Ethical Method in Christian Bioethics: Mapping the Terrain
- David P. Gushee*
| . . . The question of bioethical methodology is especially
acute for those working within the conservative Protestant
branch of the Christian community. The typical evangelical
way of approaching a moral question is to turn to the Bible
for direct citations relevant to the issue at hand. . .
Finding the Human in Christian Bioethics
- Amy Laura Hall, Ph.D.* |
. . .Does an orphan
in the woods have a voice if there is no one to hear her
cry? What if another forest-dweller perceives her as his
next meal? Is this propositional orphan a "she" in any
meaningful sense, calling in any relevant way for care or
attention from those who would neglect, manipulate, or
devour her? . . .
God's Gift for Those Facing a Conflict in Conscience
- Gregory L. Waybright, Ph.D.* | God has
given us much to assist us in times of conflict. We have His
Word, the ability to pray, and, as Jesus-followers, the
indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. At the same time,
one of the most important gift's God has provided to lead
toward wisdom in the midst of times of conscience-conflict
is not utilized fully. . . The church is God's gift to His
people for times when conscience is in conflict. . .
The Christian Conscience in Modern Medicine
- Jacky Engel* | Conscientious objection
arises within medicine when a doctor's conscience runs
counter to a legal and socially accepted medical practice.
This usually relates to 'controversial' practices, such as
abortion, euthanasia, the morning after pill and certain
contraceptives. It is expressed predominantly (though not
exclusively) by those with religious convictions. For the
Christian medic, it will become increasingly relevant as
medicine departs further from traditional ethical
boundaries. . .
Christians and civil disobedience
Fellowship of Canada (Background Paper)
| A basic requirement for the functioning of civil
society, especially in a democracy, is that citizens,
generally speaking, should obey the laws of the land.
Christians and most, if not all, other religious groups
accept that principle as an over-arching reality. The
logic is compelling. If citizens, in substantial numbers,
would take the law into their own hands and individually
decide which laws to obey and which to disobey, then anarchy
might result rather quickly. The theory is clear and
essentially true but the practical situation is sometimes
more complicated. . .
Conflicts of conscience: faith versus the state
Rich Preheim*|. . . Any threat to conscience is a cause for concern. . .
Anabaptists know that the state, no matter how benevolent,
is always ready to force believers to choose between it and
God. . .
Christian conscience in a secular culture
Reflections of an ecumenical Pentecostal
- Daniel Tomberlin*
| . . . The Gospel of Christ should inform believers on the political left and
right, and convict sinners on the left and right. The Incarnation (God with
us) means that Christ is above, in, and with all human endeavors. So yes,
Christian theology and ethics should seek to inform and shape public life.
That means that individual Christians, and Christian institutions, have an
obligation to exercise a Christ-shaped conscience. . .
The Danger of the State as a Substitute for Conscience
Dr. Richard Land*
| You have heard it said: "You can't legislate morality." . . . But what happens if religiously informed moral
values are excluded from public policy debates?
CHRISTIAN MEDICAL AND DENTAL
(USA and Canada)
"The Christian Medical & Dental Associations (CMDA) are
made up of the Christian Medical Association (CMA) and the
Christian Dental Association (CDA). CMDA provides resources,
networking opportunities, education, and a public voice for
Christian healthcare professionals and students."
The following position papers/guidelines are of particular
interest in discussions about freedom of conscience and have
been made available on the Project website with the kind
permission of the CMDA. Visit the
CMDA website for
information and links about other issues of interest
Health Care Right of Conscience
- Respect for conscientiously held beliefs of individuals and for
individual differences is an essential part of our free society. The right
of choice is foundational in our healthcare process, and it applies to both
healthcare professionals and patients alike. Issues of conscience arise when
some aspect of medical care is in conflict with the personal beliefs and
values of the patient or the healthcare professional. CMDA believes that in
such circumstances the Rights of Conscience have priority. . . .
Moral Complicity with Evil
- Moral complicity with evil is culpable association with or participation
in wrongful acts. Evil is defined as anything immoral or wrong based on
Biblical principles. Questions about moral complicity with evil can arise in
regard to an individual's relationship to or involvement with past, present
or future evil. . .
- . . .Some secondary effects have moral implications. An assessment of the moral
acceptability of adverse secondary effects requires consideration of
principles, motives, con-sequences, and implications.* The Rule of Double
Effect, introduced into the discipline of moral reasoning by St. Thomas
Aquinas, is particularly useful in evaluating the moral acceptability of
adverse secondary effects. . .
Healthcare Education and Christian Faith
- . . . If a trainee in the healthcare professions expresses an
unwillingness to participate in an aspect of training or patient care as a
matter of conscience, that stance should be explored in a non-judgmental
manner to ensure that both parties fully understand the issue. The trainee's
position on matters of conscience should be honored without academic or
personal penalty. . .
CHRISTIAN MEDICAL FELLOWSHIP
The General Medical Council (GMC) is the state regulator of
medical practice in the United Kingdom. The GMC issed a
draft policy for public comment from 18 April to 13 June, 2012,
Personal beliefs and medical practice.
The Christian Medical Fellowship responded to the proposal with
a detailed submission which included the following comments.
When may a general practitioner refuse to accept a patient?
- . . . It is increasingly
important to our members that the laws which define
acceptable medical practice do not also force them to
provide to patients whatever is deemed 'acceptable' within
the law. . .
Conscientious objection and referral
- . . . to require such involvement in abortion would be to
breach the doctor's right under Article 9 of the ECHR. A
guideline imposing such a requirement would accordingly be
unlawful and susceptible to judicial review.
Maintaining trust in the profession / expressing personal
- . . .The way we express
beliefs in everyday life can be perceived in many different
ways. A belief expressed in one way may be perceived by one
listener as not distressing, and another as distressing. . .
Imposing our morality
- Christian Medical Fellowship [United Kingdom] |
Well, for a start, we can't refuse to diagnose and treat them just
because they are sinners. We wouldn't see anybody. Where could we draw
the line? Nitpickerus: It's not that which worries
me. It's when they want us to help them do something which we regard as
unethical . . .