Friday, June 30, 2006

Fr. Ken Riley And Stem-Cell Research

I'm very interested in stem-cell research. The Catholic Church isn't in favor of embryoic stem-cell research. Actually, the latest statement from Cardinal Alfonso Lopez Trujillo, head of the Pontifical Council for the Family isn't that pleasant:

Embryonic stem cell research, like abortion, involves the destruction of human life and those involved face excommunication from the Catholic Church, said the Vatican’s chief family official.
“Excommunication applies to all women, doctors and researchers who eliminate embryos,” the cardinal said.


In my opinion, this is going way too far. Jesus of the Bible is someone who embraced all people, sinners before saints. What happened to that Jesus?

Anyway, when I read about Fr. Riley's stem-cell donation, I thought I'd inform my readers that the Catholic Church isn't very rigid when it comes to adult stem cells donation. Catholic Online reports:

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (The Catholic Key) – Like all priests, Father Ken Riley's mission is to save souls. Thanks to a decision he made years ago, he saved a life.

Father Riley, pastor at St. Bernadette Parish here, finally got to meet the woman he saved nearly three years ago. The surprise meeting with Lee Ann Collins happened during the Adair County (Ky.) Relay for Life rally June 9. Before that, the two had only spoken by phone.
Father Riley is a big fan of the bumper sticker that says "Don't take your organs to heaven, heaven knows we need them here." He said that message frequently "makes homilies with me."

Then Fr. Riley explains the Catholic Church's position on stem-cell research:

With the stem-cell debate raging across Missouri and the world, Father Riley thought this would be a good time to clear up misconceptions about stem-cell research and the Catholic Church's position on the issue.

"Catholics are not anti-stem-cell," Father Riley said, the tone of his voice rising with each word. "It makes for a good sound bite on the news, but nothing could be further from the truth.”

"Catholics are very much for stem-cell research and the treatment options developed from adult stem cells, placenta blood, umbilical cord blood.

"The only time the church is anti-stem-cell is when embryonic stem-cells are used because we believe that is a human life and all human life has dignity. Therefore, to destroy an embryo to save another person, is destroying life, which we don't believe in," he said.


I wonder how many newspapers and TV stations will pick up his story. Probably very few.


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