Bp. Stika (D. Knoxville) on true human ecology, Planned Parenthood, trauma

Reading the news around the Catholic world you would think that prelates and priests and lay faithful alike are going absolutely loony about climate change.  Since Laudato si’ it seems as if those who read selectively have been rushing lemming-like to the ever warming sea.  Running screaming waving their front legs… which lemmings can’t really do and still run.  But I digress.

And so it is refreshing to read what the Bishop of Knoxville said about ecology… about human ecology.

From knoxnews.com:

Bishop Richard Stika: Human ecology recognizes value of life from conception to death

Decades ago, people on another continent shocked the world, saying, “We did not know,” regarding the atrocities they chose to ignore.

And before that, our own country enshrined as the law of its land the slavery of those we deemed less than human.

Yet today, we encounter a similar troubling indifference, and worse: the suppression of the truth regarding the most vulnerable among us.

Evil without its makeup [especially the eye-liner… don’t forget the eye-liner] — that is the reality exposed in the unfolding series of videos revealing how the unborn life of a baby, deemed worthless by Planned Parenthood while in the womb, has value only in the sale of its dissected human parts. [human parts… baby human parts… human parts of human babies, because babies are humans]

What has become of our humanity when our conscience is not sickened by the callous talk of less “crunchy” methods to fetch a greater dollar value for the baby limbs and organs that will be separated in a petri dish for sale like a laboratory rat?

But if one is to believe Planned Parenthood, the real aggressor is the Center for Medical Progress, which shined a light into the arena of darkness and the Frankenstein-like business of trafficking in human parts, which is prohibited by federal law. [Blaming the messenger is a time honored tradition.]

If Planned Parenthood’s definition of an extremist is one who believes in the sanctity of the unborn and the protection that these vulnerable lives should be afforded, then I, too, am an extremist. I challenge everyone to view these videos.

If someone watched the major news outlets during these past few weeks, one story dominated the headlines in most reports: the poaching of Cecil the lion in Africa. [I didn’t pay much attention to that story, but I read somewhere that Cecil had developed a taste for man flesh .. rather like Planned Parenthood.  How ironic that the name of Planned Parenthood is also Cecil.  Cecile.] Care for the environment and of all God’s good creation is important, but have we forgotten a far greater ecology that calls for our attention?

Pope Francis recently highlighted the “throwaway” mentality behind not only our failure to care for our earthly environment but also, and more importantly, our failure to respect a human ecology.

A true human ecology is one that recognizes the inestimable value of life from conception to natural death, be it the life of the unborn in the womb, the poor, the sick and elderly, and even those on death row who themselves may have brutally taken another life. This human ecology calls us to especially reach out with love, mercy and healing toward those who may be contemplating, or have chosen to have, an abortion.

There is so much senseless violence in our country today, emblematic of this “throwaway” mentality that cheapens the value of human life. Should we be surprised by the growing violence in our society when the brain or liver of an 11-week-old fetus has a value of $75?

So I ask the question Pope Francis asked: “How can we genuinely teach the importance of concern for other vulnerable beings … if we fail to protect a human embryo, even when its presence is uncomfortable and creates difficulties?”

If only the half-billion dollars of taxpayer money given to Planned Parenthood each year could be redirected to the thousands of pregnancy help centers, which offer loving and compassionate options that instead affirm the sanctity and dignity of both mother and child.

[This is good… ] If the ongoing coverage of Planned Parenthood causes anyone to experience revived trauma from a past abortion, [because that’s what it causes] be assured that any and all people will be welcomed with compassionate, nonjudgmental, confidential assistance through the Catholic Church’s post-abortion healing ministry, Project Rachel, www.projectrachel.com. And anyone who is scared and needs help with a pregnancy can contact our Catholic Charities of manast Tennessee Pregnancy Help Center at 1-877-990-4673.

The Most Rev. Richard F. Stika is bishop of the Diocese of Knoxville.

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  1. Eugene says:

    What a far better letter this is, than the one written by the Pope’s man in Chicago who dared to compare the dismemberment and selling of human parts to the problem of unemployment and illegal immigration. God have mercy on us.
    BUT he gets invited to the October synod..

  2. my kidz mom says:

    Outrage over Cecil the Lion.
    But praise for Cecile the Lyin’.

    Lord help us.

  3. iamlucky13 says:

    “how the unborn life of a baby, deemed worthless by Planned Parenthood while in the womb, has value only in the sale of its dissected human parts.

    What has become of our humanity when our conscience is not sickened”

    It’s bad enough as is, but wait until this controversy runs its course. Confronted with even the people telling the lie that a fetus is “only a blob of tissue” describing babies in very non-blob-like ways, the next step in the gradual dulling of human consciences is more widespread acceptance that abortion is ugly, but justified for the uses of those babies’ organs.

    I might actually be more concerned if more people were paying attention to the videos and consciously accepting the graphic knowledge of what Planned Parenthood does, as opposed to the way most of them are choosing to ignore the videos, and might still be capable of a change of heart.

  4. Venerator Sti Lot says:

    Dr. Trasancos has given excellent, if saddening, context on the scope of the horrors, here:


    iamlucky13 has put a finger on a very important aspect (which also comes implicitly into Dr. Trasancos’s article): the attempted justifications.

    Fr. Rutler (as linked by Fr. Z not so long ago) noted an example from the Nuremberg trials.

    Paul Ramsey (I think in the first edition of The Patient as Person: Explorations in Medical Ethics [Yale, 1970]) tackled the not yet so widely (in)famous Kevorkian as another example. (See the current English “Jack Kevorkian” Wikipedia article for some things relevant to his advocacy of the ‘golden opportunities’ of experimentation and harvesting where those on death row are concerned.)

  5. Suburbanbanshee says:

    Venerator Sti Lot’s link is an important one, as it notes a major medical/scientific paper in a major journal from before Roe v. Wade, which admitted going to horrible lengths for research but which has not been noticed or decried. Probably one could run a search for other papers using similar methods.

  6. Legisperitus says:

    That Cecil/Cecile thing may be the Observation of the Month. Both dangerous beasts lured out of hiding and shot down in some sense.

  7. JonPatrick says:

    Based on the latest diatribe in our local left wing rag here in Lewiston/Auburn, the latest excuse is that the videos were faked. No evidence of this is given of course.And of course they repeat the statistic that “only 3%” of PP’s work involves abortions. I suspect that only about 3% of the work of the SS in WW2 involved exterminating Jews, so I guess the SS was okay after all.

  8. Kerry says:

    To that “only 3%” one might reply, “Oh, I thought an abortion took a lot longer than that”.

  9. DonL says:

    I’d comment, but I seek not to be “obsessed” with things such as the mere taking of loves and selling of innocent baby parts.

  10. SKAY says:

    Last week I was listening to a radio show where this subject was being discussed and the host was
    expressing his outrage about what PP is doing. A caller- identifyng himself as an MD – tried to
    point out that since the aborted fetuses were already dead it would be a shame not to do research
    that would do great good for the future of medicine.
    I guess “First do no harm” is no longer taught in medical schools .
    I just could not believe what I was hearing—from a “Doctor”.
    It occurred to me that he probably would not have a problem with euthanasia either.

  11. Supertradmum says:

    I go to daily Mass as well as Sunday, and to this day, have heard no reference to the videos from the pulpit or any condemnation of PP or abortion, period. Nothing in our diocesan Catholic newspaper that I saw, except a condemnation of those who made the videos in an article–look up Catholic Messenger.

    Silence is consent in the law.

  12. Massachusetts Catholic says:

    Archbishop Cupich’s statement on the Planned Parenthood videos not only harms those in his archdiocese who look to him for guidance, but also incites progressives elsewhere to turn outrage over the dismemberment of infants into “dialogue” on all social justice issues. (Are joblessness and abortion equivalent?) An excerpt from Cupich’s statement reprinted in a Concord MA parish blog:

    “This newest evidence about the disregard for the value of human life also offers the opportunity to reaffirm our commitment as a nation to a consistent ethic of life. While commerce in the remains of defenseless children is particularly repulsive, we should be no less appalled by the indifference toward the thousands of people who die daily for lack of decent medical care; who are denied rights by a broken immigration system and by racism; who suffer in hunger, joblessness and want; who pay the price of violence in gun-saturated neighborhoods; or who are executed by the state in the name of justice.

    “The open and generous nature of the American people has the capacity to astonish and push boundaries. We crowdfund, sign petitions, dump buckets of ice on ourselves and embrace new ways of relating to our environment. Can we use our shared outrage at all these affronts to human dignity to unite us and begin a national dialogue on the worth of human life?

    “If we create a framework for decision-making that is biased toward life, supportive of families and fair to people of all circumstances, our policies, legislation and commercial decisions will be vastly different. We then can begin to take needed actions and reforms that make a difference in the lives of those who are discarded and considered disposable.

    “The nation’s children, families, poor, workers and senior citizens deserve more than lip service. They deserve more than outrage. They deserve real support, protection and solid action.

    “And so do we to be true to what is best in us.”


  13. oakdiocesegirl says:

    55 US Senators voting “Yes” was not enough to stop Federal funding of Planned Parenthood.

    The following 12 US Senators (dirty dozen?) voted NOT to defund Planned Parenthood after the release of 5 YouTube videos detailed the gruesome dismemberment of human fetuses during PP abortions, in preparation for handing over the valuable body parts for research.

    Wikipedia identifies each of them as “Roman Catholic”. 12 people to Pray For:

    Maria Cantwell
    Kirsten Gillebrand
    Heidi Heitkamp
    Claire McCaskill
    Barbara Mikulski
    Patty Murray
    Bob Casey, Jr.
    Richard Durbin
    Tim Kaine
    Patrick Leahy
    Ed Markey
    Jack Reed

    Pro-Abortion Minority Blocks Senate Bill to Defund Planned Parenthood Despite Bipartisan Majority’s Vote to Cut Tax Dollars | American Center for Law and Justice

  14. Pingback: EcoLinks 08.11.15 | Acton PowerBlog

  15. Dienekes says:

    Over twenty years ago my Depression-era, high school-drop out, “Greatest Generation” veteran father turned to me and sadly asked me, “Do you think our country has become decadent?” He caught me off-balance, and I answered that I wasn’t sure. However, he wasn’t in the habit of playing word games, and I had to think about it, long and hard. He’s been gone for ten years now, God bless him. But to this day, his words still haunt me.

    Actually, it’s worse now. Where the word “decadent” seemed fitting, I now use “depraved”. To say that I am discomfited on ethical, philosophical, political, and theological grounds is to understate matters. Due to a long-standing character flaw, I also have what Leonidas referred to as a problem with kneeling. Behaving badly is a bad thing, but I suspect that “behaving too well” can be even worse.

  16. Venerator Sti Lot says:

    At least Archbishop Chaput has implicitly answered Archbishop Cupich, and explicitly taken to task “every Catholic senator who voted against” the recent defunding measure:


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