good stuff in this University Conference.
Cardinal Arinze Decries Word Games in
Conference Covers Contraception, Research,
ROYAL, Virginia, JULY 13, 2011 (Zenit.org).-
The retired president of the Congregation
for Divine Worship and the Sacraments
says a spade should be called a spade
in the abortion debate.
Cardinal Francis Arinze said this Saturday
at a one-day conference on bioethics
hosted by Christendom College and featuring
the cardinal, as well as Bishop Robert
Morlino of Madison, Wisconsin, Janet
Smith and Father Tadeusz Pacholczyk.
Cardinal Arinze observed how fundamental
human rights are inviolable because
they are given by God and are inherent
in the human person.
a person is killed, of what use are
all the other rights to him or her?"
people say, 'I am personally opposed
to abortion, but I will not impose my
view on others.' It is like saying,
'Some people want to shoot all of you
in the Senate and the House of Representatives,
but I won't impose my views on them.
It's pro-choice for them.'"
it not highly illogical for some people
to talk of some whales, and the chimpanzees,
and trees as 'endangered species' which
must be preserved -- and if you torture
a dog in some countries you will be
brought to court for your cruelty to
animals -- while the killing of unborn
babies is labeled 'pro-choice' instead
of what it is: murder?
Call a spade a spade."
and speaker Janet Smith then addressed
the topic of contraception. Using the
philosophy of personalism found in Blessed
John Paul II's theology of the body,
Smith explained the damaging effects
of contraception on the marital relationship.
marital relations with a person and
to not be open to having a child with
that person would be to deny the reality
that sexual intercourse leads to lifetime
relationships," she said.
"This is meant to be something
that you rejoice in, not as something
you see as a punishment for having marital
Tadeusz Pacholczyk of the National Catholic
Bioethics Center addressed the issue
of embryonic stem cell research.
Hollywood hype, scientific curiosity
and lucrative research patens are what
keep the destruction of embryos for
stem cells funded and active, he said.
Father Pacholczyk pointed out
the irony of a 1940 U.S. law that protects
not only the bald eagle, but the bald
eagle's egg. "If we can see that
destroying a bald eagle's egg is just
as bad as destroying a bald eagle, why
can't we see the same thing when it
comes to human life?" he
Morlino followed with a presentation
on natural law and end of life discussions.
"Every case of a terminally ill
or close-to-natural-death person is
unique," Bishop Morlino said, "and
somebody has got to get in there with
the physicians and know the whole story."
"The assessments are not that hard
to make," Bishop Morlino said.
"It's the pastoral communication
that is so difficult. If the person
does not feel like a burden in anybody's
eyes and is not a burden in anybody's
eyes, the pastoral approach to the communication
of the truth is much easier."
the conference to a close Lorna Cvetkovich
of the Tepeyac Family Center discussed
the challenges facing Catholics who
"In our society 80% of women have
been on birth control pills. If you
are over 35 and have one child there
is a 50%-60% chance that you've been
sterilized, and the rate of IVF pregnancies
just goes up and up every single year,"
Cvetkovich said. "We have a lot
to contend with."
She explained that Catholic medical
professionals do not only need to worry
about reproductive health issues, but
good business and research practices.
A challenge for the medical profession
is to understand and recognize when
ideology has trumped our scientific
"A lot of
data and research has shown that abortion
does increase the risk of breast cancer,"
she noted. "Why is there this cover
up? In the past we could trust that
people had the intent to do good research."
Cvetkovich said she fears for the
future of Catholic medicine. "We
will have the choice to either practice
anti-Hippocratic, pro-choice type medicine
and keep our jobs or practice Hippocratic,
Catholic, pro-life medicine and lose
to me to live is Christ, and to die is
gain." (Phil 1:21)