Dying well: A challenge to Christian compassion

The fear of enduring unceasing pain, of being trapped by medical machines, of losing bodily integrity and personal dignity and of being an emotional and financial drain on one's loved ones--such fear lends strength to the movement for euthanasia and for physician-assisted suicide (PAS). Support for euthanasia/PAS has been spurred on by the Hemlock Society, founded by former journalist Derek Humphry and based in Eugene, Oregon. The society's political arm helped draft initiatives aimed at legalizing euthanasia. Ballot initiatives in the states of Washington (1991) and California (1992) were both narrowly defeated by a 54 to 46 percent margin. The defeat of these "euthanasia" initiatives shifted the focus to "assisted suicide," which gives more control to the dying patient.


This article is available to subscribers only. Please subscribe for full access—subscriptions begin at $2.95. Already have an online account? Log in now. Already a print subscriber? Create an online account for no additional cost.

This article is available to subscribers only.

To post a comment, log inregister, or use the Facebook comment box.