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"Does theology have any relevance to the problem of life and death?" According to John Heywood Thomas the answer is an unequivocal yes. A largely pers.
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The Theology of Death aims to offer some sharply defined schemes to focus thought in a Christian environment in which death, hell and heaven have almost lost their place.

Theology and Issues of Life and Death: A Review – Jason Goroncy

The topic of hope is a key element and the book explores the birth and fostering of hope within Christian traditions. Body, bones and breath of life 3.


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Martyrs, altars and the bread of life 4. Judge of living and the dead 5. And for our salvation 6. The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away 7. The Lord and Giver of Life 8. Integrity and eternal life.

Professor Douglas James Davies

Davies' erudition and finesse with is subject is remarkable, yet his style remains accessible. It would be very helpful for someone studying death ritual or comparative religion. Zecher, Theological Book Review. Adherents are opposed, at the very least, to unjust war , while some adherents also profess pacifism , or opposition to all war.

Theology and Ethics

The phrase "consistent ethic of life" was used as far back as a speech delivered by then-Archbishop Humberto Medeiros of Boston. In , Roman Catholic pacifist Eileen Egan coined the phrase "seamless garment" to describe a holistic reverence for life. The seamless garment philosophy holds that issues such as abortion, capital punishment, militarism, euthanasia, social injustice, and economic injustice all demand a consistent application of moral principles that value the sacredness of human life.

You can't protect some life and not others. Cardinal Joseph Bernardin of Chicago helped publicize the consistent life ethic idea in However, he quickly expanded the scope of his view to include all aspects of human life.


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In one of the first speeches given on the topic at Fordham University, Bernardin said: Bernardin told an audience in Portland, Oregon: Bernardin drew his stance from New Testament principles, specifically of forgiveness and reconciliation, yet he argued that neither the themes nor the content generated from those themes were specifically Christian. Bernardin and other advocates of this ethic sought to form a consistent policy that would link abortion, capital punishment, economic injustice, euthanasia, and unjust war.

By relying on fundamental principles, Bernardin also sought to coordinate work on several different spheres of Catholic moral theology.


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In addition, Bernardin argued that since the s the church had moved against its own historical, casuistic exceptions to the protection of life. The non-profit organization Consistent Life Network, founded in as the Seamless Garment Network, promotes adherence to the ethic through education and non-violent action. In the US, several groups have promoted the "consistent ethic of life" approach, including the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and the American Solidarity Party , a Christian Democratic political organization.

Other secular groups supporting a consistent ethic of life position include Rehumanize International formerly known as Life Matters Journal [15] [16] and New Wave Feminists. According to Michael Leach, "If one contends, as we do, that the right of every fetus to be born should be protected by civil law and supported by civil consensus, then our moral, political and economic responsibilities do not stop at the moment of birth.

Specifically, he emphasized the value and inviolability of human life, from conception until natural death. Rather than "thinking of a pregnant women and her fetus as being adversaries battling over exclusive rights, the right of a woman to control her body versus the right of the fetus to live long enough to control hers", a consistent life ethic would view both as valuable and important, and seek to provide both all the support they needed to live and live well. Traditionally, arguments for the death penalty focus on the idea that it: Bernardin and some other consistent life ethic advocates recognize the right of the state to use capital punishment.

However, they reject the necessity of this type of punishment for many reasons, arguing that there are more appropriate and effective ways for the state to defend its people.

Assisted Death & The Value of Life: Crash Course Philosophy #45

Many consistent life ethic advocates call for a total abolition of the death penalty. The consistent ethic's opposition to capital punishment is rooted in the conviction that an atmosphere of respect for life must pervade a society, and resorting to the death penalty does not support this attitude. One out-spoken anti-death penalty activist is Sister Helen Prejean.

Review! Theology and Issues of Life and Death

An Eyewitness Account to Wrongful Executions are autobiographical accounts of the time she spent ministering to death row inmates. Bernardin understood the consistent life ethic as implying a societal responsibility to provide adequate health care for all, especially the poor. As such, appeals to the consistent life ethic have been made in support of universal health care.

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The consistent life ethic has been invoked to include care for immigrants and refugees. One criticism made of the consistent life ethic position is that it inadvertently helped provide "cover" or support for politicians who supported legalized abortion or wanted to minimize this issue, a circumstance that Bernardin himself both recognized and deplored. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

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Part of a series on Christian democracy Organizations. Catholic Church and abortion. Catholic Church and capital punishment. Christian democracy portal Catholicism portal. Retrieved 18 September Retrieved 2 February The God of Peace: Toward A Theology of Nonviolence.