Thursday, May 20, 2010

Why I'm an Exodus Catholic, Ctd.

It's stuff like this that really ticks me off:

Last November, a 27-year-old woman was admitted to St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix. She was 11 weeks pregnant with her fifth child, and she was gravely ill. According to a hospital document, she had "right heart failure," and her doctors told her that if she continued with the pregnancy, her risk of mortality was "close to 100 percent."

The patient, who was too ill to be moved to the operating room much less another hospital, agreed to an abortion. But there was a complication: She was at a Catholic hospital.

"They were in quite a dilemma," says Lisa Sowle Cahill, who teaches Catholic theology at Boston College. "There was no good way out of it. The official church position would mandate that the correct solution would be to let both the mother and the child die. I think in the practical situation that would be a very hard choice to make."

But the hospital felt it could proceed because of an exception — called Directive 47 in the U.S. Catholic Church's ethical guidelines for health care providers — that allows, in some circumstance, procedures that could kill the fetus to save the mother. Sister Margaret McBride, who was an administrator at the hospital as well as its liaison to the diocese, gave her approval.

The woman survived. When Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted heard about the abortion, he declared that McBride was automatically excommunicated — the most serious penalty the church can levy.
Here's a nun, who is an administrator of a Catholic hospital, faced with an impossible situation, and who ended up giving consent to an abortion procedure that all medical evidence indicated was necessary to save the life of the mother, and the Bishop of this Diocese declares this nun to be excommunicated. And yet pedophile priests and child rapists are not only allowed to remain in the Church, but they are protected, defended, and shuffled around in a gross cover up of much worse "ethical" abuses of Catholic doctrine, not to mention criminal behavior, by the very hierarchy that this bishop constitutes and represents. It's sickening. How can any Catholic not have serious, serious doubts about the moral authority of the church and not acknowledge the rot at the uppermost levels of the institutional hierarchy and leadership of the church.

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