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Outrage as Church backs calls for severely disabled babies to be killed at birth
Daily Mail ^ | 12 Nov 06 | Neil Sears

Posted on 11/12/2006 5:21:18 PM PST by xzins

The Church of England has broken with tradition dogma by calling for doctors to be allowed to let sick newborn babies die.

Christians have long argued that life should preserved at all costs - but a bishop representing the national church has now sparked controversy by arguing that there are occasions when it is compassionate to leave a severely disabled child to die.

And the Bishop of Southwark, Tom Butler, who is the vice chair of the Church of England's Mission and Public Affairs Council, has also argued that the high financial cost of keeping desperately ill babies alive should be a factor in life or death decisions.

The shock new policy from the church has caused outrage among the disabled.

A spokeswoman for the UK Disabled People's Council, which represents tens of thousands of members in 140 different organisations, said: "How can the Church of England say that Christian compassion includes killing of disabled babies either through the withdrawing or withholding of treatment or by active euthanasia?

"It is not for doctors or indeed anyone else to determine whether a baby’s life is worthwhile simply on the grounds of impairment or health condition."

The church's surprise call comes just a week after the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecology sparked fury by calling for a debate on the mercy killing of disabled infants.

But it has been made in a carefully thought out official Church of England paper written by Bishop Butler for a public inquiry into the ethical issues surrounding the care of long premature or desperately ill newborn babies.

The inquiry, by the Nuffield Council on Bioethics, began two years ago and its findings are due to be published in London - but the church's contribution to the debate has been leaked in advance.

The Nuffield Council, an independent body which issues ethical guidelines for doctors, began the inquiry to take account of scientific advances which mean increasingly disabled and premature babies can technically be kept alive.

In practice, doing so can be controversial - with the three months premature Charlotte Wyatt a case in point.

The Portsmouth baby weighed just 1lb at birth, and had severe brain and lung damage. Doctors wanted to be allowed to leave her to die, but her parents successfully campaigned through the courts against them.

Now that the child is three, however, and could be cared for at home, her parents have separated and are considered unsuitable to look after. In future cases doctors may work to guidelines proposed by the Nuffield inquiry.

In the Church of England's contribution to the inquiry, Bishop Butler wrote: "It may in some circumstances be right to choose to withold or withdraw treatment, knowing it will possibly, probably, or even certainly result in death."

The church stressed that it was not saying some lives were not worth living, but said there were "strong proportionate reasons" for "overriding the presupposition that life should be maintained".

The bishop's submission continued: "There may be occasions where, for a Christian, compassion will override the 'rule' that life should inevitably be preserved.

"Disproportionate treatment for the sake of prolonging life is an example of this.

The church said it would support the potentially fatal withdrawal of treatment only if all alternatives had been considered, "so that the possibly lethal act would only be performed with manifest reluctance."

Yet the Revd Butler's submission makes clear that there are a wide range of acceptable reasons to withdraw care from a child - with the cost of the care among the considerations.

"Great caution should be exercised in brining questions of cost into the equation when considering what treatment might be provided," he wrote.

"The principle of justice inevitably means that the potential cost of treatment itself, the longer term costs of health care and education and opportunity cost to the NHS in terms of saving other lives have to be considered."

The church also urges all the parties involved in care for critically ill babies should be realistic in their expectations, demands, and claims.

The submission says: "The principle of humility asks that members of the medical profession restrain themselves from claiming greater powers to heal than they can deliver.

"It asks that parents restrain themselves from demanding the impossible.":

UK Disabled Peoples Council spokeswoman Simone Aspis said the group's members were appalled that the Church was joining doctors in calling for disabled babies to be left to die.

"It appears that the whole debate on whether disabled babies are worth keeping alive is being dominated by professionals and religious people without any consultation with disabled people," she said.

Out of babies born at just 22 weeks of pregnancy or less, 98 per cent currently die. In Holland babies born before 25 weeks are not given medial treatment.


TOPICS: Front Page News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: abortion; anglican; church; ecusa; infanticide; prolife; protestants
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1 posted on 11/12/2006 5:21:27 PM PST by xzins
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To: P-Marlowe; blue-duncan; Salvation; NYer; Kolokotronis; Dr. Eckleburg; OrthodoxPresbyterian; ...
The church stressed that it was not saying some lives were not worth living, but said there were "strong proportionate reasons" for "overriding the presupposition that life should be maintained".

The bishop's submission continued: "There may be occasions where, for a Christian, compassion will override the 'rule' that life should inevitably be preserved.

"Disproportionate treatment for the sake of prolonging life is an example of this.

The church said it would support the potentially fatal withdrawal of treatment only if all alternatives had been considered, "so that the possibly lethal act would only be performed with manifest reluctance."

2 posted on 11/12/2006 5:22:50 PM PST by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and proud of it! Supporting our troops means praying for them to WIN!)
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To: xzins

So God's Will and His Greater Plan be damned, is that it?


3 posted on 11/12/2006 5:23:16 PM PST by Tanniker Smith (I didn't know she was a liberal when I married her.)
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To: xzins; MadIvan; snugs; Aussie Dasher; All

This is for Brit and Aussie Freepers how mighty Church that Henry VIII founded has fallen


4 posted on 11/12/2006 5:24:26 PM PST by SevenofNine ("Step aside Jefe"=Det Lennie Briscoe)
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To: Tanniker Smith
The church stressed that it was not saying some lives were not worth living, but said there were "strong proportionate reasons" for "overriding the presupposition that life should be maintained".

What would they have done with the man born blind in the Gospel of John?

5 posted on 11/12/2006 5:24:58 PM PST by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and proud of it! Supporting our troops means praying for them to WIN!)
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To: xzins

Done their best to thwart God's plan as Satan always has.


6 posted on 11/12/2006 5:26:05 PM PST by kuma (Mark Sanford '08 http://www.petitiononline.com/msan2008/petition.html)
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To: MadIvan

Being on that side of the pond, what's your take on this?


7 posted on 11/12/2006 5:26:12 PM PST by AmericaUnited
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To: xzins

I wonder how these church leaders are going to explain this on Judgment Day?


8 posted on 11/12/2006 5:26:15 PM PST by TommyDale (Iran President Ahmadinejad is shorter than Tom Daschle!)
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To: xzins

The UK has been on a gradual religous delcine - much like the rest of Europe. It'll be their downfall due to the lack of values and morals ... Have your women been measured for burkas recently?


9 posted on 11/12/2006 5:26:31 PM PST by mcg2000 (New Orleans: The city that declared Jihad on The Red Cross.)
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To: xzins

How soon before the church starts performing abortions?


10 posted on 11/12/2006 5:27:46 PM PST by Andy from Beaverton (I'm so anti-pc, I use a Mac)
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To: xzins
So, as society, we are back to Sparta in ancient Greece, where the infirm elderly, the sick, the disabled, the babies no one wants, are brought to a hillside and left to die. Abortion and euthanasia are the precursors of these travesties and they are already upon us here in the United States.
May God have mercy!!!
11 posted on 11/12/2006 5:28:53 PM PST by vox_freedom (Matthew 5:37 But let your speech be yea, yea: no, no)
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To: xzins
You've got to be cruel to be kind. Sometimes, love hurts. This is going to hurt me more than it hurts you. Charity, Christian love, (Caritas), demands that we do not help you.

So, now at least we can fix a price on human life. Let's start the bidding at 10 pounds.... do I hear 20?

12 posted on 11/12/2006 5:29:08 PM PST by PatrickF4
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To: xzins

"The church stressed that it was not saying some lives were not worth living, but said there were "strong proportionate reasons" for "overriding the presupposition that life should be maintained". "

-The Church of Nazism


13 posted on 11/12/2006 5:29:20 PM PST by Vinny (You can't compromise with evil.)
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To: xzins
the high financial cost of keeping desperately ill babies alive should be a factor in life or death decisions.

Their concept is that the human costs too much so they must be destroyed. What's the view on capital punishment for murderers over there? If you want to be homicidal why stop with babies. That bishop is probably ugly as hell and should be terminated as well.
14 posted on 11/12/2006 5:29:25 PM PST by kinoxi
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To: xzins
Hmmm... I was was just readinfthe other day how when the Nazi's came to power, they starting killing the useless eaters, elderly, disable and deformed children, etc. etc.

Evil is as evil does. What don't this freaking idiots understand about that?

15 posted on 11/12/2006 5:29:35 PM PST by AmericaUnited
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To: xzins

If we lose the value that human life has both sanctity and dignity and that only God can play God, I think we are finished.


16 posted on 11/12/2006 5:29:36 PM PST by stevem
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To: xzins

The church stressed that it was not saying some lives were not worth living, but said there were "strong proportionate reasons" for "overriding the presupposition that life should be maintained".

WTF is a 'strong proportionate reason'? O_o


17 posted on 11/12/2006 5:30:15 PM PST by Constantine XIII
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To: Andy from Beaverton
How soon before the church starts performing abortions?

Numerous "Catholic" hospitals have done them for years/decades...

18 posted on 11/12/2006 5:30:41 PM PST by vox_freedom (Matthew 5:37 But let your speech be yea, yea: no, no)
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To: xzins
The Church Of England is post-Christian. The Cross has been emptied in England of both spiritual and ethical import.

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." -Manuel II Paleologus

19 posted on 11/12/2006 5:31:57 PM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: Vinny; NYer; kstewskis; Victoria Delsoul; Raquel; Tax-chick; narses; kassie; Miss Marple; ...
The shock new policy from the church has caused outrage among the disabled.

Only the disabled?

20 posted on 11/12/2006 5:32:05 PM PST by Northern Yankee ( Stay The Course!)
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To: xzins

Does "sick newborn babies" include those who have a genetic tendency to become liberals or Islamic death cult members?


21 posted on 11/12/2006 5:32:18 PM PST by Screamname (Tagline: (optional, printed after your name on post):)
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To: AmericaUnited

Note to self... take a deep breath and grammer/spell check posts, especially when responding to threads where you want to choke the living daylights out of the articles targets...


22 posted on 11/12/2006 5:32:51 PM PST by AmericaUnited
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To: xzins

Government is now capitalized but God is not. That is the message between the lines. It is now considered quaint and old fashioned to defend life. The government is accepted by all to be the final arbiter in this decision.

The secularists will eventually win all disputes because government gives ordinary citizens benefits and laws while God just promises eternal life. Benefits and laws are tangible while religious mores, morals and promises are intangible. The "golden calf" remains an object of worship only it is not called that.


23 posted on 11/12/2006 5:32:51 PM PST by shrinkermd
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To: vox_freedom

I'm guessing that insurance companies would pay parents to allow the disabled to die. They just haven't had the societal cover to step forward yet with their offers of blood money.

The same with the elderly, severely ill, and infirm.

"Hi, Mr. Smith, I'm with Met Health Insurance and we need to talk about how your NOT receiving care for cancer could result in your heirs receiving benefits that would insure their financial security long after your passing. That would be some wonderful gift for you to leave for them, wouldn't it, Mr. Smith?"


24 posted on 11/12/2006 5:32:51 PM PST by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and proud of it! Supporting our troops means praying for them to WIN!)
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To: xzins
Maybe I'm just reading this wrong but it almost sounds to me like they're saying that there are times that using every available method to extend life is not always the best decision. Sometimes it is better to let nature take its course.

I know if I had a child who was born with some type of defect that was going to kill them very quickly, I would not want that child to be hooked up to every machine possible to keep him/her alive for a few days or weeks. I would put it into God's hands and trust him to do what he knows is best. If the child dies, then they would be in heaven. If God decided to heal the child, then I would be grateful beyond words.

That said, I would not advocate killing a child because they're blind, deaf, missing an arm or leg, or something along those lines. That would be murder.

25 posted on 11/12/2006 5:32:57 PM PST by COEXERJ145 (Just one day without polls would be nice.)
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To: xzins

I would like for him to imagine Jesus, Himself standing right next to him, and then saying that out loud!


26 posted on 11/12/2006 5:33:02 PM PST by Jewels1091
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To: xzins
Statement: "...compassion will override the 'rule' that life should inevitably be preserved."

Response: Pretty scary!

27 posted on 11/12/2006 5:35:02 PM PST by AEMILIUS PAULUS (It is a shame that when these people give a riot)
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To: AmericaUnited

A multi-media presentation on "Useless Eaters: Disability as a Genocidal Marker in Nazi Germany":

http://www.regent.edu/acad/schedu/uselesseaters/



28 posted on 11/12/2006 5:35:05 PM PST by LibFreeOrDie (L'Chaim!)
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To: kinoxi
These fine gentlemen of the church who are so overwrought regarding the pain and suffering of the wee babes should probably be guided on to a different level of existence themselves ~ and as soon as possible.

The rest of us may then struggle on as best we can unhindered with their anguished cries.

29 posted on 11/12/2006 5:35:10 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: xzins; pryncessraych; aroostook war; TheRake; rogator; kellynla; redgirlinabluestate; ...

+

If you want on (or off) this Catholic and Pro-Life ping list, let me know!



30 posted on 11/12/2006 5:36:32 PM PST by narses (St Thomas says ? lex injusta non obligat.)
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To: COEXERJ145

I agree with you.


31 posted on 11/12/2006 5:36:40 PM PST by Amelia (If we hire them, they will come...)
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To: xzins; sionnsar; Coleus; wagglebee

OMG, a terrible developement in the Anglican Church.


32 posted on 11/12/2006 5:36:58 PM PST by Irish_Thatcherite (A vote for Bertie Ahern is a vote for Gerry Adams!|What if I lecture Americans about America?)
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To: COEXERJ145

I don't think so. The example they used was of a child that is now THREE years old.

But, it wouldn't matter.

God is the only one who decides between life and death. If we do the right thing and try to help, that baby will not live one second longer nor one second less than God will decide.

Our job is to respond to the "good works that God has prepared ahead of time for us to do."


33 posted on 11/12/2006 5:38:29 PM PST by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and proud of it! Supporting our troops means praying for them to WIN!)
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To: xzins

The Times of London's article was vague about the authority of this submission, making it appear that this bishop might have written it on his own hook. But this article makes it appear that the bishop's submission has considerable authority as being the Church of England's position.

Utterly damnable.


34 posted on 11/12/2006 5:38:32 PM PST by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: xzins
we need to talk about how your NOT receiving care for cancer could result in your heirs receiving benefits that would insure their financial security long after your passing.

I'd change my will so fast it'd make your head spin!

35 posted on 11/12/2006 5:38:34 PM PST by Overtaxed
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To: SevenofNine

"This is for Brit and Aussie Freepers how mighty Church that Henry VIII founded has fallen"

It needs to fall a little more before Prince Charles will be a worthy king and defender of the faith....


36 posted on 11/12/2006 5:38:35 PM PST by RFEngineer
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To: Constantine XIII
"....(What) is a 'strong proportionate reason'?

Doublespeak for on the wrong side of the cost-benefit ratio.

The cost-benefit ratio is all that the so-called medical ethics people are talking about these days.

37 posted on 11/12/2006 5:39:18 PM PST by jimtorr
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To: Amelia

see #33


38 posted on 11/12/2006 5:40:19 PM PST by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and proud of it! Supporting our troops means praying for them to WIN!)
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To: RFEngineer
It needs to fall a little more before Prince Charles will be a worthy king and defender of the faith....

That is one of the funniest things I've read/thought about in a while. Prince Charles being 'THE' Defender of the Faith. What's next Bozo The Clown being elevated to be the Pope?

39 posted on 11/12/2006 5:43:08 PM PST by AmericaUnited
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To: xzins

As Terri Shrivo would say if she could, if you're disabled they'll pull your life support plug to kill you and if you don't die then they'll figure out some other way to kill you,( in my case it was starvation ) !!!


40 posted on 11/12/2006 5:43:56 PM PST by Obie Wan
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To: SevenofNine
We have plenty of folks that think like that in the US too. Many of them so called religious leaders.

I sure miss Cardinal O Connor.

41 posted on 11/12/2006 5:44:54 PM PST by mware (By all that you hold dear... on this good earth... I bid you stand! Men of the West!)
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To: Jewels1091
I would like for him to imagine Jesus, Himself standing right next to him, and then saying that out loud!

And He would say: "Whoever receives one of these little children in My name receives Me; and whoever receives Me, receives not Me but Him who sent Me."

Mark 9:37

42 posted on 11/12/2006 5:45:07 PM PST by Liberal Bob
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To: xzins

Well, since socialism is so gadawfuully inefficient some adjustments have to be made. The idea that a free enterprise society would have enough abundance to take care of those who can't take care of themselves would never occur to the these filthy european marxists.

Europe is the center of evil in the world. It has been for centuries. Hitler, Marx, Spencer, Malthus, Hegel......opium wars, world wars, etc etc ad infinitum.


43 posted on 11/12/2006 5:46:41 PM PST by Seruzawa (Marx's Das Kapital never could compete with the Sears catalog.)
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To: xzins

Reply?

My youngest son was born with Down Syndrome; without a major heart surgery, a very rare one at the time, he'd have never seen his 3rd birthday. Today he is 23 and the greatest blessing my family has.


44 posted on 11/12/2006 5:51:10 PM PST by Kolokotronis (Christ is Risen, and you, o death, are annihilated!)
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To: xzins
We should be thankful the Hensel twins were born here instead of Britain.
45 posted on 11/12/2006 5:51:15 PM PST by uglybiker (Don't look at me. I didn't make you stupid.)
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To: Kolokotronis

What a timely blessing is your story.

See #33


46 posted on 11/12/2006 5:53:04 PM PST by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and proud of it! Supporting our troops means praying for them to WIN!)
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To: xzins
Very plausible scenario.
The pro-death (aka euthanasia) advocates often play on the emotions of "those left behind" and how they would benefit by a "quick exit" of ol grandma.
Now it can be: "So what if you're not sick now, you will be soon at your age. Why suffer, and save the $$$ for the grandchildren, by taking this little grey colored pill and go to sleep..."
47 posted on 11/12/2006 5:54:29 PM PST by vox_freedom (Matthew 5:37 But let your speech be yea, yea: no, no)
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To: xzins

Is this the same church that wanted to divest from Israel?


48 posted on 11/12/2006 5:55:05 PM PST by ozoneliar ("The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants" -T.J.)
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To: xzins
lethal act would only be performed with manifest reluctance

Where have we heard that again? Oh, yeah... "safe, legal and RARE".

The world has turned into a House of Horrors :-(

49 posted on 11/12/2006 5:56:47 PM PST by Tamzee (Thomas Jefferson - "Every difference of opinion is not a difference of principle.")
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To: Constantine XIII; All

I'm only making a guess at "strong proportionate reasons", but I would say that it's similar to "do not resusitate (sic)" orders, which aren't uncommon with adult patients who are terminally ill. Life may still be maintained, and it clearly depends on who is giving the "order" (patient, family); a newborn obviously cannot communicate on his/her own behalf, and the Church may simply be saying that life should not necessarily be preserved at all costs. It's not a matter of whether a life is worth living, but whether a physical life can be maintained without extreme measures. We have wonderful modern medical technology...is it always a blessing?


50 posted on 11/12/2006 5:59:52 PM PST by 88keys
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