“We are entrusted to each other.” In this podcast, we’re joined by Dr. Lesley M. Rice, Assistant Professor of Bioethics at the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family at The Catholic University of America. Today she shares about the WHY behind the Church’s teachings on IVF, reproductive technologies, end of life care, and how God’s plan for life and love leads to the fullest life. Dr. Rice gives us a framework and furthering studying in order to uphold our human dignity and those who are entrusted to us.
(04:37) Edmund introduces us to this podcast’s guest, Dr. Lesley Rice from the Catholic University of America. The discussion begins with Dr. Rice gives us an explanation of bioethics, that is, how we understand our actions and their significance. Edmund outlines that the Catechism is a summary of the deposit of faith, but the deposit of faith doesn't go into every single unique situation. And the deposit of faith doesn't have every single scientific advancement and scenario outlined. So this is why this podcast’s discussion is important.
(06:00) Dr. Rice explains that bioethics touch many topics, including reproductive technologies, euthanasia, and physician assisted suicide. Thankfully, our Catholic faith offers us a patrimony, a rich heritage of, of principles and truths that can inform our decision making. She explains, “What the Church teaches, she teaches because it's true.” Dr. Rice explains Church’s stance on IVF and artificial insemination.
(13:10) Science at the service of the human person: Dr. Lesley Rice shares a fuller vision of the human person and our purpose and destiny as creatures of a loving God. She goes on to explain the role of science in our lives. “The ambitions of science are good in the sense of alleviating suffering.” However, when science gives us a sense of total autonomy from God, and control over suffering, this can be dangerous for the human person.
(18:42) Intentions and consequences: Edmund brings up the point that our morality and ethical understanding of actions must be considered from start to finish, and a good end for an action does not give us license to hurt or violate the rights of another.
(23:13) A deeper look into IVF: Dr. Lesley Rice affirms the good of the intention to want a child. She shares more about the harmful effects of IVF and how the procedure violates the rights of the married couple, as well as the child. Dr. Rice says that IVF “takes away the individuality” of the embryo, which simplifies human beings at their smallest level to something to be manipulated.
(27:27) Edmund asks Dr. Rice how our audience can prepare themselves and navigate facing difficult ethical questions in their lives personally or with family members. Dr. Rice mentions reading Part III of the Catechism, as well as reading, John Paul II’s Evangelium Vitae.
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