There are those, however, who are so in thrall to the spirit of the age that they have lost all critical faculties in relation to 'modernity' or 'post modernity' (or whatever we choose to call the contemporary philosophical or theological scene in our uniquely narcissistic period of history)
The support by some from within the Body of Christ for so-called "assisted dying" is a sad but unsurprising example, and essentially comes as a result of their failure even to attempt to understand the complexities of the Christian moral and ethical tradition before seeking to distance themselves from it. We constantly seek to stand outside and judge that which should be interrogating us.
Yes, we live in a 'democracy' (and worryingly, one which now repeatedly fails to respect the consciences of those who refuse to fall in step with fashionable trends) but these are the new 'German Christians,' those whose fundamental concern is always to be 'on the side of history,' always in tune with the culture of the day, in this case those whose self-proclaimed 'humanitarian' instincts will lead to the death of civilisation and the substitution of an infinitely elastic subjective and emotional narrative in place of a rigorous rule of respect for human life which itself has to go beyond the appalling suffering of 'hard cases' in order to protect us all.
In the Christian tradition (indeed, in the tradition we also inherited and developed from the ancient Greeks and Romans) doctors do not intentionally seek to kill: as the world found out in the 1940s, there are some rather good reasons for that...
Moreover, those who cannot distinguish between the primary intention of an action and its secondary effects should learn to think before they venture to speak.
The story is here
Canon Rosie Harper, vicar of Great Missenden and chaplain to the Bishop of Buckingham, said she supports Lord Falconer's Assisted Dying Bill which receives its second reading in the House of Lords on July 18.Anima naturaliter pagana ...
Her position directly contradicts that of the Church of England, which has argued consistently for no change in the law.
Canon Harper was one of three faith leaders backing the Bill during a debate on the issue hosted by Interfaith Leaders for Dignity in Dying in Westminster, London yesterday.
She described the assisted death of her uncle with Dignitas in Switzerland. "My uncle had a beautiful death, with his family around him - good music, good wine, and a pain-free end. The days that would have followed as he struggled through the end stage of a brain tumour would have been terrible. He had no choice about dying. He did have choice about the manner of his death. That's all this bill is offering."
She said she could not believe in a God who would require "the most extreme suffering" simply in order to shore up "her" sovereignty.
"Nor do I believe that holding on to life at all costs is the uncontested goal of humanity. The crucifixion itself demonstrates that there are higher goals than the preservation of one's life. John 15.3: There is no greater love than to lay down one's life for one's friends."
She argued that a God who offered "freedom of will" would not insist on "extreme suffering" at the end of life when there was a different, better way. Addressing the arguments against, she continued: "First there is the contention that pain can always be controlled. We know that simply is not the case. Anyway - in what way is there value in a person being technically still alive if they are sedated to the point of oblivion?
"Secondly, what this bill proposes is infinitely more honourable than what routinely happens now when a dying person is gradually and cruelly starved to death.
She also said in countries where it is already legal, such as Switzerland, "grannies are not being bumped off, and both old people's homes and hospice care is of a far better standard than anything we offer over here."
The bill would be for a small number of people but offer comfort for a larger number of people. "It is loving, kind and honourable, all good Christian and indeed human values."
Speaking also to Christian Today, she said: "I support Falconer's bill really out of the depths of my faith. I think it comes down to what sort of God you believe in. I believe in a God who is compassionate and who essentially offers us free will."
The 'new religion'- fascistic, fallacious and functionalist- is among us and spreading its seductive message of a tasteful 'designer death' (presumably accompanied by canapés from Fortnum and Mason for those present) to save us from the sheer messiness of human life and, perhaps, sheltering us from the uncomfortable truth of the Incarnation itself - not that we are unfashionable enough still to believe in that .
These are the values of a suburban anteroom of hell ...