Loading
NY Catholic conference opposes 'chemical digestion' of human remains
Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Addthis

.- A bill that redefines cremation, to include the “chemical digestion” of human remains into liquid waste, has met with rejection from the New York State Catholic Conference.

“The Church’s reverence for the sacredness of the human body and its dignity arises out of concern for both the body’s natural and supernatural properties,” the conference said in a March 19 memorandum on a bill under consideration in the state legislature.

“It is therefore essential that the body of a deceased person be treated with respect and reverence.  Processes involving chemical digestion of human remains do not sufficiently respect this dignity.”

The proposed change to New York's nonprofit corporation law would revise its definition of “cremation.” Along with its conventional meaning, “cremation” could include “any chemical process” that breaks down a human body.

One such procedure, the conference noted in its memo to the legislature, is “alkaline hydrolysis.” The rarely-used process has been publicized in recent years as a “green” alternative to conventional cremation, which involves the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

Alkaline hydrolysis involves using lye to dissolve bodies into a liquid substance, which proponents say can be safely poured down a drain. It is also referred to as “bio-cremation.”

Along with its concern for the dignity of the human body, New York's Catholic conference is also worried that the bill could also lead to some individuals being “bio-cremated” against their will.

If the legal definition of cremation changes, the conference noted, individuals who request to be cremated after death – in the traditional sense – could inadvertently have their bodies dissolved into a waste product, due to a misunderstanding of their expressed wishes.

The conference warned that the bill “contains no safeguards to prevent this from occurring.”

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google

Featured Videos

Little Sisters of the Poor press conference in Denver
Little Sisters of the Poor press conference in Denver
Family thrilled to see Pope Francis in Istanbul
Syrian Refugee, Sara, 14, Before Meeting Pope
Ebola orphans thousands of children in West Africa
One year after Haiyan: Philippines rebuilds homes, lives
An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
Christ Cathedral CNA video Sept 2014
Alejandro Bermudez of CNA accepts ice bucket challenge
'The Real Albania,' remembering those who fled
Pope Francis in Albania, "one of the most important visits of the post-communist era in Albania"
Pope Francis greets paralyzed man who risked all to see him
Franciscans on the banks of the Tiber in Rome, working for the New Evangelization
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea
Dec
19

Liturgical Calendar

December 19, 2014

Advent Weekday

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 21:23-27

Gospel
Date
12/15/14
12/14/14
12/13/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Judg 13: 2-7, 24-25A
Gospel:: Lk 1: 5-25

Saint of the Day

St. Romuald »

Saint
Date
12/15/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 21:23-27

Homily
Date
12/15/14
12/14/14
12/13/14