Wednesday, October 6, 2010

In Vitro Fertilization

I have been hearing quite a bit about IVF lately. There was the Nobel prize for the scientist involved along with a negative comment from a Vatican spokesman. Quebec has recently announced government funding for IVF. The topic has even come up in our local twins club. The tone has been one of celebration of the wonderfulness of technology and the Catholic church looks like it is anti-science and just not with it.

So what is the response? The first is to deal with the main myth. That IVF allows couples to have children that would otherwise not be able to become parents. That ignores the low tech method of adoption. It is not that God is not providing opportunities to raise children. He is just not doing it the way they want Him to. In fact, if we would stop aborting so many children there would be a much easier time with adoption.

Secondly, we must point out that methods matter. Having a good end does not justify any means used to get there. Essentially you are committing the same violations of chastity and of life that we see in contraception and abortion. In this case the goal is a lot more noble. Children are seen as desirable. Infertility is actually treated like a problem rather than a freedom.

But who knows what God has in mind? Perhaps giving some couples the unfulfilled desire for children is a blessing to society. It reminds all of us that children are a gift from God. Fasting makes us appreciate food. It also makes us appreciate the importance of what we are fasting for.

Nothing is sacred without sacrifice. We say sex is sacred but we are not willing to give up anything out of respect for that sacredness. So then how sacred is it? Same thing with life. We want to be lovers of life. A process like IVF discards life routinely. Sure there is something good to give up. There always is. But morality without sacrifice is no morality at all.

In the grand scheme of things. Much infertility results from STD's, from abortions, and from people contraceptiing during their most fertile years. If you would get rid of those things then IVF is easy to give up. The reason Quebec will pay the high cost is because their birth rate is so low. This is a very small and expensive solution to a much bigger problem. A problem created by embracing a separation of sex, marriage, and procreation.

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