Skip to comments.IF NOT IN LIFE, GIVE US TERRI IN DEATH, KIN BEG HUBBY IN FUNERAL FIGHT
Posted on 03/28/2005 6:43:57 AM PST by NYer
Terri Schiavo's husband is set to inflict what her grieving relatives charge is the final insult: insisting that her body be cremated against their religious wishes and then buried in his own family's plot.
"They would like to have her body so they can have a Christian Mass and a Christian burial," said Brother Paul O'Donnell, the spiritual adviser to the deeply Roman Catholic family.
"They want their daughter. If they can't have her in life, they would hope he'd have compassion and give her in death."
But Michael Schiavo refused to budge on the extremely emotional issue as his tragic wife lay dying nine days after the courts sided with him and ordered her feeding tube removed.
His lawyer, George Felos, cited one court order earlier this month that granted him the right to cremate her, despite her anguished parents' and siblings' wishes.
"That's what the court has ordered," Felos said. "This was challenged prior to the removal of the feeding tube, and it will happen because that's what the court has ordered."
As with the feeding-tube removal, Mary and Bob Schindler had fought against their son-in-law in his bid to cremate their daughter's body once she dies.
They said they want to bury her in Florida instead of having her cremated and interred in the Schiavo family plot in Pennsylvania.
While O'Donnell appeared to keep his words measured over the simmering dispute, another family spokesman, Randall Terry, was more direct about his feelings for Michael Schiavo.
"He's a despicable swine for doing that," Terry said of Schiavo's cremation plans.
(Excerpt) Read more at nypost.com ...
The Catholic Church's practice of burial goes back to early Christian days. A strong belief in the body as the temple of the Holy Spirit, as well as the belief in the resurrection of the body, support the Church's continued reverence for the human body. From early Christian days cremation was viewed as a pagan practice and a denial of the doctrine of the Resurrection. That's why cremation was expressly forbidden by the Catholic Church until recent years.
In 1963, an Instruction from the Holy Office (now the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith) lifted the ban on cremation by allowing it in certain circumstances provided that the reasons for choosing cremation were not contrary to Christian belief. However, burial of the body was clearly to be preferred. No allowance was made for any prayer or ritual to be used with the cremated remains. In other words, all services were to be in the presence of the body of the deceased, with cremation allowed only afterwards.
In the revised funeral rites of 1969, Ordo Exsequiarum, mandated by Vatican II, a further step was taken to allow for the Committal Rite to take place at the crematorium or grave site: "Funeral rites are to be granted to those who have chosen cremation, unless there is evidence that their choice was dictated by anti-Christian motives....The funeral is to be celebrated...in a way that clearly expresses the Church's preference for burying the dead...that forestalls any danger of scandalizing or shocking the faithful" (#15). The presumption was that the funeral Mass would be celebrated in the presence of the body with cremation held off until later.
In the 1983 revision of the Code of Canon Law, the traditional practice was reinforced. "The Church earnestly recommends that the pious custom of burying the bodies of the dead be observed; it does not, however, forbid cremation unless it has been chosen for reasons which are contrary to Christian teaching" (Canon 1176).
The further revised funeral rites, Order of Christian Funerals, in use since 1989, maintain this tradition of preference for burial of the body: "Since in Baptism the body was marked with the seal of the Trinity and became the temple of the Holy Spirit, Christians respect and honor the bodies of the dead and the places where they rest..." (#19).
A threefold ritual
The Order of Christian Funerals prescribes three separate and ideally sequential rites to celebrate the journey of the deceased from this life to the next. This movement or progression of rites can be helpful to the mourners going through this period of separation and letting go of their loved one.
The principal celebration is the funeral liturgy, which is typically a Mass. Two smaller celebrations also take place. The vigil for the deceased is a short prayer service during the time following death and before the funeral liturgy. It usually takes place at the funeral home. The rite of committal is a short prayer service at the cemetery, ideally beside the open grave or place of interment. Both of these short services include Scripture, prayers and possibly songs. The ideal sequence of these three funeral rites is vigil, funeral Mass, then committal.
Up to this time, with cremated remains banned from church, the only way to solve the problems created by immediate cremation (cremation before the funeral) was to reverse the order of these rituals, that is, have the rite of committal (burial) at the cemetery first and then have a memorial Mass. However, committing the remains for burial prior to the funeral liturgy often does not satisfy the need for the mourners to have something of the deceased present when gathering for the final farewell. The prayers of the funeral liturgy praise and thank God for the gift of this person's life whom we are now commending to God, as well as being a source of hope for all of the living.
In the United States up until 1997, the Order of Christian Funerals clearly indicated that if cremation had been chosen, cremated remains were not to be brought into church for the funeral Mass. Even now this is permitted only in cases where special circumstances warrant it and the bishop approves. The reasoning is that the funeral rites are intended to honor the body of the deceased.
It was the body which felt the waters of Baptism, was marked with the oil of salvation and nourished by the Bread of Life. The sprinkling of the casket with holy water and the draping with the white pall are reminders of Baptism. The body is the incarnation of the presence of God in the world, the temple of the Holy Spirit. There is a substantial difference between the body of the deceased and cremated remains. The Church's thinking has rightly been that we cannot just substitute one for the other and expect our rituals and prayers to carry the same meaning.
Yet ashes and bone chips that remain after cremation are somethingthere is a real connection between them and the body. So why not have them present to remind us of the one whose life we are celebrating? As sacramental people we need the "stuff" of the senses around us to help us get in touch with the deeper reality. After all, these cremated remains bear the imprint of the first creation when they were fashioned from dust. The traditional Ash Wednesday formula says it well: "Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return." Catholics can easily make the connection between these remains and the body of the person they knew and loved.
There is no problem with this if cremation is to take place after the funeral Mass. A rite of committal for cremains (cremated remains) is provided as an alternative in the current funeral rite. The difficulty arises when cremation is done before the funeralas in the earlier case of the retired Michigan man who died in Florida. Yet in dioceses whose bishops choose not to allow funeral Masses in the presence of cremated remains, a reversal of the rites is one solution for a less-than-ideal situation.
Here is how that might work for a diocese that will not be making the changes. For example, a person dies a few days after a critical auto accident far from home. In the days before death, the family determines that cremation will be the only feasible option. A vigil rite could be celebrated at the deathbed using the final commendation (a prayer of farewell) over the body at this time. This is the final commendation that is usually at the end of the funeral Mass, asking the Lord to accept the deceased into paradise. Then, after the body is cremated, the rite of committal would be used at the place of burial.
Following the committal all would come to church for the funeral liturgy, without the body present.
There is no way that MRS will back down on anything: he has the support of the American people. Plus he does not want the sheeple to see the emaciated body of Terri. Even with a traditional closed-casket funeral, somehow photos of her emaciated state will leak out and discredit the popular Schiavo. Besides, don't you know?, that Terri "demanded" cremation. And he just wants to "carry out her wishes."
This too is a lost cause, sadly.
It sure looks like he is trying to destroy evidence.
I would imagine that the owner of the crematorium will do this job himself: no employees will be involved at all, for fear of one snapping a picture and selling it to a tabloid. However, the tabloids, like their sheeple readers, have shown no interest in Terri thus far.
Not so much evidence perhaps (an autopsy would be disputed by MRS if it were adverse to him, and the people would believer MRS) but he must keep emaciated pictures out of print.
of Operation Rescue fame ?
Makes you wonder, if he's got no ulterior motives, why won't he respect the parents' wishes? Gee, what could he be trying to hide?? Argh....
You are probably right. I was wondering to myself what crematorium would actually do this? But then, I wondered what doctors, nurses, staff, etc. would actually assist in letting her starve. Apparently there is a large contigent of people out there that believe because it's all legal, it's ok.
I keep saying it's like the Taliban are running the country. It's legal to beat the women to death, or shoot them in the head, the law is being followed! Who are we to condemn it? We do the same thing here. Makes me shake my head.
The parents have no case.
It is unfortunate, but no court is going to award them custody of the body. Especially after the spectacle the courts made of ensuring that Terri would die, against all standards of morality, and the spirit of the laws regarding the right to life cited within our Declaration of Independence as being inherent to our being.
I bet there's going to be no autopsy, and I doubt that Jeb has any power to order an autopsy... but cremation of the body as if he's has something to hide... I seriously think that Michael Schiavo is either extremely possessive, or that he is somehow guilty of something that he wants to hide.
I suspect he just hates his inlaws, and he'd do anything and everything to spite them, including killing their daughter, and then denying them the comfort of seeing to her final rest.
Well you can ask the same question at abortion mills. The american people have lost their souls.
I absolutely agree!
Notice how Felos attempts to depersonalize all of this. Someone had to make the request to the almighty "court." I would suppose it was Schiavo through his attorney, Felos. The sense one gets is that we are allowing God to be replaced by the courts, though, ultimately, that can't be done.
I also heard his lawyer, Filo, say that Terri would have wanted him to shack up with the other woman..That she would have wanted "his happiness."
Too busy fighting for the rights of lesbians, bi-sexual, transgendered and confussed womyn while blaiming Bush.
I have always thought that it is a mistake for parents to pay off mortgages of grown children. Doing so always seems to have bad repercussions, often leading to marital breakups.
Of course, in this case the marriage was presumably about to end, and then the collapse! This is the first that I had heard of the Schlinders paying off the Schiavo mortgage. I had thought that Terri and MRS were in an apartment that Mr. Schindler owned.
I think MRS' extermination of Terri could be his way of saying "No divorce" to poor Terri.
Just seems so vindictive. If I were his mistress, I would have had second thoughts long before now.
gotta wonder about how all this seems to work like clockwork.
gotta wonder about how all this seems to work like clockwork.
Michael Schiavo's actions are motivated by spite. He hasn't had Terri's best interest in mind from day one. It's my opinion that he thought he'd be able to pocket the malpractice money if he could just get her to die. The Schindler's threw a monkey wrench in his plans when they took steps through the courts to keep Terri alive. As time went on and Michael saw his nest egg dwindle through lawyer's fees, his hostility and anger towards the Schindler's increased tenfold. The final spiteful act, besides murdering Terri, is having her remains cremated and placed in his family's cemetery plot in Pennsylvania. Since he hasn't been a regular visitor while she's been alive, I can hardly fathom him visiting her after her death. His goal is vindictiveness by denying the Schindler's their daughter in both life and death, because they denied him his moola.
Not on their lives. He is afraid of something being found out. I will be utterly shocked if he allows this. He's going to say "OK I already gave in on the communion thing, what more do they want? They're still being unreasonable! I'm clean and pure as the wind driven snow!"
I know this is biased, but I truly believe MS is an rotten human being that needs to avoid lightening storms for the rest of his life.
Terri Schiavo's estranged husband has ordered her body immediately cremated, with no autopsy, against her parents' pleadings. Do you approve of this?
It must be clear to all by now --even to those who believe that Terri feels nothing-- that Michael Schiavo has been unspeakably cruel to the Schindlers.
Schiavo's cruelty hasn't just manifested itself now, but has been clear over the course of many years.
According to an article in USAToday, the origin of this hatred began when Schiavo and the Schindlers had a major blow-up, soon after the medical settlement money came in.
The Schindlers say that Schiavo, who had promised to use that settlement money for therapy for Terri --and had promised to use it for a house where they would all live and take care of Terri together-- suddenly reneged on those promises.
When Mr. Schindler confronted Schiavo over that, Schiavo reportedly screamed, "You'll never see your daughter again!"
Of course Schiavo was not able to completely carry through on that threat.
But he has made the primary purpose of his life the punishment of the Schindlers for daring to challenge him over their daughter.
Several family acquaintances have described Schiavo a "control freak." What an understatement.
Schiavo must bitterly regret that at least some of this situation has now spun out of his control -- if only in that the case has come under such scrutiny that he can no longer keep all of the truth from coming out.
A tiny bit of justice in this is that Schiavo will never have a moment's peace for the rest of his life.
< I suspect he just hates his inlaws, and he'd do anything and everything to spite them, including killing their daughter, and then denying them the comfort of seeing to her final rest. >
I suspect that you are exactly right.
MS is lower than pond scum. If he really is doing this out of love and commitment to Terri, does he really think that she would want her parents hurt this way? He doesn't give a flyin' fig about Terri. This is all about MS and what HE wants (whatever the reason).
< A tiny bit of justice in this is that Schiavo will never have a moment's peace for the rest of his life. >
Which is why I'm glad he doesn't have a common last name. He will be remembered and recognized.
BTW, does anyone know how long they were married when this "accident" happened?
Is there any way for law enforcement to say that they want an autopsy and be able to trump Greer's order for immediate cremation? Greer snubbed a congressional subpoena. He thinks that he is above it all. I would like to see them all in a lot of trouble for this.
Since the conflicts have been brought out in this case, primarily Felos and his firm being financial supporters of Greer. Can Felos and Greer be brought before the Bar's ethics committee and possibly be disbarred?
Because your post is addressed to me, it implies that I have said something about "polls". I have not.
In the interest of "fair-play" I always try to address a particular poster with my answer or I address the original poster if my answer is "in general".
Sorry. Forgive me. It's a pet peeve.
You were last in the list. I meant to change that to "All" and forgot. :) Wasn't directed at you specifically.
In this case, Michael has stated many times that he was offered $10 million to walk away, and leave Terri for her family to care for. Lets look at this:
First, if indeed we accept that he had made some very fine attempts at caring for Terri, and finally felt he could do no more, he could have gone on with his life knowing he did his best. He had made a new life with another woman and children, he truly was not honoring all of his vows to Terri, so why hold onto some offhanded comment she might have made?
Still, no one would have faulted him and I don't know about others, but I certainly would have taken $10 million dollars, and felt that to not do so would have been senseless. After all, with $10 million the medical cost issue could have been totally resolved, and the U.S would not be paying for her care. MS could have kept $5 million for himself, and put $5 million in a trust fund for Terris care. Then, while with her parents as guardians and as therapy was allowed to continue, she might have regained some abilities i.e. the ability to swallow. She no longer would be "living hooked up to machines," as Michael claimes she mentioned. She could, perhaps, exist without a feeding tube, thus the issue would have become moot. She may have lived a reduced quality of life, but she would be living. It is the feeding tube, and the fact that she (might have) said she did not want to be hooked up to anything to maintain her life that was the main issue with Michael.
The money he could have accepted certainly would have allowed for the best of care for her. Truly that amount of money could have served them both very well.
But, it seems, the thought of this either did not enter Michaels mind, or - what seems more obvious - is that he determined not to take the chance of her recovering for some as yet unknown reason, relating possibly to how she came to be in this state in the first place.
If, on the other hand , with her family hand-feeding her, or therapists or nurses, and with therapy she still did not regain that ability to eat, then she could have died a natural death that would have been Gods decision, and not the decision of Michael and the judge.
Also make you wonder, if the parents have no ulterior motives, why won't they respect the husband's wishes? Regardless of how you feel about the Terri Schaivo case, it is his wife and Michael has the final say. Otherwise, do you believe parents have a stronger legal voice that a spouse?
After all that has happened I doubt that Schiavo has any compassion left for his inlaws.
I understand and figured such, but, like I said, it's a pet peeve. Usually I leave it alone when no real harm is done, as in this case...don't knnow why I didn't let this one go. I really don't like it when it involves an implied attrition that I would never in my right mind be associated.
Thanks for the acknowledgement.
Methinks he just wants to make sure there is no autopsy.
I, too, have wondered about the complicity of these medical people, but have also wondered about the cops and other law enforcement people who seem perfectly willing to make overtime pay handcuffing little kids who try to cross the line to bring so much as a taste of water to the victim. Were they all pre-screened for objections based on morality and/or conscience? Or were they told that no such objections would keep them from losing their jobs? Or have we all fallen so low that people accept the notion voiced by Reverend Lovejoy on The Simpsons that, "once the government declares something to be no longer illegal, then it's also no longer immoral"?
No, actually, this may help the political case. If Terri can't be saved, at least this will reveal the true horror of Michael Schiavo.
I'm not so sure about that. MS isn't as popular as you assume. I was talking with my mom last night (she's one of those people you refer to as "sheeple" - that kind of underestimation has cost the dems a lot of support) and she wasn't the least bit enamoured with MS or his freaky lawyer. Remember, most of the polls were slanted and bogus and just because majority of people weren't aware of Terri and her family's plight until it became a major news story doesn't mean they don't understand the issues or their importance. My mom is a pretty typical yuppie baby boomer who usually gets her news from a half hour of an alphabet network and a half hour of the local affiliate and an occasional dose of O'Reilly on the radio & she loves Oprah and Dr. Phil, but she knew about the injustice of denying Terri communion. She was appalled that her constitutional freedom to worship (regardless of her condition) was so easily violated. MS's insistence on cremating Terri and moving her far away from her family pretty much erased any sympathy she had for him. Both of these she considered disgusting, but also thought it was awful that such a private tragedy would be played out so publicly. Because she has grown children herself, she identified with the Schindlers and thought MS, his lawyer and Judge Greer were being unnecessarily cruel. Like a lot of people, she grapples with the quality of life issue, but understood the judiciary was over-reaching. Average Americans understand more than you realize.
You raise an interesting point? I am not sure how I feel about that question. Actually, right now I am thinking an equal say between spouse and parent might be at the most fair. It's hard to imagine that once my children are married that I am no longer considered 'family' and no longer will have any standing on the care of my child, in the eyes of some courts anyway. I would consider myself at least equal to the spouse in wanting only the best for my child. Especially if the spouse has moved on with his/her life and had a couple kids by a new partner. Spouse trumping parents without question is not something I am totally comfortable with in life and death matters.
It seems your mom exhibits some common sense,,IMHO.
< Also make you wonder, if the parents have no ulterior motives, why won't they respect the husband's wishes? Regardless of how you feel about the Terri Schaivo case, it is his wife and Michael has the final say. Otherwise, do you believe parents have a stronger legal voice that a spouse? >
I think what the parents are doing is out of love for their daughter AND suspicions of the son-in-law's motive. Under different circumstances, I would whole-heartedly agree with you and the law. However, there are too many questions here to just go ahead with anything the husband says. There are reasons to be suspicious.
I say err on the side of life. That's not to say surrender to the feelings of the parents. It's saying choose life, at least til it's all exposed and sorted out...not with info from 7 years ago, but anew. Let's go with what we have now.
All these court decisions are based on old info. The courts have refused to look at anything new. I see nothing wrong with questioning the court at this point. Something smells very bad.
...with each denial he issues, Michael Schavio is looking more and more suspect in the public's eye.....I hope he keeps this up....even the MSM will have to ask questions...but I'm not holding my breath...
As hideous as it, this has been a wakeup call for more people than we may know. It'll probably take a 2x4 to get them the rest of the way into the kingdom, but it's a start.
The SOB didn't even know Terri personally. How would he know what she would have wanted?
Boy, do I agree with what you just posted.
My sister is just like your mother. She has no exposure to FR , internet or cable. Her world is the alphabet channels and Dr. Phil and Oprah. She felt it was just an awkward circumstance that should not be played out in public. Even though it finally happened, when she first heard that he was denying communion she did a 180. Yesterday when I told her about the court order already written for cremation she was incensed.