Catholic Values Column: Pope Francis’ call to doctors


Addressing a group of Catholic doctors, Pope Francis told them that “playing with life” by practicing abortion and euthanasia is sinful, emphasizing that human life, no matter the condition, is sacred.

“We are living in a time of experimentation with life. But a bad experiment … (we’re) playing with life,” said Pope Francis. The pope was speaking to an audience of 4,000 Catholic doctors assembled in the Vatican’s Paul VI Hall on Nov. 15th.

“Be careful, because this is a sin against the Creator: against God the Creator,” he continued.

This speech was in commemoration and celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Italian Catholic Doctors Association.

Pope Francis discussed how in his many years of priesthood he has witnessed many people objecting to the Church’s stance on life issues. Specifically, many question why the Church remains firm in her stance against abortion.

In response to this query, the pope said that, even with the progression of modern thought, killing another human being is still wrong and will always be wrong.

“In ancient thought and in modern thought, the word ‘kill’ means the same!”

“(And) the same goes for euthanasia,” he said, stating that as a result, “this culture of waste, a hidden euthanasia is practiced on the elderly.”

USA Today reports that “Pope Francis denounced the right to die movement Saturday, saying it’s a ‘false sense of compassion’ to consider euthanasia as an act of dignity when in fact it’s a sin against God and creation.”

In addition to addressing abortion, Pope Francis also discussed in vitro fertilization.

“This is playing with life,” he said. “Beware, because this is a sin against the Creator, against God the Creator.”

Pope Francis encouraged partnership with others of different religions, endeavoring to keep seeking to further the dignity of the human being as the basic condition of their work. He also said that people must follow the Gospel’s call to love others at all times, particularly when special need is present.

“No human life exists that is more sacred than the other, just like there is no human life qualitatively more significant than another solely in virtue of resources, rights, economic opportunities and higher social status,” said Pope Francis.