Need Help in Answering a Question to a Methodist Friend


#1

The scenario was posed to me in an email by a Methodist friend and I found it a little difficult to answer. Below is the email he sent me. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Thank you.

Tony
[font=Arial][/font]
[font=Arial][/font]
[font=Arial]Today’s question for discussion:[/font]
[font=Arial]Using the 4 criteria for a Just War, could the same clear standards not also define (drumroll…………) a Just Abortion?[/font]

[font=Arial][/font][font=Arial]Bear with me here. Consider the most grievous and aggravated situation. A young girl of 13 is brutally gang-raped under threat of violence, and is injured in the process. She later learns she is pregnant, but doesn’t know which of the five perpetrators might be the sperm donor (I can’t consider him a “father” in any real sense.) She continues to suffer from internal bleeding, there is a chance that both mother and child may die. The mother is from a poverty, lives in the slums, no family, no income, no health insurance. No future for raising a child, even if both were healthy, but they’re not.[/font]

[font=Arial][/font][font=Arial]She appears in the emergency room, unconscious from blood loss. The only truly “pro-life” option is to abort the fetus to save the life of the mother. Both would die if they don’t perform the termination.[/font]

[font=Arial][/font][font=Arial]Would that not be a Just reason for an abortion? In my mind (and that of most doctors) it is. If the church disagrees in such an extreme case, I would like to see the arguments backing this thinking, if that is the case.[/font]

[font=Arial][/font]

[font=Arial]While I’m asking, does the new Pope take pretty much the same stand opposing the Iraq war that Pope JP did?[/font]


#2

Hi Tony,

The tradtional Catholic position is that the doctors must try their best to save both the mother and the child. You cannot kill one human being to save another.

Verbum


#3

The whole question is filled with impossible situations but here goes.

  1. No one could survive internal bleeding long enough to find out their pregnant.
  2. If the girl has no family and is unconscious when she somehow appears at the hospital and the doctor knows that both would die then its the doctors decision as to how or who to save.
  3. Therefor the unconscious girl would have no culpability or sin regardless of the out come.
  4. It seems to me that the scenario is saying that this is happening at about 4 to 8 weeks after the rape. If this is so the doctor is obligated to save the only life which is medically possible at this time, which is the girls. The Church would not have a problem with this at all.

#4

[quote=tparsons]The scenario was posed to me in an email by a Methodist friend and I found it a little difficult to answer. Below is the email he sent me. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Thank you.

Tony
[font=Arial][/font]
[font=Arial][/font]
[font=Arial]Today’s question for discussion:[/font]
[font=Arial]Using the 4 criteria for a Just War, could the same clear standards not also define (drumroll…………) a Just Abortion?[/font]

[font=Arial][/font][font=Arial]Bear with me here. Consider the most grievous and aggravated situation. A young girl of 13 is brutally gang-raped under threat of violence, and is injured in the process. She later learns she is pregnant, but doesn’t know which of the five perpetrators might be the sperm donor (I can’t consider him a “father” in any real sense.) She continues to suffer from internal bleeding, there is a chance that both mother and child may die. The mother is from a poverty, lives in the slums, no family, no income, no health insurance. No future for raising a child, even if both were healthy, but they’re not.[/font]

[font=Arial][/font][font=Arial]She appears in the emergency room, unconscious from blood loss. The only truly “pro-life” option is to abort the fetus to save the life of the mother. Both would die if they don’t perform the termination.[/font]

[font=Arial][/font][font=Arial]Would that not be a Just reason for an abortion? In my mind (and that of most doctors) it is. If the church disagrees in such an extreme case, I would like to see the arguments backing this thinking, if that is the case.[/font]

[font=Arial][/font]

[font=Arial]While I’m asking, does the new Pope take pretty much the same stand opposing the Iraq war that Pope JP did?[/font]
[/quote]

One cannot directly and intentionally take the life of one innocent person to protect the life of another person. Just war theory applies to the morality of the war not to individual actions during the war. One cannot directly and intentionally take the life of an innocent person even in war without it being murder.


#5

The interesting part to me is the necessity to establish that the child was “fathered” in a most reprehensible way. Regardless of the cause of the pregnancy, the child is always innocent, so it never matters how the child was conceived.

A second thing to remember is that the situation of a pregnancy being aborted to save the life of the mother almost never happens. What we do know is that a woman’s body benefits from carrying a child full-term. Abortion, or even an unavoidable miscarriage, will have some negative health effects to the mother in the long term.

You may also want to look at the Didache from the early second century which, among many teachings of what thou should or should not do, states… “Thou shall not procure an abortion, nor take the life of the new-born child.”

You may also want to point out that before 1930 ever recognized Protestant denomination on earth stood against contraceptives and abortion on biblical grounds. The Anglican church of England opened the flood-gates when it first caved in to the demands of its congregation and allowed for contraception and abortion. In just over 50 years since then, every recognized Protestant denomination on earth has flip-floped on the subject and now allows contraception and some degree of abortion.

You may want to ask your Methodist friend why the Methodist faith has done an about-face on this issue within their own history.

Thal59


#6

perhaps the Medodist friend is drawn to the position of the Catholic Church… and is simply beginning a dialogue to come home.


#7

[quote=tparsons][font=Arial][/font][font=Arial]She appears in the emergency room, unconscious from blood loss. The only truly “pro-life” option is to abort the fetus to save the life of the mother. Both would die if they don’t perform the termination.[/font]

[/quote]

Have TParsons provide any medical references which would support such a situation. I submit he/she will find none.

Think about it logistically:

The girl is brutally gang raped, say on a Tuesday.

The poster says the girl finds out she’s pregnant. Doesn’t say when this was determined, but we all know it wouldn’t happen that night. They would find this out several weeks later because it takes some time for the egg and the sperm to connect and then plant itself in the uterine walls in order for the hormone levels to rise enough for any testing to result in a POSITIVE reading.

This is where the scenario goes awry - the poster then claims the girl continues to suffer from internal bleeding. Now, honestly, what doctor or medical facility would allow a 13 year old traumatized girl to continually bleed internally? NONE. She would have remained in the hospital until everything stabilized.

So…what more realistically would have occurred, is the girl is raped on a Tuesday, treated in a medical facility for weeks until all internal bleeding and such is repaired, she would be released to her home. It’s quite possible that before her release a pregnancy test would reveal that **despite **all the blood loss, the medicines pumped into her body, the trauma her uterus endured somehow, the embryo managed to implant itself in her uterine lining (something I find very difficult to believe would actually happen, but hey, it’s possible).

Since she has been treated and released physically there’s no reason an abortion would have to be performed in order to save her life. Whatever measures had to be taken to save her life in those initial hours, days may have resulted in the embryo being destroyed (perhaps it was all the treatment which prohibited the embryo from planting itself or somehow dislodged it). If that was the case then before her release the **initial pregnancy test would have been returned NEGATIVE **and again, there is no moral crisis.


#8

[quote=MrS]perhaps the Medodist friend is drawn to the position of the Catholic Church… and is simply beginning a dialogue to come home.
[/quote]

While this may be slightly off topic, you make a great point. Whenever any non-Catholic Christian asks me a question (or even makes an accusation) about my faith, I see the person potential convert and answer in a very clear, respectfull, and hopefully loving way.

The Holy Spirit works in many ways, and often a little bit of curiousity can bring people back home.


#9

Thanks Guys, all of you helped tremendously!!


#10

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