Tissues, Stem Cells, and Other Biologicals Obtained From Aborted Fetuses vs. Those From Other Immoral Sources

I understand that the Catholic Church is against embryonic stem cell research because the means by which the stem cells are obtained (i.e. the murder of the unborn) are immoral and so by implication any fruit produced from such research is ethically tainted. Does this same reasoning apply to other cases in which the death of the subject necessary for the removal of tissues/organs, etc. occurred due to an immoral action of another person?

Let’s say I am murdered but my body is found while sill warm and my organs are still viable. Would it be against Catholic moral teaching for someone else to harvest my organs for donation, or would doing such constitute complicity in my murder?

Consent is the answer. If the recently deceased does not have it on record that he or she wants organs transplanted to another person if they are killed or die by other means, no one can legally do it. There is no complicity in this case.

Ed

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