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Pope Francis' reflections: Care affectionately for elderly

Whose life is it anyway: thoughts on assisted suicide

Beautiful metaphor in nature gives us insight into Church'

Bishop hopes 'fictional memoir' appeals to Catholics, non-Catholics

Califorina bishops urge action


placeholder March 23, 2015   •   VOL. 53, NO. 6   •   Oakland, CA
Letters from Readers
Pope Francis' relections

Care affectionately for elderly

Abandonment is the most serious ailment of the aged and also the greatest injustice they can endure. … Those who helped us grow must not be abandoned when they need our help, our love and our tenderness." Seeing the elderly only as a burden "is ugly. It's a sin." As people age, the medical community in general tends to offer them less care and they can, in fact, be abandoned. Belief in the sacredness and dignity of every human life means that "when a life becomes very fragile and approaches the conclusion of its earthly existence, we have a responsibility to help it and accompany it in the best way possible." Obeying the biblical command to honor one's father and mother — to honor one's elders, "today can be translated as the obligation to have extreme respect for and take care of those who, because of their physical or social condition, could be left to die or 'made to die.'"

Pope Francis to members of the Pontifical Academy for Life, physicians and nurses who specialize in hospice and palliative care, on March 5.

Paul Haring/CNS
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