FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

Director of Education, National Catholic Bioethics Center, Philadelphia
September 18, 2020  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

Several popular myths about COVID-19 vaccines have been gaining traction on social media in recent months, particularly in regard to messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines being developed by Moderna, Sanofi, Pfizer and a handful of other companies. I would like to consider five of these myths:


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August 21, 2020  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

Between 1932 and 1972, a series of highly unethical medical studies were performed on a group of 400 African-Americans by doctors from the U.S. Public Health Service.


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August 7, 2020  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

To sanction or encourage certain wrongful actions, it is often necessary to manipulate language. The plain meaning of words can get in the way of convincing others they should tolerate or participate in wrongdoing, or otherwise embrace situations of evil or injustice. Verbal obfuscation becomes necessary to veil evident moral truths.


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June 19, 2020  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

The Covid-19 pandemic has left many of us with a great deal of uncertainty: uncertainty about how contagious the virus is and about the best way to treat it; uncertainty about how long our personal immunity will last after we get infected and whether a vaccine will ever be developed; uncertainty about the future of the economy and whether jobs will still be there for the 40 million newly unemployed; uncertainty about how long the public quarantines should continue; uncertainty about what will happen to ourselves, our businesses, our families and our friends.


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May 15, 2020  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

Creating a new vaccine and bringing it to market typically requires more than a decade of research and clinical testing. Many companies and research groups are working overtime to shorten this timeline dramatically in the wake of the Covid- 19 pandemic.


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March 6, 2020  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

In a recent essay in the Wall Street Journal, Kimberly Cutter chronicled the death of her father by suicide. As he struggled with rapidly progressing prostate cancer, he lost more than 30 pounds, becoming gaunt and emaciated. Back pain and nausea forced him to spend much of his time in bed.


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February 21, 2020  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

When Mother Teresa visited New Bedford, Massachusetts in June 1995, she told those of us gathered at St. Lawrence Martyr Church: “Abortion is the greatest evil of today.” Never one to mince words, Mother Teresa’s courage, truthfulness and charity were palpable. Parents today need similar fortitude, honesty and love to be able to discuss the hard topic of unplanned pregnancies and abortion with their children.


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November 1, 2019  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

Because suffering almost always imposes itself on us during life, and especially at the end of life, it can be helpful to reflect on the need to accept some personal suffering as we die, even as we recognize the importance of palliative steps and other comfort measures.


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August 2, 2019  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

Those of us who have grown up within the womb of a democratic society may not always recognize how radical the idea behind such a society actually is, nor how fragile its structure can be in the face of strident claims regarding individual freedoms. Legalization of abortion, to focus on one of the most strident claims, corrodes the very pillars of our democratic society.


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July 5, 2019  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

Children require extensive support and protection to meet their physical, emotional, and spiritual needs. They are uniquely dependent on their parents because they are particularly vulnerable. Often they are unable to speak on their own behalf or effectively defend themselves from various forms of exploitation.


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June 7, 2019  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK
Most people recognize the importance of obtaining consent before retrieving organs from the bodies of deceased persons. They also understand the necessity of showing respect for those bodily remains following death.
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May 17, 2019  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK
A few years back, I gave a talk entitled “Thinking Through the Transgender Question” at a local parish. In the audience were several individuals supporting the transgender movement. During the question-and-answer session, one of them, a young woman, raised this difficulty: “If someone wants to transition, how does that hurt anybody else? If my friend wants to be transgender, how would that harm any of us?”
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April 5, 2019  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK
I remember a conversation I had with a married Catholic couple a few years ago. They were feeling lost and desperate over their inability to conceive a child. They were casting about for options. They understood there were moral concerns with doing in vitro fertilization (IVF), though they weren’t sure about the specifics, so they asked: “Would it be OK for us to do IVF as long as we don’t make any extra embryos and we’re careful to implant all the ones we make?”
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March 1, 2019  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK
Whenever we make small exceptions to universal moral rules, we shouldn’t be surprised that the rules themselves can be quickly undermined. Establishing an “exception” in one case makes people think they’re due an exemption for their case as well. Certain norms of moral behavior, however, do not admit of any exceptions, and we risk undermining morality altogether if we don’t recognize them. Moral norms governing the protection of human life are one such example.
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February 14, 2019  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK
During the course of pregnancy, receiving an adverse prenatal diagnosis can be a tremendously jolting experience for parents. In severe cases, physicians may tell them that their unborn child has a condition that is “incompatible with life.”
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