Crossed The Tiber

An Evangelical Converts to Catholicism

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Location: Pennsylvania, United States

I was born into the Catholic faith. At 14, I was "born again" and found Jesus personally but lost His Church. After thirty years as an evangelical protestant, I have come full circle to find that He has been there all the time, in the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. I wish others to find the beauty and truth of the Catholic faith as I have found.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

"No Kill" Nursing Homes

I just discovered that the senator for our region of Pennsylvania, Lisa Boscola, co-sponsored a senate bill 404 that will legalize physician assisted suicide if it is eventually passed. What this will mean is that if grandma is diagnosed with "terminal cancer" and wishes to end her life, she can ask the kind family doctor for a prescription cocktail that will end her life.

The Hippocratic Oath which I took in 1985 makes me promise to not give anyone something that would end their life, nor counsel them on how to do it. Most western cultures have prohibited suicide and have laws against it. Both Christian and Jewish theologians have understood suicide to be a grave moral evil. Now in our enlightened age, we are going to change the rules and say it's ok to kill grandma or grandpa. Giving a patient a prescription to end their life is no different than me (a physician) going to K Mart and buying a shotgun and shells, sawing off the barrel for convenience and leaving it at the doorstep of my suffering patient so they can end their life.
Does anybody have a problem with this?

I am the medical director of two nursing homes and oversee the care of over 200 frail elderly patients. I spend my day attempting to alleviate the pain and suffering that is often experienced in the end stages of life. It is not usually easy, but often labor intensive and emotionally draining at times. However, I view it as my privilege to be entrusted to care for the most vulnerable of our society and would want no other job. But is if this bill becomes law, some will view it as cheaper and more convenient to encourage patients to end their life. The value of a older suffering person's life will drop faster than the stock market as it has in the European countries that have embraced PAS and Euthanasia

I am thinking of asking the administrators of my nursing homes to designate them as "No Kill Nursing Homes" just as they do with dog shelters, so the patients can be assured that they will be cared for and not put out of their misery. How can the hand that heals also be the hand that kills? How will patients trust me?

The fact that most people I have spoken to in the medical profession have no idea that this bill was proposed back in March is frightening. This is not unintentional. Will we be the next Oregon or Washington state?
In the next several months I am hoping to organize some effort to educate those around us to Physician Assisted Suicide and hopefully, by the time the bill is put up for a vote, or a public referendum, the public should be well-informed of this evil. The trick is to get to the public before the well-oiled and funded euthanasia lobbying machine gets to our legislators. Let your senators and representatives know how you feel about this.

If you wish to let SenatorLisa Boscola (Lehigh Valley Region) know about your feelings towards this bill and her co-sponsorship of it, email her at:


Blogger Jeff Pinyan (japhy) said...

We talked about this on Friday. You showed me the Prayer of Surrender and I honed in on these words:

"Lead me away from dwelling on the hurt I feel: to thoughts of charity for those who need my love, to thoughts of compassion for those who need my care, and to thoughts of giving to those who need my help."

People who support "mercy [sic] killing", physician-assisted suicide, and euthanasia -- and, as an aside, notice how we've gotten away from the words "kill" and "suicide" and obfuscated the whole concept with a word that sounds ethereal and fanciful: "euthanasia" -- these people think they're acting with compassion towards the sick and the dying. I think some of these people are actually incapable of compassion, because they are self-oriented and opposed to any sort of suffering whatsoever.

Because that's what compassion is! It means "to suffer/endure with," from the Latin com- (with) and passio (suffering). If someone has a terminal disease, it is absolutely contrary to compassion to help them die.

July 09, 2009 9:32 AM  
Blogger Tara said...

Does not "MD" stand for minor diety? I think our whole society is so afraid to suffer ANY discomfort--so in order to end suffering--let people die instead? Crazy, we are not God, minor or major, we do not decide.

I think making your nursing homes "kill free" (even just saying those words is freaky)--would give comfort to your patients.

July 09, 2009 5:25 PM  
Blogger Tiber Jumper said...

"Because that's what compassion is! It means "to suffer/endure with," from the Latin com- (with) and passio (suffering). If someone has a terminal disease, it is absolutely contrary to compassion to help them die."

Excellent point Jeff!

July 09, 2009 5:39 PM  
Blogger Joyful Catholics said...

Like I posted's all about power and control over the people for the elites - this HELLth care agenda of our President is EVIL.

July 15, 2009 9:12 PM  

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