In Canada, new bill would expand euthanasia, assisted suicide, Catholics warn

CNA Staff, Oct 8, 2020 / 08:00 pm (CNA).-  

A bill reintroduced by the Canadian government this month would expand access to euthanasia and assisted suicide in the country while eliminating important safeguards, Catholic leaders and other opponents of the bill have said.

“We unequivocally affirm and maintain the fundamental belief in the sacredness of all human life, a value that we share with many others in our country, including persons of different faiths and no faith at all,” Archbishop Richard Gagnon, president of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, said in a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Praise the Lord

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‘Any Deal on Brexit Must Uphold Provisions of Good Friday Agreement in all its Parts’ – Northern Catholic Bishops

The Northern Catholic Bishops have sent the letter below regarding the current negotiations on Brexit to An Taoiseach Micheál Martin; Prime Minister Boris Johnson; Head of the EU Task Force for Relations with the United Kingdom, Michel Barnier, and various key US officials (including Nancy Pelosi and NI Special Envoy, Mick Mulvaney).  Bishops stressed that any deal agreed on Brexit ‘must uphold and maintain the detailed provisions and principles of the Good Friday/Belfast Agreement, in all its parts.’ The letter also urged the international community to use its leverage in trade and other negotiations surrounding Brexit to ensure that the Good Friday/Belfast Agreement is respected and to avoid any return to a hard border on the island of Ireland.

Content of letter by Northern Bishops and NICCOSA

We, the Northern Bishops and the Northern Ireland Catholic Council on Social Affairs (NICCOSA) write to you at this critical juncture to contribute to the current negotiations surrounding the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union. We do so acknowledging the important joint statement from Christian church leaders on this island regarding Brexit and welcoming the recent engagement between UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. We are heartened at the positive tone arising from this discussion in which both parties acknowledged the importance of agreeing on a deal on Brexit for the good of the UK and Europe, and as the basis for a strong strategic EU-UK relationship in the future.

Praise the Lord

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Statement of Cardinal Blase J. Cupich, archbishop of Chicago, on Pope Francis’ Encyclical Letter ‘Fratelli Tutti’

“Fratelli tutti: On Fraternity and Social Friendship” is destined to be a defining document and body of teaching for the pontificate of Pope Francis. With this powerful encyclical letter, addressed to all people of goodwill, the Holy Father again reminds us why he is considered a preeminent moral teacher — and in an extraordinarily critical and fraught moment in human history.

“Fratelli tutti” represents a synthesis of the social teaching of Pope Francis. The encyclical draws deeply from previous writings, particularly “Laudato si’: On Care for Our Common Home,” and his addresses, especially those directed to the international community. His framework is Christian, but his approach is also deliberately ecumenical and interfaith. For example, he draws on his collaboration with the Grand Imam Ahmad Al-Tayyeb (see “Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together,” Abu Dhabi, 2019) and references Jewish sources.

The pope begins by identifying the challenges that result from the fragmentation and division afflicting humanity on personal, national, and international levels. These include violence and the prospect of war and civil unrest, racism, the degradation of the environment, the “discarding” of the poor and vulnerable, the crises prompted by the migration of desperate peoples, economies that benefit privileged groups, and a stridency and coarseness that mark our public discourse and private communications and disable possibilities for real human connection. The title of this first chapter captures the mood: “Dark Clouds over a Closed World.”

Praise the Lord

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