Monday, March 5, 2018

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 423.

YOUCAT Question n. 423 - What is the Church’s judgment on surrogate motherhood and artificial fertilization?

(Youcat answer) All assistance in conceiving a child through research and medicine must stop when the common bond of parenthood is loosened and destroyed by the intrusion of a third person or when conception becomes a technological act outside of sexual union in marriage.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2374) Couples who discover that they are sterile suffer greatly. "What will you give me," asks Abraham of God, "for I continue childless?" (Gen 15:2) and Rachel cries to her husband Jacob, "Give me children, or I shall die!" (Gen 30:1).       

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Out of respect for human dignity, the Church cannot approve of the technologically assisted conception of a child through heterologous or homologous insemination. Every child has in God’s plan the right to have a father and a mother, to know his parents, and if at all possible to grow up surrounded by their love. Artificial insemination with the sperm of another man (heterologous insemination) also destroys the spirit of marriage, in which husband and wife have the right to become a father or a mother only through the other spouse. But even homologous insemination (in which the sperm comes from the husband) makes a child the product of a technological procedure and does not allow it to originate from the loving union of a personal sexual encounter. If the child becomes a product, however, then that leads immediately to cynical questions about product quality and product liability. The Church also rejects pre-implantation diagnosis, which is carried out for the purpose of killing imperfect embryos. Surrogate motherhood, too, in which an artificially conceived embryo is implanted into another woman, is contrary to human dignity.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2377) Techniques involving only the married couple (homologous artificial insemination and fertilization) are perhaps less reprehensible, yet remain morally unacceptable. They dissociate the sexual act from the procreative act. The act which brings the child into existence is no longer an act by which two persons give themselves to one another, but one that "entrusts the life and identity of the embryo into the power of doctors and biologists and establishes the domination of technology over the origin and destiny of the human person. Such a relationship of domination is in itself contrary to the dignity and equality that must be common to parents and children" (CDF, Donum vitae II, 5). "Under the moral aspect procreation is deprived of its proper perfection when it is not willed as the fruit of the conjugal act, that is to say, of the specific act of the spouses' union .... Only respect for the link between the meanings of the conjugal act and respect for the unity of the human being make possible procreation in conformity with the dignity of the person"  (CDF, Donum vitae II, 4).   

(The next question is: What is adultery? Is divorce the appropriate response?)

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