Catholic Jesuit University Professors Promoting Assisted Suicide

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jun 22, 2011   |   10:25PM   |  

Although the nation’s Catholic bishops recently released a new statement condemning assisted suicide and promoting efforts to help patients and the elderly find positive alternatives, a new report from a Catholic educational watchdog group finds assisted suicide advocates are teaching at Jesuit universities across the country.

The Cardinal Newman Society report shows the promotion of the anti-life practice despite the release last Thursday by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops of the paper called “To Live Each Day with Dignity: A Statement on Physician-Assisted Suicide.” The bishops cautioned about an “aggressive nationwide campaign” promoted by “assited suicide proponents.”

Published Tuesday in Crisis Magazine, the Cardinal Newman Society report has CNS president Patrick Reilly uncovering scandalous associations between the assisted suicide movement and current and recent professors at four major Jesuit universities: Georgetown University, Marquette University, Santa Clara University and Boston College.

Reilly noted that it was a “particular irony” that the assisted suicide statement should be released simultaneously with the U.S. bishops’ ongoing 2011 review of Catholic colleges’ implementation of Vatican guidelines for Catholic higher education in the 1990 constitution Ex corde Ecclesiae.

Writes Reilly: “[These professors] have done more than betray the Catholic Church when they advocated assisted suicide from their platforms at Jesuit universities. 

Their primary credentials are (or were) as Jesuit university professors.  Their participation in academic societies and symposia and journals has depended on their teaching and research positions at major universities.  When dealing with ethical issues, no doubt their affiliation with Catholic universities has opened many doors.

“In no small way, then, Catholic universities are partly responsible for such professors’ influence by virtue of their employment.  Academic freedom protects professors’ rights to seek truth according to the methods of their discipline.  But when professors deny the truths of faith and disregard the common good—especially of those whose lives are snuffed out prematurely—they violate the mission of a Catholic university.”

The special report “Bishops Betrayed on Assisted Suicide” is published at Crisis Magazine. See