A "Soap Box" Perspective / "Rant"

This "rant" was a reaction to perceived "inaction" by Catholic leadership in response to Supreme Court ruling on doctor assisted suicide..


Support "life values" with real action for Palliative / Hospice Care



To the Editor of the Prairie Messenger

In the editorial of the February 11, 2015 Prairie Messenger, the Editor did a good job of summarizing the key responses made by Catholic leaders to the Supreme Court ruling on the question of assisted suicide.

Those responses reaffirmed that we need to support those suffering and dying as a demonstration of our fundamental respect for human life. There were calls for governments to support palliative and home care.

In one sense this united and passionate expression of support for those suffering with terminal illnesses and other severe pain speaks well of our Catholic, Christian and human values. I applaud those expressions.

I also believe that if I want to understand what values any organization really holds, I should ignore their “Mission Statements” and look at their budgets.

That is when I start feeling uneasy about our Catholic leadership. In not one of the articles that I read did I hear our leaders declare real, tangible support to advance hospice or palliative care. Episcopal Corporations / Bishops’ finances are secret and not open to the Catholics whose contributions provide the revenue stream for those budgets, so we are unable to see what our Bishops really believe in this regard.

If I had a vote about such budgets and practical steps to support those suffering end of life distress, I would say that we should “put our money where our mouth is.” If we cannot do that we are just making noises to no effect.

In past generations Catholics rallied behind leaders to support those in need by building and staffing schools and hospitals. Do we still have those kinds of Catholics? Do we still have those kinds of leaders?

Gerald Regnitter
Christopher Lake, Saskatchewan