Catholic doctors in the UK advised to emigrate

From The Tablet. (H/T Jay Richards)


Catholic doctors who follow church teaching on sexual ethics cannot work as gynaecologists in Britain, the Catholic Medical Association (CMA) conference was told.

Charlie O’Donnell, a consultant in emergency and intensive care medicine, said the best advice he could give to an “orthodox” Catholic wishing to specialise in obstetrics and gynaecology would be to “emigrate”.

Dr O’Donnell told the conference at Ealing Abbey, west London, on 17 May that a Catholic training to be a consultant in obstetrics and gynaecology would soon find he or she had conscientious objections to such tasks as prescribing artificial contraceptives, giving unmarried couples fertility treatment or Viagra to gay couples.

He said that supervising consultants do not have the backup to allow trainees to opt out if they have moral objections to such work. However, conscientious objection to abortion is allowed because of specific provision in the 1967 Abortion Act.

“To be a sound Catholic regarding sexual ethics it is not possible to train as a consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist but this is not because of discrimination against Catholics. There is a total conflict of culture of what is good sex, a dichotomy of belief between what we as Christians believe is good overall for the individual and what secular society believes,” said Dr O’Donnell.

Last week the president of the CMA, Dr Robert Hardie sought clarification concerning reports that doctors and nurses with conscientious objections would be barred from obtaining a diploma from the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Health (FSRH). Medical staff normally need the diploma to work in sexual and reproductive healthcare.

The Catholic Church is an interesting case. Although some Catholics are economically conservative, by and large Catholics tend to vote for bigger government, higher taxes and more regulations. Many now think that the point of their religion is to help the poor, and there is generally less emphasis on truth, theology and apologetics than in Protestantism. Well, what happens when lay Catholics begin to think their faith is about spreading the wealth around? They vote for secular politicians who promise to do that. As the secular government grows larger and larger, there is less room for faith commitments in the public square. The very Catholics who voted for Labour and the Liberal Democrats to “help the poor” are the ones running into problems now. I wonder if they have learned their lesson.

3 thoughts on “Catholic doctors in the UK advised to emigrate”

  1. Wintery Knight, I rarely disagree with you. But I going to now, and I hope you will have the courtesy to publish this.
    I think the Catholics who vote and think like what you are describing are not regular church goers or they live in New York, Detroit, Chicago, Seattle. We have a ton of dissidents who stay in the Church, cause problems and do not accept Catholic teachings. Some are in positions of authority. Plus in the United States, lapsed Catholics represent the largest denomination!
    It’s a hardship because some dioceses are controlled by liberals who persecute the REAL Catholics. But Jesus warned in the Book of Revelation if the local Church did not change its heart, He would come and take its lamp stand. That has happened to tons of local Catholic Churches (dioceses, regions) throughout history, while the Roman Catholic Church itself has thrived and grown throughout history. Witness the fact that we lost 9 million Catholics in the Reformation in Europe and gained 9 million Catholics at the same time in Mexico. And those people in Mexico at that time sacrificed 100s of thousands of people in just one weekend before their conversion! I am always praying it won’t happen to us in the U.S.. But I thoroughly agree with God’s plan to cut off the dead branches. Let them go!
    The faithful Catholic is not as you described. In fact, your statement “there is generally less emphasis on truth, theology and apologetics than in Protestantism.” is grotesquely wrong. That’s like me tarring your Church with the pro-abortion, pro-SSM label, because these things are supported by Methodists or the Church of England, which by the way are also Protestant Churches. They are falling apart fast because of their liberal stances.
    There are many faithful lay Catholics who are experts in theology and apologetics, including my cradle Catholic husband, and numerous other lay Catholics and converts from Protestantism. You’ve heard of Scott Hahn? Roman Catholic, ex Presbyterian minister, who was an apologetics junky, and found the fulfillment of everything he had ever read in Bible in the Roman Catholic Mass. He was blown away the first time he attended. Try reading some of his books. (I recommend Rome Sweet Home and The Lamb’s Supper.) They are chock full of apologetics and are all biblically based. In fact, starting with Pope John Paul II, all the popes have begun to explain Catholic teaching totally using the Scripture. You could read any papal encyclical or the Catholic Catechism itself and get loads of biblical apologetics and references.
    I am a conservative faithful Roman Catholic with two grad degrees in economics, and I am more oriented to the thinking of the Tea Party, although I don’t think we’ll ever find any firm foundation in human institutions, only in Jesus Christ, the Rock rejected by the builders, who became the Cornerstone.
    I agree that the Catholic Church in the United States jived more toward the Democratic Party historically, and I used to be a Democrat, but I haven’t voted for a Democrat since Jimmy Carter because starting with him they were all pro-abortion. Murder trumps poverty. Plus in the U.S. I believe the poor in the United States are not materially poor. The greatest poverty is no love, quoth Mother Teresa of Calcutta, and that’s what we got in spades in the United States. We have 57 million helpless Americans — our children — murdered since 1973, and now wholesale murder of the elderly, the sick and Veterans. I guarantee you that what’s happening to the Veterans is just a tip of the iceberg. Massachusetts General Hospital has a universal “Do not Resuscitate” order. Child choking on meat or suffering from asthma? Toast! DNR! The hospital doesn’t care. They can die. That’s no love, my friend. No love at all. God bless you. Susan Fox


    1. I think it’s good when Catholics are for free markets and free enterprise. But when elections are held, evangelicals are 90% for the pro-liberty candidate, and Catholics favor the socialist. Maybe there are a lot of people claiming to be Catholic who are not, but when I listen to the current Pope, it’s all socialism, all the time. And that’s not recent. (I.e. – the Jesuits and Latin America) You guys need to discipline yourselves to be bound by the Bible, which favors private property, freedom and individual charity.


  2. “The very Catholics who voted for Labour and the Liberal Democrats to ‘help the poor’ are the ones running into problems now.”

    The problem is that there simply are no major conservative parties to vote for any more in the UK (with the exception of powerless fringe parties like UKIP). The choice we’re left with is “which center-to-extreme left wing party would you like to vote for?”

    Don’t forget, it was ‘conservative’ politician David Cameron and his party who forced SSM on us. The fact that they are in a coalition government with the Liberal Democrats is neither here nor there; the UK “conservative” party is pretty much center left on most of the major issues.

    We can vote all we like in Britain for UKIP or the few remaining ‘Conservatives’. Nothing is going to change, since there are more of them than there are of us. What we have is Liberal mob-rule.

    “Many now think that the point of their religion is to help the poor, and there is generally less emphasis on truth, theology and apologetics than in Protestantism.”

    This is not the case in my experience. In the UK all the qualities you mentioned (i.e. truth, theology and apologetics) are conspicuously absent from all the major denominations. This isn’t a specifically Catholic problem by any means.


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