.- Auxiliary Bishop Odilo Pedro Scherer of Sao Paulo and Secretary General of National Conference of Bishops of Brazil warned this week against the idea of a referendum on the beginning of life and the dignity of human embryos. Referring to the referendum taking place this weekend in Italy on a controversial law on assisted fertility, the bishop said other countries have followed suit in proposing similar decisions.
Speaking to the Fides news agency, Bishop Scherer said it was âcontradictory that, after all of the scientific advances, people pretend not to know that the embryo is a human being during the first 15 days of life.â
He added that scientific and anthropological facts come to precisely the opposite conclusion, that is, that âthe beginning of human life occurs at fertilization.â Therefore, âif the embryo is not a human being from the first moment, it will never be one.â
Bishop Scherer noted that in vitro fertilization or the production of embryos for storage or freezing results in âserious ethical and anthropological problemsâ and therefore legal measures that do not respect human dignity and make human beings objects of use and manipulation âcan never be accepted.â