Palliative Care from a Catholic Moral Perspective

stethoscopeOn 6 February, 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada struck down the ban on physician – assisted suicide. The subsequent federal laws that will determine the provision of medical aid in dying will impact the delivery of palliative care. For this reason, it is important for Catholics to understand end-of-life issues including the provision of palliative care measures. This subject is very broad and among faithful Catholics there is some confusion regarding what measures are acceptable.

Palliative care, especially end-of-life care,  is near and dear to my heart. On my blog at Catholic Insight, I wrote an article that explains end-of-life care from a Catholic moral perspective. Here’s the link, if you’d like to read it.

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8 Responses to Palliative Care from a Catholic Moral Perspective

  1. dgcree says:

    Very informative, thank you, Terry !

  2. Pingback: Palliative Care from a Catholic Moral Perspective | Christians Anonymous

  3. SR says:

    Hey 8 Kids,

    Thank you so much for sharing all of this. Having just lost Mom a little over a month ago, we went through some painful decisions, but they were good ones.

    We did call hospice in and they were great! We did have pain management for Mom that went extremely well. She was given morphine only when her pain was unmanageable without it. She was never given too much or too little. Being that said, she was extremely comfortable and extremely comfortable when the Lord called her home.

    As far as food and fluids, they were almost non-existent there at the last. Not because they were not offered, but she could of cared less. We did however swab the inside of her mouth to keep it from getting dry and always washed her face and lips with a wet wash rag. This seemed to keep her very comfortable. When she wanted something to drink/eat she would sip it through a straw, if she did not want it she would not.

    Mom’s passing was very peaceful and Mom was always comfortable. Nothing was withheld from her, to hasten her death or to prevent it. She was our guide to it all. We could tell if she was in pain, hungry, or thirsty. Those needs were met. Her clothes were changed daily and she was given a sponge bath every single day, and hair combed. This always seemed to make her feel better.

    Death is death. No doctor or anyone in the medical field needs to hasten this process. If the family will let their loved one be their guide, and the medical community, there is enough out there now, to keep them comfortable. If the family will do their part in aiding in this, God knows the right moment for it all.

    This was a good post and I thank you so much for sharing it all. It confirmed to me, what we did for Mom, how we handled everything, and the peaceful death she died, was the right thing to do. Love you for it and God Bless, SR

    • SR, thank you for sharing your story about your mom’s passing. What a beautiful story of a beloved person who died with dignity. I’m glad the article helped. God bless you. My prayers for the repose of your mom’s soul.

      • SR says:

        Thank you 8 Kids for the prayers for the repose of my Mom’s soul. How that touched my heart! Love and God Bless, SR

  4. thoran09 says:

    Thank you for writing this article. It’s a gift 8 years after my Dad’s passing. I’ve struggled for understanding and solace after my family and I grappled with end of life measures that my physician father specified. He would have been the one inclined to explain what was happening to him physiologically, but couldn’t, after he suffered a devastating cerebral hemorrhage while vacationing overseas.

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge and imparting some understanding. I view it as a gift from my Dad, speaking through your essay.

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