Tag Archives: Euthanasia

EFC Webinar Tackles Huge Issue

Last week, Bruce Clemenger, president of The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada (EFC), sat down with Karen Stiller, a senior editor of Faith Today, to talk about euthanasia.Needle photo

We had an invisible audience, those who had signed up and listened in on the EFC’s first foray into the world of webinars.

We had been talking about webinars for a while — thinking they would be an effective way to both offer and receive wisdom, insight and action points on some of the crucial issues facing Canada today.

The issue of euthanasia and assisted suicide was the final push for us to complete a crash course on webinars, sit down in front of two microphones and our laptops (being careful not to spill our giant glasses of water of course) and have a conversation  we thought was important.

Just over two months ago, the Supreme Court of Canada  in a unanimous ruling, struck down Canada’s laws surrounding euthanasia and assisted suicide. The Court ruled that the law that made it illegal for anyone to help people end their own lives should be amended to allow doctors to help in specific situations.

The court has given federal and provincial governments 12 months to craft legislation to respond to that ruling. If the government doesn’t write a new law, the court’s exemption for physicians will become the new status-quo in Canada.

Euthanasia and sanctity of life issues are some of the most pressing challenges facing Canadians and parliamentarians today.

The EFC  has long been a voice for the sanctity of life, and a voice against euthanasia and assisted suicide in Canada. And Faith Today is a magazine where we try to translate some of these issues into features and news pieces that serve and inform our readers along the way. The webinar brought those worlds together. It is posted now for anyone to listen to. We will have more coming down the pipe.

Listen here.

Watch for the May/June issue of Faith Today as we explore the ethics of euthanasia and Canada’s “seismic shift” with ethicist and columnist Margaret Somerville. Subscribe today!

Stop Being So Meek About Euthanasia! Charles Lewis Interview

Charles Lewis is a familiar name to many Canadians as a veteran journalist with 33 years of experience in the newspaper industry. For the last 15 years he was with the National Post, often covering religion.Screen Shot 2014-11-27 at 1.12.36 PM

Since his recent retirement, Lewis has turned his attention to the issue of euthanasia in Canada. He speaks to churches and other groups about his own experience with chronic pain and the dangers of legalized euthanasia. The Nov/Dec issue of Faith Today has a short story about Lewis’ passion for this issue and his concern for Canada. We decided to go further with Lewis and interview him about why he is so concerned – and why we all should be.

 FT: You are a well-known Catholic Canadian. Fighting euthanasia together would seem a place where Catholics and Evangelicals can work together.

CL: First of all, having spent about 33 years in media, 15 of those at the National Post covering religion, what I found out was that of course Evangelicals and Catholics have many things in common, many social issues. That shouldn’t be a surprise. We are in the camp of orthodox Christians.

What we have in common is a belief that life issues are extremely important. That goes for abortion and end of life care, as opposed to end of life killing, which is what euthanasia is.

The other thing similar is that both groups have not been very quick to pick up on this.

Both groups suffer from some Christian shyness; this is from my perspective as a reporter. I don’t have studies to base it on. We have become afraid. We don’t want to admit we are Christian because a lot of people find that off-putting and frightening. We want to keep our friends from getting irritated. Also, we fear that if we come out on an issue officially, people will write it off as another one of those Christian things trying to shove our morality on people. That has been a common theme in this debate on euthanasia.

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