Speech on Religion

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Speech on Religion

Good morning/afternoon. The ethical issue I will be discussing is IVF,

in relation to the Christian religions Catholic and Anglican.

IVF is used in cases of infertility –where the woman’s fallopian tubes

are absent or blocked, the men’s sperm count is low, or the couple’s

infertility is unexplained. It is an assisted reproductive technology

in which one or more eggs are fertilized outside a female’s body. To

do this, eggs are collected from the ovaries and placed in a dish with

a large number of sperm for approx. 18 hours. The eggs are then placed

in a special growth medium which allows fertilization to occur.

Afterwards the embryo is either transferred back into the woman’s

uterus or frozen and stored for later use.

IVF has been a source of moral, ethical and religious controversy

since its development. Although members of all religious groups can be

found on both sides of the issue, the major opposition has come from

the Roman Catholic Church. In 1987, the church issued a doctrinal

statement opposing IVF on 3 grounds; the destruction of human embryos

not used for implantation, the possibility of IVF by a sperm donor

other than the husband-thus removing reproduction form the marital

context, and finally the severing of an essential connection between

the nuptial act and procreation. The use of IVF is said to violate the

delicate innocence of those created, as God, their creator has not

given them the gift of life, and therefore the fundamental value of

life has been lost.

Catholics believe it is immoral to produce human embryos destined to

be exploited as disposable biological material. In the usual practice

of IVF, not all embryos are transferred to the woman’s body; some are

destroyed. By acting in this way, the scientist is said to take the

place of God. Even though he may be unaware of this, he sets himself

up as the master of others destiny, by way of arbitrarily choosing

whom he will allow to live and who will die, resulting in the death of
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