German bishops agree Catholic hospitals can prescribe emergency contraception to rape victims

German bishops agree Catholic hospitals can prescribe emergency contraception to rape victims

This is pretty much the same as the USCCB policy.*Compassionate and understanding care should be given to a person who is the victim of sexual assault. Health care providers should cooperate with law enforcement officials and offer the person psychological and spiritual support as well as accurate medical information. A female who has been raped should be able to defend herself against a potential conception from the sexual assault. If, after appropriate testing, there is no evidence that conception has occurred already, she may be treated with medications that would prevent ovulation, sperm capacitation, or fertilization. It is not permissible, however, to initiate or to recommend treatments that have as their purpose or direct effect the removal, destruction, or interference with the implantation of a fertilized ovum.
(Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services, USCCB, 2009, #36)*You just can’t kill a zygote, which is a human life.

Teresa Tomeo had a guest on this morning talking about this kind of thing. The guest was a child by rape.

Is the test for ovulation 100% accurate because if if it is not then it is russian roulette and this policy could lead to lives being snuffed out

How can this German policy and directive 36 in America be acceptable if the Pontifical Academy for Life said

the absolute unlawfulness of abortifacient procedures also applies to distributing, prescribing and taking the morning-after pill. All who, whether sharing the intention or not, directly co-operate with this procedure are also morally responsible for it

Why did Catholic Medical Association not accept directive 36 in their annual meeting in 2003? They said

Emergency contraception’ is ‘a misnomer as it does not consistently prevent fertilization’


has the potential to prevent implantation whether given in the pre-ovulatory, ovulatory, or post-ovulatory phase, that it cannot be ethically employed by a Catholic physician or administered in a Catholic Hospital in cases of rape

As to this one, if implantation is being prevented, then it’s still murder because fertilization occurs prior to implantation. The bold part above of Directive 36 refers only to situations in which there is no fertilization, and thus nothing to implant. So I would surmise is the answer to your question.

Joachim Kardinal Meisner consulted with Rome before making the statement he made last month.

This is massively disturbing to me. I stuck by the Church during the whole child sex thing because I considered these abominations to be the acts of individual men, not of the Body of Christ, even when senior clerics were using the power of the Church to cover up.

But this is different. This is the collegiate decision of a conference of bishops on a doctrinal matter, and it flies square in the face of everything the Church is supposed to stand for. Moreover, it seems to have been deliberately done when the See of Peter is essentially vacant. It’s a direct challange to the next pope, whoever he might be; there, we’ve done it, what are you prepared to do about it. If he fails to act, if he doesn’t come down on Germany like a ton of lead, if he lets this slip and slide, then I’m left wondering what it is I’m defending to the world.

We’re not Protestants. We don’t get to pick and choose a church if the one we’re attending isn’t doing it anymore. We are the Body of Christ, the rock on which He built his Church. We’re the ark to heaven. If our Church doesn’t stand, the sacraments will be extinguished and the gates of Heaven swing closed.

Without the Church, there is no hope, and if the Church turns abortionist, there is no Church.

A Catholic hospital turned away a rape victim and caught a lot of public hate from it. I am sure that has something to do with the German Bishops bringing this up. :shrug:

This sort of thing is liable to flip-flop back and forth several times as our technolgy and scientific knowledge changes. The principle is the same. Emergency contraception is okay in a case of violence, abortion is not. This situation is not because the Church is inconsistent but because this is still rather new and unknown. The priciples remain intact.

There’s a huge scientific debate over whether or not preventing fertilization is the same as an abortion.

I don’t know which side I’m on, but it’s definitely not as black and white as the Church becoming abortionist.

I am not sure such and absolute standard is necessary. Few things are 100%. I am about to go to the store. I am not 100% sure I will not kill someone in an automobile accident, yet I remain morally neutral when I turn the ignition. Yet we have in Catholic teaching a moral good to prevent contraception in this case as it stops the act of violence against the woman.

Ok I thought that artificial contraception is supposed to be “intrinsically evil”. That means there can never be a reason for it, correct? If it is ok in cases of rape, then it is not intrinsically evil. If it is not intrinsically evil, then that opens the door to subjectivity regarding under which circumstances one may contracept. Abusive husband? Too poor? Disease?

I know that sometimes teaching words it this way, but I do not think this is something the Church has designated. I believe what we may have is a case where the context of the evil was withing marriage. Let us go to the Humanae Vitae. Pope Paul VI only use the word “intrinsic” twice. Here is the one that applies.

Consequently, it is a serious error to think that a whole married life of otherwise normal relations can justify sexual intercourse which is deliberately contraceptive and so intrinsically wrong.

Imediately after we read this:

On the other hand, the Church does not consider at all illicit the use of those therapeutic means necessary to cure bodily diseases, even if a foreseeable impediment to procreation should result there from—provided such impediment is not directly intended for any motive whatsoever.

So no, I do not think we can say artificial contraception is intrinsically evil. Contraception (artuficial or natural) is intrinsically evil within the context of the whole life of a marriage.

I’m still not getting it. Is pregnancy - even one resulting from rape - now considered under the heading “bodily diseases”? Or have I missed something here?

Rule #1. NEVER, EVER trust the secular media to get facts right. Look further before heating up the tar and bagging up some feathers.

Now calm down and let’s talk this through.

Fact: Catholic teaching states that human life begins at conception. One can never take an action with the intent to kill an innocent human being, regardless of the end.

Fact: Contraception is a sin NOT because it is on an arbitrary list, but because it fundamentally damages the marriage relationship, changes it into something less.

Fact: Rape victims HAVE no relationship with their attacker that must be honored and protected. Contraception in such cases that isn’t abortive in such cases is NOT sinful.

Assertion: When there is a reasonable moral certainty that a rape victim has not ovulated yet, she can seek medical intervention to help prevent ovulation from occuring afterwards (sperm can live inside her for up to three days). If the best medical knowledge available says that a drug suppresses ovulation and alters the cervical mucus to make it hostile to sperm then it is very unlikely that she would conceive after taking it.

This is NOT a departure from catholic teaching. It is the thoughtful application of catholic principles rather than the robotic obedient to simplified rules. It is the REAL catholic way to reason morality.

The only remaining hard part is judging how high a risk there is of a breakthrough ovulation and pregnancy that would then be terminated by the drug effects on uterine lining. It may be similar to the risk of a pregnant woman riding in an airplane. So take a breather before going on a bender, OK guys?

Clarification: This would only be moral if a woman had a moral certainty that she hadn’t ovulated yet in her current cycle. If you aren’t tracking your fertility symptoms, I’m not even sure how you’d know.

When you are dealing with human life life should always be erred upon and if a test is not 100%, I do not understand how it can be okay to use to determine ovulation

I’m surprised that some of you are so upset by this. It is nothing new. See the following from an official CAF apologist :

Good find! Thanks for this!

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