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Life: a gift for man to treasure

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Life is a gift from God to appreciate and live out as best we can. It should be given great importance and be treasured with all our might. Life also brings about question marks, for example whether abortion and euthanasia are acceptable, what they actually are, and if killing in self defence is acceptable.

Abortion is the premature termination of a pregnancy, resulting in the death of the foetus (the baby inside the mother’s womb). Abortion and contraception are NOT the same. Contraception simply disables the sperm from reaching the ovum so fertilisation is not able to proceed, while abortion occurs when a new life ALREADY exists and this new life is being killed. Abortion is a ‘solution’ for women who have been careless with sex, women who are not able to raise a child or women who have been raped.

The Church labels abortion as a grave offence against God, since a creation of God is being destroyed. The foetus is actually a life, since fertilisation has occurred. Every human life has dignity, and is created in the image of God: “a wonder am I, and all your works are wonders” (Ps 139, 14-15). If a woman is pregnant for what ever reason, and would not like to raise a child, she can give birth to the child and then put him up for adoption. Like this, a creation is not being destroyed, but being given to a family who will want him/her.

Euthanasia refers to those situations when one brings death upon somebody else who is usually terminally ill and in pain in order for the person to be rid of the suffering. Euthanasia can be of two types; Voluntary Euthanasia, when death is asked for by the patient but the patient can’t kill himself. This is a type of assisted suicide. Involuntary Euthanasia, where death is caused by a lethal injection or by switching off a life-supporting machine WITHOUT the patient’s consent, is murder.

Euthanasia is also seen as a grave offence against God, since a life is going to be ended, voluntary or involuntary. One shouldn’t even think of ending life! One should be much more thankful to God for being able to even see the light or feel the bed he/she sleeps on! The Church wants us to see the true value of life, which is priceless. The person must have faith and hope in God to pass through the traumatic times he is in, and look to his family or friends.

Self-defence is when someone fights back to protect his/her or someone’s life. Killing under self-defence, in extreme cases, is acceptable. It is not only someone’s right but someone’s duty in cases where someone is responsible for someone else’s life, for the good of the family or for the good of the country. However, your or your loved one’s life must be in mortal danger, you can not defend yourself without killing the person and one must avoid causing harm if one’s motivation is driven by hatred or vengeance.

Saying all this, the last word should be that no matter the circumstances abortion and euthanasia should never be ‘solutions’, however killing in self-defence under extreme conditions is acceptable. One must truly learn to value his life and look to God, the artist of all things!

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