Dear Brothers & Sisters,
This week we have a very important pro-life message. As I wrote last week, the term “Pro-Life” includes all issues regarding life, from conception to natural death and anything in between. In this year in which we dedicated to St. Joseph, we are called to be protectors of Life, especially those who are vulnerable. This week I would like to call your attention regarding a new bill that soon will be up for vote regarding Physician Assisted Suicide. Please read the important message below from all the Bishops from Massachusetts. I, personally, believe that people need companionship and support in harsh moments, and not to end their pain. Recently with Fr Przemek, we witnessed a miracle of a couple who truly reconciled after almost 20 years of total disagreement. It only happened due to his pain on his deathbed. And there are many graces (and miracles) that happen in these moments, where we can unite our suffering to that of Christ, and, therefore, prepare ourselves for heaven.
LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD
Say NO to Physician Assisted Suicide
The Massachusetts State Legislature is considering passing into law two deeply troubling bills this session which would legalize Physician Assisted Suicide. The bills, House 2381 and Senate 1384, are identical in text and titled “An Act relative to end of life options”.
“The Catholic Bishops of Massachusetts stand united in our strong opposition to Physician Assisted Suicide. It is an affront to life and a dangerous precedent for determining end of life issues. Physicians are trained to care for the ill, not to hasten death.”1
Here are some facts to consider before you take action:
The bills would allow a physician to provide a deadly drug mixture to an individual diagnosed with less than 6 months to live that, when consumed, would cause death.
NOTE- That diagnosis could be wrong. Countless individuals have outlived that 6 month diagnosis and enjoyed many more precious months and years with family and friends.
No Real Safeguards - A vulnerable individual (who could be depressed or fears being a “burden”) may be subject to undue influence by others to take the drug mixture, especially if there is a financial benefit as an incentive.
The primary focus of elected officials should be dedicated to legislation providing quality health care, mental health care and palliative care to the sick and dying – particularly in the underserved, poor and minority communities that suffer the most at the time of need.
How can your voice be heard?
Call or email your legislators, let them know you are a Massachusetts voter, and say NO Physician Assisted Suicide! Log on to www.macatholic.org and follow the links to find contact information for:
Your individual State Senator and Representative via address and zip code link.
Members of the legislative Joint Committee on Public Health who will be considering these bills.
For individuals without internet access, please call the Massachusetts Catholic Conference at 617-746-5630 for legislative contact information.
Boston Pilot - Statement of the four Roman Catholic Bishops of Boston, Fall River, Springfield, and Worcester (December 8, 2017)
Father Steven Clemence