One gets a bit tired of reporting of another escursion into the popular land of heterodoxy from a member of the Catholic clergy; still, oportet ut scandala eveniant and it is at least a consolation to see that whilst members of the clergy do everything possible to pander to the secular mentality, courageous laymen have no problems in telling it straight.
The last example are the contradictory declarations of Mgr. Carrasco, Head of the Pontifical Academy for Life about the recent and controversial announcement of the Nobel Prize for Dr. Edwards, the inventor of in vitro fertilisation.
Mgr. Carrasco appears not to be entirely bad and his official declarations, on several occasions, have struck the right tones; still he seems -like many others – unable to resist the temptation of making compromises with his interlocutor when representing an unpopular position and as a consequence ends up talking nonsense. Let us read his words again :
[Dr. Edwards] “ushered in a new and important chapter in the field of human reproduction in which the best results are visible to everyone, beginning with Louise Brown.”
“New and important chapter?” “Best results?” What is this, Christopher Hitchens talking the Church down? And this, from the Head of the Pontifical Academy for Life? It truly sounds like a spoof, but unfortunately it isn’t…
Thankfully, the Vatican has immediately recognised the blunder and has rapidly corrected the imprudent Monsignor, promptly stating that Carrasco’s declaration was in answer to a journalist’s question (read: he was imprudent and wrong, but without malice) and does not represent the opinion of the Pontifical Academy for Life. I do think that he was the victim of the “agree-itis” so typical of these times; of a mentality in which no one wants to say it straight, lest he appears rude and no one dares to deny some kudos to his opponent, lest he is considered a bigot.
No one? Well, apparently not. It would appear that there are people out there who don’t tarnish their criticism of Dr Edwards with …….. a resounding praise of how good his work was.
The International Federation of Catholic Medical Associations does not leave any merit to Dr. Edwards’ work. They merely recognise as factual the joy given to the misguided parents, but clearly criticise the work of Dr. Warner in itself. No trace of “new and important chapters” here….
Harder still is Lucio Romano, the president of the Italian association Science and Life. Romano’s remarks are extremely damning as whilst he recognises that Edwards was a pioneer of the application of livestock methods to human beings, he also clearly says that this is no progress for humanity, at all.
Basically, what he is saying (though not with such words) is that every Nazi doctor can be said to have been trying to achieve some progress, but he was forgetting an elementary sense of humanity in the process. Dr. Josef Mengele was involved in seminal medical work, too.
None of the statements of the laymen organisations can be called unorthodox in the least. The words of the clergyman in charge of the matter had to be hastily corrected.
These are the times we live in.