Thursday, December 16, 2010
Arizona Catholic hospital defends abortion
Despite the threat of the imminent revocation of its status as a Catholic institution, St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix issued a brief statement on December 15 defending an abortion that took place there. The abortion took place in late 2009 after a hospital ethics committee deemed the killing of the unborn child necessary to save the life of the mother.
“We believe that all life is sacred,” the hospital said in its statement. “In this case we saved the only life we could save, which was the mother’s.”
In a November 22 letter, Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix told the president of the hospital’s parent company, Catholic Healthcare West (CHW), that on December 17 he will declare that the hospital is no longer a Catholic institution unless CHW recognizes that the abortion violated the US bishops’ ethical directives and pledges it “will never occur again.”
“The bishop and his staff are working together with Catholic Healthcare West and St. Joseph’s Hospital to find the best way to provide authentic Catholic health care in accordance with the Church’s teaching,” Bishop Olmsted’s spokesman said in a December 15 statement.
Reacting to news of the bishop’s letter, the ACLU again urged the federal government to compel religious hospitals to provide “emergency abortions,” and Lisa Fullam, professor of moral theology at the Jesuit School of Theology at Santa Clara University, urged the hospital to defy the bishop.
Read the statement from the Diocese of Phoenix here.
Read the statement from St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center here.
at 1:05 PM