FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK

Director of Education, National Catholic Bioethics Center, Philadelphia
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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December 7, 2018  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK
Americans have long been disturbed by the fraud and waste that often surrounds the federal government’s use of their tax dollars. They now have further reason to be up in arms because of the way those tax dollars support the practice of abortion, even though such support, technically speaking, remains illegal.
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November 2, 2018  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK
Sexual Orientation Change Efforts (SOCE) rely on professional therapy and counseling, often in a religious context, to assist those struggling with unwanted homosexual inclinations who would like to diminish their same-sex attractions and grow in their ability to abstain from same-sex behaviors. Many proponents of same-sex lifestyles argue that Sexual Orientation Change Efforts are not only not effective, but also are harmful and unscientific, going so far as to advocate for legislation that would restrict a practitioner’s ability to offer SOCE. A sweeping bill recently tabled in California, for example, would have labeled any sexual orientation therapies offered for a fee as “consumer fraud.” Are such laws sensible or reprehensible? What do scientific studies indicate about attempts to change sexual orientation?
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October 5, 2018  |  By FATHER TAD PACHOLCZYK
Almost two million Americans are now addicted to opioids. The National Institute on Drug Abuse notes that more than 100 people die each day in the U.S. from opioid overdoses. This unprecedented level of abuse — which involves not only heroin, but also prescription pain relievers such as OxyContin, Percocet, morphine, codeine, and fentanyl — has become a national crisis. Reportedly, about 80 percent of heroin addicts first misused prescription opioids. Yet for many patients, no pain-relieving options more effective than opioids exist. Figuring out how to use these powerful pharmacological agents in an appropriate and ethical manner is urgent and imperative.
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