Springfield Bishop issues statement on push to legalize assisted suicide

Hampden County

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – There’s a renewed push here in Massachusetts to legalize doctor assisted suicide.

Sunday, Bishop Mitchell Rozanski of the Catholic Diocese of Springfield issued a statement opposing the effort.

According to Rozanski, legalizing physician assisted suicide would send young people the wrong message.

He said we are facing a crisis of teen suicide.

The Bishop said he believes assisting in someone’s death is far from compassionate and pointed to advancements in pain management and hospice care as reasons why it does not need to be legal.

Bishop Mitchell Rozanski statement:

I am deeply disturbed to learn of local initiatives now being considered in support of physician assisted suicide.

In 2012 the voters of the commonwealth carefully considered a similar statewide ballot question and at that time by a clear majority rejected it.

The reasons to oppose it then remain just as valid now.

While supporters deceptively portray this as a compassionate effort, it is far from that, which is why groups representing some of the most vulnerable in our society, the disabled and elderly, remain in strong opposition.

And despite baseless assertions to the contrary, enabling suicide under such vague guidelines leaves the door wide open to abuse and a slippery slope of an ever increasing acceptance.

In a time when we are confronted by a crisis of teen suicide, such an effort would no doubt send our young people a mixed message.

Finally, with advances in pain management and hospice care, it is hard to understand why we need to make suicide legal.

In the strongest terms, I urge that these measures be rejected.Bishop Mitchell T. RozanskiNovember 3 2017

Massachusetts voters rejected right to die legislation already in 2012.

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