Several medical practitioners and ethics scholars recently spoke to students at Benedictine College on "How to be a Catholic and Ethical Practitioner." The five panelists fielded questions from students on "how to live according to Catholic teachings and yet still work in the medical field," according to the College.
Speakers at the event included Father Justin Dean, OSB; Phyllis Lieb, MSN, RN; Jackie Harris, MSN, APRN; John Rziha, Ph.D.; and Dr. Gerard Brungardt, MD. They spoke on issues including the anointing of the sick, abortion, embryonic stem cell research, and assisted suicide.
Fr. Justin first spoke on anointing of the sick. He explained that the practice is used to heal both the soul and the body. Lieb spoke on abortion, birth control, and her personal experience working in the delivery room just two years after Roe v. Wade had been put into practice.
“Abortion is the ugliest, most evil thing you can be involved with,” she said.
She went on to explain that birth control, like “The Pill,” can cause strokes, heart attacks and blood clots in users. Birth control pills “literally ruin your body,” she said. She advised the nursing students in the audience to recommend Natural Family Planning to patients because it is easy and does not harm the woman’s body or potentially cause an abortion.
Dr. Brungardt explained that committed Catholics respect life and love the dignity of a human person. However, he explained, “people around you will not share the same values.”
“One always meets another person at the same level one seeks to know them,” he said. He told the nursing students to strive to find out the patient’s greatest needs and concerns.
“Get into the patient’s heart,” he said. “A request to hasten death is a cry for help.”
Rziha, an associate professor of theology at Benedictine College who teaches a course on Christian bioethics, addressed the theme of being an ethical practitioner in an unethical world. He explained that as Catholics we believe in a very logical and rational position.
The Cardinal Newman Society recommends Benedictine College at TheNewmanGuide.com for its strong Catholic identity.
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