Service Wednesday night went well. We had a good turn out and got to discuss a lot of good issues (though not all that we wanted to).
Probably the only hard and fast conclusion we came to was that these are difficult decisions and must be approached and made with God’s guidance and under His grace.
There is a link to a document put out by the Comission on Theology & Church Relations titled “Christian Care at Life’s End.“ There is a lot of good information in it. A few excerts on some of the principles:
Principle 1: Euthanasia, in its proper sense, is a synonym for mercy killing, which involves
suicide and/or murder. It is, therefore, contrary to God’s Law.
Principle 2: As Creator, God alone knows with certainty whether a disease or an injury is incurable.
Principle 3: When the God-given powers of the body to sustain its own life can no longer function and doctors in their professional judgment conclude that there is no real hope for recovery even with life-support instruments, a Christian may in good conscience “let nature take its course.”
Principle 4: Administering pain-killing medications, even at the risk of shortening life, is permissible, since this does not entail the choice of death as either a means or an end.
Principle 6: Each person, no matter how infirm and socially useless he or she may appear to be, deserves to be accepted as a being created in the image of God.
Principle 7: While suffering is an intrusion into life, it provides the opportunity for Christian witness and service.
And finally (and most importantly):
Principle 10: Any decisions made in this highly complex area, and any actions taken that may later appear to have been wrong, have been redeemed by that forgiveness which is available toall who put their trust in the work and merits of mankind’s Savior and Redeemer.
In the name of the Author of Life and Resurrected One,