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Health care
advanced directive
highlights Catholic values

placeholder February 6, 2017   •   VOL. 55, NO. 3   •   Oakland, CA
Letters from Readers
Health care advanced directive
highlights Catholic values

The place many people first encounter the request, "Do you have an advance health care directive?" may be an emergency room. It's not the best environment to consider one's health care options.

Pope Francis
Legal Clinic

When: Tuesday and Thursday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Where: Cathedral of Christ the Light, 2121 Harrison St., Oakland

By appointment; dial:
To counter that, representatives of the Pope Francis Legal Clinic will be on hand Feb. 11 after the World Day of the Sick Mass at the Cathedral of Christ the Light. The attorneys will distribute an advance health care directive published by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

Not only will the copies of the directive be available, but attorneys at the free clinic will be available to answer questions and make appointments with people to help fill them out. The clinic is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays.

You never know when you'll need it. In an emergency, you might have a several-page document thrust in your hands by health care providers.

The document the representatives of the Pope Francis Legal Clinic will be handing out differs from the standard-issue document.

Its first page, for example, notes, in bold, capital letters: CATHOLIC TEACHING CONCERNING END OF LIFE DECISIONS.

The document is "thoughtful and well done," said Tom Greerty, the attorney who directs the Pope Francis Legal Clinic.

It addresses issues such as euthanasia, which it defines as the intentional ending of human life; pain relief; proportionality of life-sustaining medical treatment; nutrition and hydration; and consultation with medical and spiritual advisers.

The principles in the document are drawn from the Declaration on Euthanasia, from 1980 by the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith. Additional information is available at www.usccb.org/prolife.

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