understand that with God’s grace, accepted and lived out in our daily life, the experience of sickness and suffering can become a school of hope. In truth, as I said in the Encyclical Spe salvi, “It is not by sidestepping or fleeing from suffering that we are healed, but rather by our capacity for accepting it, maturing through it and finding meaning through union with Christ, who suffered with infinite love” (n. 37).
~ Pope Benedict XVI, Message for the Eighteenth World Day of the Sick (2010)

In order to protect nature, it is not enough to intervene with economic incentives or deterrents. The decisive issue is the overall moral tenor of society. If there is a lack of respect for the right to life and to a natural death, if human conception, gestation and birth are made artificial, if human embryos are sacrificed to research, the conscience of society ends up losing the concept of human ecology and, along with it, that of environmental ecology. It is contradictory to insist that future generations respect the natural environment when our educational systems and laws do not help them to respect themselves.
~ Pope Benedict XVI, Charity in Truth (Caritas in Veritate), 51 (2009)

The social question has become a radically anthropological question, in the sense that it concerns not just how life is conceived but also how it is manipulated, as bio-technology places it increasingly under man’s control. In vitro fertilization, embryo research, the possibility of manufacturing clones and human hybrids: all this is now emerging and being promoted in today’s highly disillusioned culture, which believes it has mastered every mystery, because the origin of life is now within our grasp. We must not underestimate the disturbing scenarios that threaten our future, or the powerful new instruments that the “culture of death” has at its disposal.
~ Pope Benedict XVI, Charity in Truth (Caritas in Veritate), 75 (2009)

To the tragic and widespread scourge of abortion we may well have to add in the future the systematic eugenic programming of births. At the other end of the spectrum, a pro-euthanasia mindset is making inroads as an equally damaging assertion of control over life that under certain circumstances is deemed no longer worth living. Underlying these scenarios are cultural viewpoints that deny human dignity.
~ Pope Benedict XVI, Charity in Truth (Caritas in Veritate), 75 (2009)

[In vitro fertilization] further depersonalizes the act of generating a child, turning it into a technical process in a laboratory. This procedure is so far from a loving act of the spouses that it can even be used to conceive a child if neither of them is alive, for the body of neither one is involved in the act of generating this life once sperm and egg are obtained and stored. Because these embryos are deliberately created not in the nurturing environment of the mother’s body but in the poor substitute of a culture in a glass dish, the great majority of them die.
~ USCCB, Life-Giving Love in an Age of Technology (2009)

Often embryos not used in a first attempt at pregnancy are frozen and stored for future attempts. This also poses a serious risk to their lives. When their parents have as many live-born children as they want, or abandon their efforts to have a child through IVF, the remaining embryos are considered “excess” or “spare.” Some are thrown away as laboratory waste, while others are abandoned indefinitely in a frozen state or slated for experimental purposes. The current debate about killing embryonic human beings on a large scale to “harvest” their embryonic stem cells arose partly because IVF clinics produced so many “spare” embryos, creating a terrible temptation for researchers to find a “use” for these human beings no longer wanted by their parents.
~ USCCB, Life-Giving Love in an Age of Technology (2009)

Population and climate change should be addressed from the broader perspective of a concern for protecting human life, caring for the environment, and respecting cultural norms and the religious faith and moral values of peoples. Population is not simply about statistics. Behind every demographic number is a precious and irreplaceable human life whose human dignity must be respected.
~ USCCB, Global Climate Change: A Plea for Dialogue, Prudence, and the Common Good (2001)

[The new Washington State law legalizing assisted suicide] represents a dangerous new assault on the culture of life. Of special concern is the threat that legalizing assisted suicide poses for vulnerable persons, who are already at risk of marginalization by an individualistic and utilitarian perspective of life. Those most at risk from this dangerous change in public policy are elderly persons, those without adequate health care, people with disabilities and those with no family support system.
~ Bishops of Washington State, “Respecting Life at the End of Life” (2008)

[Abortion is] a defining issue not only personally but socially. Poverty can be addressed incrementally, but the death of a child is quite final. Capital punishment should be abolished because, among other reasons, we cannot be absolutely certain that an innocent man or woman will not be executed. In an abortion, one victim is always innocent.
~ Cardinal Francis George, Archbishop of Chicago, “The Face of Evil: Demons and Death,” Oct. 1, 2000

Unfortunately in our culture we [are held] fast in a grip of deadly attitudes about human life, about the human person, especially in the moments of his or her beautiful but fragile beginnings and in the vulnerable times of old age and illness. There are some in our culture and in our country … who think that human civil institutions or some given human subject bestow the right to life. No! Not any of us can bestow the right to life. We can only recognize the right to life, uphold and defend it, and cherish its beauty.
~ Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston-Houston, homily at the Opening Mass, National Vigil for Life, Jan. 21, 2010

It is not enough for us even to defend innocent human life. Of course, if we fail to do this, we fail in our most urgent task. But by good deeds of love and charity, we must build this active culture of life that is ready and capable of turning back hell itself. If we won’t put the abortionist out of business we are pitiable souls. If we don’t enact laws and work tirelessly to change human hearts so that life is forever reverenced and protected, we have not fought the good fight which is our charge as the Church Militant. As warriors we must first beat back the enemy. But then let us not forget that we are warriors for the victory of life!
~ Most Rev. Robert W. Finn, Bishop of Kansas City-St. Joseph, Address to Gospel of Life Convention, April 18, 2009

At every Mass, we should offer special prayers for our nation and her leaders, in order that the culture of death may be overcome and a civilization of love may be steadfastly advanced. All Catholics throughout the nation should take part in Eucharistic adoration and in the praying of the Rosary for the restoration of the respect for human life and for the safeguarding of the integrity of the family.
~ Most Rev. Raymond L. Burke, Prefect, Apostolic Signatura, Address to the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast, May 8, 2009

No man is a problem. … No human being—no matter how poor or how weak—can be reduced to just a problem. When we allow ourselves to think of a human being as a mere problem, we offend his or her dignity. And, when we see another human being as a problem, we often give ourselves permission to look for expedient but not just solutions. The tragic history of the 20th Century shows that thinking like this even leads to “final solutions.”

For us, Catholics, therefore, there can be no such thing as a “problem pregnancy”—a only a child who is to be welcome in life and protected by law. The refugee, the migrant—even one without “papers”—is not a problem. He may perhaps be a stranger but a stranger to be embraced as a brother. Even criminals—for all the horror of their crimes—do not lose their God-given dignity as human beings. They too must be treated with respect, even in their punishment. This is why Catholic social teaching condemns torture and advocates for the abolition of the death penalty.
~ Most Rev. Thomas Wenski, Archbishop of Miami, homily at installation Mass, June 1, 2010

The real choice in accepting or rejecting a child with special needs is never between some imaginary perfection or imperfection. None of us is perfect. No child is perfect. The real choice in accepting or rejecting a child with special needs is between love and unlove; between courage and cowardice; between trust and fear. That’s the choice we face when it happens in our personal experience. And that’s the choice we face as a society in deciding which human lives we will treat as valuable, and which we will not.
~ Most Rev. Charles J. Chaput, OFM Cap, Archbishop of Denver, “Address to Phoenix Catholic Physicians’ Guild,” Oct. 6, 2009

Working to end abortion doesn’t absolve us from our obligations to the poor. It doesn’t excuse us from our duties to the disabled, the elderly and immigrants. In fact, it demands from us a much stronger commitment to materially support women who find themselves in a difficult pregnancy.

All of these obligations are vital. God will hold us accountable if we ignore them. But none of these other duties can obscure the fact that no human rights are secure if the right to life is not. And unfortunately, abortion is no longer the only major bioethical threat to that right in our culture. In fact, the right to life has never, at any time in the past, faced the range of challenges it faces right now, and will face in the immediate future. Physician-assisted suicide, cloning, genetic engineering and developments in biotechnology will raise profoundly serious questions about the definition of “human nature” and the protection of human dignity in the years ahead.
~ Most Rev. Charles J. Chaput, OFM Cap, Archbishop of Denver, “Why This Work Matters: Human Dignity and the Road Ahead,” March 9, 2010

Since the first century, the Church has addressed the moral evil of abortion and the killing of a defenseless baby in the womb. People who are casual about the sin of abortion and who choose to view it as a political issue rather than the serious moral issue that it is are guilty of violating the Fifth Commandment. You cannot be “pro-choice” (pro-abortion) and remain a Catholic in good standing. That’s why the Church asks those who maintain this position not to receive holy Communion. We are not being mean or judgmental, we are simply acknowledging the fact that such a stance is objectively and seriously sinful and is radically inconsistent with the Christian way of life.
~ Most Rev. Robert J. Carlson, Archbishop of St. Louis, “Before the Cross: Good Catholics Cannot Be Pro-Choice,” St. Louis Review, July 6, 2010

Mother Teresa said that Christ comes to us in the distressing disguise of the poor. She also said that it is a terrible poverty that a child must die so that people might live as they wish. Taken together, I believe that the poorest of the poor are those whose poverty lies in the loss of a child. We should consider them the face of Christ in our lives and help them with a kind word, a listening ear, a healing embrace. Only love can overcome the tragedy of abortion, and that love must begin with each of us.
~ Carl Anderson, Supreme Knight, Knights of Columbus, Address at the 25th Anniversary Celebration of Project Rachel

I do not mean to say that caring for the elderly and others is not a burden. It can be, sometimes significantly so. I am saying that bearing this burden is so central to being human that if we run from the burden, we not only disrespect the elderly and vulnerable, we dehumanize ourselves.
~ William E. May, PhD, “On Being a Burden to One’s Family,” Culture of Life Foundation Briefs,March 26, 2010

Families with lots of children are no longer considered examples of generosity, but rather irresponsibility. [Our culture says that] children with severe disabilities are not special angels sent to us by God, but drains on the economy; better that they were not born. And the elderly are burdens. But if we succeed in pushing away everyone who is dependent, then we’re left with ourselves, our ego-centric, sin-rationalizing, defensive, irritable and vain selves. If we never learn to give till it hurts, till the painful reality that we’re not the center of the universe sinks in, we will fail at marriage, at parenthood, at citizenship, even at simple neighborliness.

~ William E. May, PhD, “On Being a Burden to One’s Family,” Culture of Life Foundation Briefs, March 26, 2010

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: