Heart  of the Church


Reflections - 2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year B

from Sue and Mary,

Baby by Victoria via PIxabay
'Baby' by Victoria via Pixabay

In early January we reflected on the readings from the second week in ordinary time, including 1 Corinthians 6:14c-15a, 17-20. One companion mentioned reading an article about Pope Francis' advocacy for a ban on maternal surrogacy, as well as his opposition to in vitro fertilization. Our small community discussed IVF and surrogacy, including the challenge of balancing positive outcomes with potential abuses.

We recognize that in our modern societies we face complex ethical issues. In the case of surrogacy and IVF, advances in medicine and broadened social options have impacted decisions around child bearing.

Several personal examples were given to illustrate cases where in vitro fertilization in particular allowed families to live their call to have children. One person told us about her son's experience. He and his wife had difficulty conceiving, and as she shared, 'when they conceived Rebecca Grace they were over the moon.' At 21 weeks Rebecca was born, but only lived 27minutes. Later the couple conceived another child through in vitro who is now, at age 12, a joy to his family.

We acknowledged the immeasurable gift children are to all of us, and the dangers in seeing children as a commodity. These dangers include the risk of putting women in a position where their reproductive capabilities are also made a commodity. Some examples we discussed included women who are forced into carrying children for others against their will and cases where a child is rejected in a surrogacy situation when he or she has a handicap or doesn't meet the expectation of the prospective parents.

We are grateful that we can seek to deepen our understanding of these and all issues through open and trusting conversation in our community. We cherish in each other the image of Christ who calls us to be a loving neighbor.