A range of resources outlining the church or medical experts ‘Care First’ approach of support for palliative care services, as opposed to the introduction of so called “voluntary assisted dying” (VAD).
The resources are shared at the recommendation of Archbishop Coleridge as it became clear the issues of VAD and palliative care were not well understood in the community. These are offered in the wake of the conclusion of the 2019 Parliamentary Committee Hearings into aged care, palliative care and the desirability of VAD legislation. The Premier has now referred the Committee’s report to the Law Reform Commission. The Commission commenced its review on 1 July 2020, and is required to provide its final report and draft legislation to Parliament by 1 March 2021.
Become better acquainted with the issues by reading the resources below. As Archbishop Coleridge says, “better end-of-life care begins with better conversations about death and dying and how we can die well in ways that do not undermine the foundational values of our society.”
ResourcesAuthor: Archdiocese of Brisbane
- A Pastoral letter to the People, Clergy and Religious Catholic communities of Queensland. Penned by the Bishops of Queensland, this document heeds Pope Francis’ call to ensure that the elderly, the young and the vulnerable are not cast aside in what he has called a “throw-away culture”. Instead we are all encouraged to approach death and the dying differently, accompanying every person on the way to death and allowing them to love and to be loved to the very end and into eternity.
- For the Common Good – Love is Stronger than Death Penned by Archbishop Mark Coleridge, this document explains the Catholic teachings of end of life care, and why prolonging life at all costs is not part of the Catholic ethic. It also poses some searching questions about what type of society we wish to live in.
- Facts you may not know about palliative care. This fact sheet examines issues around palliative care delivery intrastate, interstate and around the world. It underscores the fact that funding a ‘palliative care first’ approach for the relief of pain and suffering is the truly compassionate way to go.
- Ten facts you may not know about euthanasia and assisted suicide around the world. This fact sheet examines some of the unintended consequences of legalizing euthanasia and assisted suicide in jurisdictions around the world. Queensland can do better than following the errors of others.
- When Life is Ending – Discussing Dying, Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia. Penned by Dr Caroline Ong RSM, who carries the dual wisdom of being a medical doctor and Sister of Mercy, this document takes a pastoral approach to discussions of death and dying.
- Voluntary Assisted Death – The Promise versus the Reality. Penned by medical professional Dr Stephen Parnis, who is well grounded in resisting the legalization of VAD at state and federal levels, this document examines the proposed Western Australian model and highlights the shortfalls between the promise and the reality.
- 2019 Submission by the Catholic Bishops of Queensland to the Parliamentary Committee on Aged Care, Palliative Care, End of Life Care and Voluntary Assisted Dying. The full text of the Bishops Submission to the Parliamentary Health Committee deserves a much closer look as it takes the long view and supports what will be better for the Common Good of society over the long haul.
- Catechism of Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide for Catholics. Some frequently asked questions (FAQ’s) about the implications of euthanasia and assisted suicide for the faithful are addressed through the lens of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.