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Bishops and Politicians in the Delivery Room

“There are some situations where the mother may in fact die along with her child. But—and this is the Catholic perspective—you can’t do evil to bring about good. The end does not justify the means.”[1]

These are the chilling words of Rev. John Ehrich, who served as the medical ethics director for the Diocese of Phoenix. He was defending Phoenix Bishop Thomas Olmsted’s decision to discipline a hospital administrator (and nun) who gave permission for a life-saving abortion in 2009.

A group of scholars and activists has been working for decades to expose how Catholic hospitals endanger their patients by withholding reproductive health care when it conflicts with Catholic principles... Sociologist Lori Freeman's brilliant new book, Bishops and Bodies: Reproductive Care in American Catholic Hospitals, has arrived at a moment when we should all finally be listening.

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