Bishops' Letter Condemns Research That Kills

BOSTON, Massachusetts, MARCH 6, 2005 ( Four Massachusetts bishops signed a letter opposing human embryonic stem cell research, an issue being debated by the state’s Legislature.

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In the statement published in The Pilot, the newspaper of the Boston Archdiocese, the bishops proposed John Paul II as a «profound moral witness» of one «who struggles with Parkinson’s-like disabilities and yet continues to plead with scientists to pursue research only through ethical means.»

Some scientists contend that stem cell research on human embryos could lead to discovering cures and treatments for Parkinson’s and other life-threatening illnesses.

But embryonic stem cell research would violate the sanctity of life since it involves the destruction of embryos, the bishops observed.

»We join the Holy Father’s appeal to members of the biotechnology and scientific communities to turn away from research that is both unethical and unnecessary,» the statement said. »Science does not have to kill in order to cure.»

The bishops urged Catholics to voice their concerns regarding the bill by contacting their elected officials.

Archbishop Sean O’Malley of Boston and Bishops George Coleman of Fall River, Timothy McDonnell of Springfield and Robert McManus of Worcester signed the statement.

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