Church supports research that respects human life, Spanish archbishop says

.- Archbishop Lluis Martinez Sistach issued a pastoral letter last week in which he reaffirmed the Church’s support for scientific research that “is at the service of the human being” and reiterated that “the Church also unites her voice to those who, in the name of ethics, “denounce scientific projects that attack human life.”

In his pastoral letter, Archbishop Martinez explained that in today’s world it is not at all easy “to harmonize the demands of bio-medical research with the demands of ethics.”  “Not everything that technically can be done is licit from the point of view of ethics,” he said, adding that “technological advances cannot go beyond the purview of moral norms.”

The archbishop criticized the recent approval by the EU of a law allowing embryos to be used in research and said, “It is not easy for the Church to express her thought and reasons through the information media.  Despite these difficulties, the Church desires to be at the service of the human person and to defend his transcendent character and the respect the human person deserves in all stages of his existence.”

Archbishop Martinez said the words of Vatican II regarding man’s questions about his discoveries and his place and mission in the universe are just as relevant as ever.  “The Church knows she cannot impose her vision about mankind, but she cannot cease from proposing it, since if she did not do so, she would not fulfill her mission,” he maintained.

Citing a passage from “Lumen Gentium,” Archbishop Martinez said, “No human law can protect personal freedom and dignity as well as the Gospel that Christ has entrusted to the Church.”

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