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Remarks by Bishop of Kansas City

Rally Against Human Cloning - September 11th

Dear Friends in Christ,

            Five years ago, on September 11, 2001, America was thrust into a battle that we did not want. Nonetheless, we knew immediately that this violent attack was not just on several commercial airliners, the twin towers of the World Trade Center, and the U.S. Pentagon. The attack was on our freedom and our way of life. In response, it became necessary to establish a vast set of defenses and precautionary systems to protect the legitimate rights of people in our country and beyond.

            We gather today because of a battle not of our own choosing. This attack is against the very way human life is brought into the world. It is an attack on the human embryo at its earliest stage, and it is an assault on the checks and balances that, in responsible government, ought to exist over scientific research. Amendment 2 would grant an unprecedented constitutional permission to conduct human cloning and carry out destructive human embryonic experimentation without any “limitations or disincentives.”

            As such it is an attack on us all: on the dignity and purpose of human life and on the submission of scientific research to a natural code of ethics. For thirty-three years since Roe v. Wade we have witnessed the tragic consequences of a culture that sanctions the killing of innocent human life. In abortion, human life is disposable if unwanted. Now there are those who wish to provide in law a new principle: Some human lives are expendable for the sake of others. They may be created in laboratories and destroyed for their parts. Frozen in vitro human embryos may be similarly used and destroyed.

           This is a battle we didn’t want, but we do not have the luxury of imagining that it isn’t real and life-threatening. We may not be silent, or pretend everything is secure. We are forced again to defend life and to be a voice for those who are “the least of our brothers and sisters.”        

           Your pastors and I have a special obligation to speak out against this evil in our community and state. We must do our part. Dear friends, so must you!

            We need scientists and doctors who are willing to teach the truth about the beginnings of human life, against the deceptions of those who have literally changed the very vocabulary of embryology to suit their purposes. You must speak out.

            We need journalists who are willing to tell both sides of the story, keeping important distinctions between the successes of adult stem cell research which we readily support, and the false hope and hype of embryonic stem cell research, which destroys a unique living human being.

            We need business men and women who will stand up in the Chamber of Commerce and remind their colleagues that they also care very much about the growth and development of our city and our state, but they refuse to be bullied into silence or into supporting business ventures that seek a license for the wholesale manufacturing and destruction of human embryos.

            I will do my part as a shepherd, but you must bring your living faith to bear in the marketplace, the schools, the home, and the workplace.

            The battle we face is fierce. The victory belongs to Christ. Let us pray daily that we may faithfully and generously follow Christ in the defense of human life, in the care of “the least” of His brothers and sisters.

            Let us pray:

            Almighty Father, You have blessed us with the gift of human life, made in Your own image and likeness and redeemed by the Most Precious Blood of your Son. You have entrusted human life into our hands as the first of Your gifts to us. We beg You to assist us, by Your grace, so that we may do all in our capacity to defend the inviolable dignity of every human life, from the moment of its inception to the moment of natural death.

            In the present crisis which we face, bless us, dear and all-merciful Lord, with wisdom and courage to defend the right to life of our brothers and sisters at the embryonic stage of development. Help us to proclaim the truth with love, so that our State of Missouri may fulfill its most fundamental duty, to promote the common good by protecting and promoting all human life, without exclusion.

            We ask this, all-loving God and Father, through Jesus Christ, Your Son and our Lord, in the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.