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Abortion and Euthanasia

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Introduction

Abortion and Euthanasia Section 1: T he Roman Catholic Church believes in the sanctity of life. With love at the centre of its teachings, they value each and every individual life given by God himself thus believing that all life is special and by no means must we, as humans, end this gift given to us by the Lord himself. However, in society today, people do sometimes opt for an alternative to this. Some of the most controversial issues today are the moral dilemmas of Abortion and Euthanasia, where life is ended to suit the needs of the person. Although as far as the Roman Catholic Church is concerned, life at all costs should be protected as mentioned by Pope Paul VI in the Humanae Vitae of 1968 "Human life is sacred.... All men must recognise that fact." In medical terms the word abortion means the termination of a pregnancy before the baby is born. This covers two natures of abortion though, spontaneous and induced: Spontaneous abortion, otherwise known as a miscarriage is when a foetus dies of natural causes inside the mother's womb but the definition of induced abortion is "the deliberate killing of the foetus" However, for anyone to begin to tackle the subject of 'induced' abortion one must look to one central and crucial question - when does life begin? ...read more.

Middle

There is a noticeable difference between "taking" and "allowing". While active euthanasia produces death, passive allows death to take place, where the person is not assisted to die but their life is not prolonged in any way beyond its 'natural life span'. It is mainly active euthanasia that comes under biblical scrutiny. The word "Euthanasia" originates from the Greek word meaning "good death". It sometimes known as "mercy killing" and cases of voluntary euthanasia are often associated with people who are hopelessly ill or injured and wish to hasten the relief of death. Although Euthanasia is illegal in the United Kingdom, there is still the on-going debate in the United Kingdom as to whether Euthanasia should be legalized or not. The stance the Roman Catholic Church takes on euthanasia is directly similar to their view on abortion. One clear and definite view - The Roman Catholic church condemns euthanasia absolutely as an act of murder and is therefore classified as a mortal sin. Under no circumstances should Catholics go against the will of God, for we were put on this earth for a purpose and only God decides whether it is our time yet to live or die, as emphasised in Corinthians "If we live; we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. ...read more.

Conclusion

Euthanasia I believe is a much harder issue to deal with. It is not simply killing, but killing moved on an act of compassion. Yet this is still morally wrong. I understand the difficulties there must be when placed in the situation of watching a loved one die in utter affliction or enduring the person's suffering myself, but one must realise that that suffering no matter how painful it seems, is but just a phase in our on-going journey to God and it was given to us for a reason. God placed us on this Earth to live as he intended us to in his image, for as long as he wishes us to live for. Also in the case of active euthanasia or suicide, even though people may not be in the best state of minds to realise what they are doing, strength should be sought from God, since death is not the abrupt end to everything. As we don't determine when we are born I do not think it right that we should determine when we die or decide death for another life for we do not own our own lives. We are, God's property for he, and only he, created us out of most powerful love ever imaginable. "Acknowledge that the Lord is God, he made us and we belong to him..." (Psalm 100:3) God has given us the greatest gift of all...who are we to throw it all away? ...read more.

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