The president of the Bishops’ Conference of Colombia, Bishop Ruben Salazar Gomez has issued a statement about the efforts to regulate euthanasia in the country and warned that it is “contrary to ethics and socially disorienting to pass legislation regarding the suppression of innocent human lives.”
Bishop Gomez recalled that “the right to life is a fundamental and universal right” enshrined as inviolable by Colombian’s Constitution. “In the ethical tradition of respect for life, human dignity is invariable: it is not lessened because of illness, suffering, malformation or dementia. Moreover, as experience shows, biological or psychological adversity can be the occasion for further ennoblement,” the bishop stated.
Likewise, he noted that a “natural and serene death is the desirable conclusion for every human life. For this reason, the fight against pain and the voluntary renouncing of useless, disproportionate and overly expensive treatments that would only precariously and sadly prolong one’s existence is perfectly legitimate. It is not licit, however, to interrupt the normal treatment patients in similar cases should receive.”
“Based on these principles born of proper reasoning and enlightened by the Gospel, the Church rejects euthanasia when it involves the decision to anticipate the end of a life that illness or old age seems to have made unbearable, or as an act of deliberately ending the life of a terminally ill person in order to end his or her suffering,” the bishop continued.
“Regardless of whether Congress passes the measure in question or not, we consider at an opportune moment to remind Catholics that not everything that is legally permitted is morally licit,” Bishop Gomez said.