Following the meeting between representatives of the episcopate and Agnes Firmin Le BodoMinister Delegate for Health Professions, Msgr. Jordy was questioned in Christian family. Extract :
During the last bioethics laws, the Church said that it had the impression of being listened to a lot but not heard. Did you feel like you were listened to and heard?
Bishop of Ornellas he himself took up the formula. He pointed out to the minister that, often, on bioethical issues, there is a lot of discussion but little dialogue. The arguments of each other are expressed. But the arguments of those who disagree with those conducting the work are not necessarily integrated. It’s a real question. So we said, “Watch out! This morning I was reading an article by Marcel Gauchet saying that French society is in a terrible situation, at all levels: social downgrading, a series of sovereign realities that no longer work or do not work well: hospital, school… We are asking ourselves questions everywhere. Despair should not be added to despair. And in particular by giving the feeling that we have integrated people into a reflection but that we have not listened to them. And so there are some who do not count or no longer count, and that decisions are made without all French people really being able to participate in this reflection.
Have you noted any points of convergence?
Yes. On the method that will frame this reflection, we mentioned in particular the “peaceful” spirit in which we would like this debate to take place. We said that we needed to be able to listen to each other’s positions and try to find a way to ensure that respect for the human person and fraternity are at the centre. We agree that we need a dialogue that does not live in excess or violence, that can be constructive. But we ask to see.
The precedent of the Estates General of Bioethics does not lead to trust…
The debate can only take place under respectful conditions. There will be the citizens’ convention, within the framework of which French people will be invited to speak, and other debates which will take place, certainly at the local level. I know very well that the last experience, during the last revision of the bioethics laws, ended a bit in a fishtail, I took the liberty of telling the minister as much. I also reminded him that the members of the climate convention, called upon to vote on the quality of what they had done, had given a score of 3.3 out of 10. This means that we must now do things with serious. Because there is a lot of despair in France, a real discontent, and even a kind of violence that is rising in society. This debate is perhaps also an opportunity to have a fundamental reflection on what life is, the end of life, respect for others, support for the person, fraternity. If done well, it may also benefit the quality of social relations as a whole.
Engaging in a “debate” to change the law, isn’t this already influencing the debates in the direction of legalizing assisted suicide and euthanasia?
Of course. This is the principle of the toboggan, as some say. We also hear people refer to polls to say that the French would be “ready”. However, for example, in 2016, a survey was carried out on the end of life by the same institute three weeks apart, with two questions formulated in a slightly different way, and the results were completely contradictory. This shows that depending on how you ask the question, you induce the answer. I also pointed out to Mrs. Firmin Le Bodo that in Oregon, an American state which has chosen to implement assisted suicide, out of 100 people who request this suicide, 50% come to seek the lethal substance and 30% 50% use it. From the first idea to the implementation, there is a whole process and therefore we are in complexity. So it’s up to us to try to allow it to be a debate and not just to ratify things that have already been decided.
The laity expect the Church to express a clear word on these themes. Do you encourage them to also speak out on these subjects, particularly in the media?
Of course. This is the whole meaning of civil society. I remind you that secularism concerns the State, not society. In society, the debate is open. Obviously, I invite Catholics to play their part, in a thoughtful way, and, as the Apostle Peter says in his first epistle, to give reason for the hope that is in us, always with respect.
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Lay people are encouraged to speak out on euthanasia – Riposte-catholique
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