Catholic Conference of Ohio
Friday, December 4, 2020

Issues - Catholic Conference of Ohio

Euthanasia & Assisted Suicide

 

Euthanasia is a direct action or omission of an action that is intended to cause death and so eliminate suffering. Assisted Suicide occurs when a physician, family member or some other person aids one in a voluntary decision for death and helps carry out these explicit wishes at the behest of the person who is choosing death.

Concern for the inalienable and inherent dignity of each person, especially the most vulnerable members of society, is the foundation of our opposition to the legalization of euthanasia and assisted suicide.

There is a substantive moral difference between foregoing treatment (thereby allowing one to die naturally from an underlying pathology), and an action that of itself or by intention causes death. Compassion for people in pain and suffering is better expressed by appropriate pain management, intelligent use of stated ethical principles regarding life-sustaining medical treatment and use of advance directives relating to health care decisions.


Resources on Euthanasia & Assisted Suicide

USCCB Resources on End of Life Issues

Assisted Suicide & Euthanasia
Stem Cell Research
Reproductive Technology

Resources

Catholic Conference of Ohio Reflection: Hopes and Fears; Pastoral Reflections on Death

Ethical and Religious Directives

Advance Directives


 

U. S. Bishops Approve Additions to Teaching Document on Political Responsibility

A short introductory letter and five short video scripts approved to supplement "Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship"

An introductory letter  addressing current issues of the day and references to the teachings of Pope Francis was approved by USCCB to supplement  the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' existing document, Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship. The letter affirms the "richness" that our faith brings to the public square, and addresses challenges that have become more pronounced:

"Pope Francis has continued to draw attention to important issues such as migration, xenophobia, racism, abortion, global conflict, and care for creation. In the United States and around the world, many challenges demand our attention.

The threat of abortion remains our preeminent priority because it directly attacks life itself, because it takes place within the sanctuary of the family, and because of the number of lives destroyed. At the same time, we cannot dismiss or ignore other serious threats to human life and dignity such as racism, the environmental crisis, poverty and the death penalty."

Introductory Letter

Introductory Letter References to Pope Francis' Apostolic Exhortation Rejoice and Be Glad #25, #101

2017 Respect Life Program Brochures on Suicide


Reasons to Oppose Assisted Suicide
PDF Version


Catholic Considerations for Our Earthly Passing
PDF Version

Governor Kasich Signs Bill that Further Strengthens State Prohibition of Assisted Suicide

"Assisting" made a third degree felony

HB 470 includes provisions that address assisted suicide. It reads: "(A)...No person shall knowingly cause another person to commit or attempt to commit suicide by doing either of the following: (1) Providing the physical means by which the other person commits or attempts to commit suicide; (2) Participating in a physical act by which the other person commits or attempts to commit suicide. (B) Whoever violates division (A) of this section is guilty of assisting suicide, a felony of the third degree." Section 3795.04

Ohio General Assembly Passes Pro-Life Legislation

Restrictions on abortion, efforts to decrease infant mortality and drug dependency, adoption assistance, summer food assistance, further help for victims of human trafficking among issues being sent to the Governor for signature

The Ohio General Assembly has passed and sent to the Governor various bills that protect and enhance human life.

Ohio Senate Passes MOLST (Medical Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment) Legislation

Catholic Conference takes a neutral position

The MOLST is a medical order form that documents important decisions regarding a person's health care.  The MOLST (or POLST in some states) is based on conversations between patients, their loved ones, and health care professionals.  It is intended to ensure that the wishes of a seriously ill patient or that person's legal representative are documented and honored. 

The MOLST form varies considerably from state to state. Our Conference has worked conscientiously with drafters of SB 165 to assure that Ohio's legislation is consistent with Church teaching, does not change existing Ohio law regarding end-of-life care, and addresses weaknesses found in MOLSTs passed in other states.

Senator Peggy Lehner, the pro-life sponsor of Ohio's SB 165, accepted recommendations from our Conference and Ohio Right to Life. These recommendations included strict anti-euthanasia/assisted suicide protections. While our Conference remains neutral, we believe the current version of SB 165 prudentially addresses these matters.

Catholic Conference of Ohio takes a neutral position on Ohio MOLST (Medical Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment) legislation

SB 165 deemed different from the MOLST's in other states

The MOLST is a medical order form that documents important decisions regarding a person’s health care.  The MOLST (or POLST in some states) is based on conversations between patients, their loved ones, and health care professionals.  It is intended to ensure that the wishes of a seriously ill patient or that person’s legal representative are documented and honored.  

The MOLST form varies considerably from state to state. Our Conference has worked conscientiously with drafters of SB 165 to assure that Ohio’s legislation is consistent with Church teaching, does not change existing Ohio law regarding end-of-life care, and addresses weaknesses found in MOLSTs passed in other states.

Senator Peggy Lehner, sponsor of Ohio’s SB 165, accepted recommendations from our Conference and Ohio Right to Life. These recommendations included strict anti-euthanasia/assisted suicide protections. While our Conference remains neutral, we believe the current version of SB 165 prudentially addresses these matters.

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