The Catholic Organization for Life and Family (COLF) is calling on families, parishes, movements and associations to enter into the public debate on end-of-life issues. In a short reflection just made public, COLF cautions that two recent events are leading Canada in a dangerous direction.
“It is impossible to remain silent following the June 15 decision by Justice Lynn Smith of the Supreme Court of British Columbia in the Carter case, says COLF Director, Michèle Boulva. As citizens of a country which claims to be civilized, Catholics and all people of good will have the right and duty to counter any attempt to legalize euthanasia and assisted suicide, and also to promote palliative care and true compassion.”
The recent decision by the Supreme Court of British Columbia comes months after the worrisome recommendation of the Select Committee on Dying with Dignity who, last March, asked the Quebec Government to legalize “medical assistance in dying”, considered as “appropriate care at the end of life”.
“No matter how hard one tries to conceal reality by playing with words, laments Michèle Boulva, “medical assistance in dying” stands for euthanasia and assisted suicide. This is about killing.”
COLF emphasizes the incoherence there would be for our country to put so much energy in preventing suicide while at the same time legalizing assisted suicide. Similarly, it would be contradictory to rightly condemn elder abuse, while legalizing euthanasia – the ultimate abuse.
In fact, says COLF’s Director using the words of the President of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops following Justice Smith’s decision : “We stand before a fundamental option, the response to which reveals the true nature of our society's heart. Do we show concern for the sick, the elderly, the handicapped and vulnerable by encouraging them to commit suicide or through deliberating killing them by euthanasia? Or, instead, do we fashion a culture of life and love in which each person, at every moment and in all circumstances of their natural lifespan, is treasured as a gift?”
COLF encourages Catholics to contact their Members of Parliament to ask them to oppose any attempt to legalize euthanasia and assisted suicide. It also gives links to two networks that are actively involved in end-of-life issues: the “Euthanasia Prevention Coalition” and “Vivre dans la Dignité”.