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Organ Donation
Question from Tom Schmid on 9/16/2008:

I realize that this question has been touched on before, please forgive me but I still am somewhat puz zled. I am currently a blood donor. I am considering becoming an organ donor as well. However, I have heard horror stories of medical facilities harvesting organs for a recipient before the donor has expired. If I donate my organs, am I furthering the cause for the culture of life or am I providing the means for furthering the cause for the culture of death? In essense, which avenue would be more in line with Catholic teaching?

Answer by Judie Brown on 9/16/2008:

Tom

The important thing to know is that as the Church teaches, there is something charitable about donating organs, but that the process of taking those organs can never CAUSE the death of the donor.

There is a very interesting article about this on line and you may want to read it. The article, "Organ donation: the grim harvest" by Paul Byrne, M.D. is at http://www.clmagazine.org/backissues/2008JA_byrne.pdf

You will find a "life support directive" with the article.

Judie Brown

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