Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

If you are a good Catholic can you help me out about the life of a mother?

I am a cradle Catholic, Mass every Sunday, First Communion in 2nd grade confirmation in 8th, 12 years of Catholic school-the whole 9 yards. I still go to Mass on Sundays my kids are being raised Catholic ect. Now I am may not be the best Catholic in the world, but I would like to think I learned one or two things in my day. I always thought a mother could under go a hysterectomy or other types of procedures as long as the baby is not touch. Reading on cafemom (yes I know cafemom isn't the best information site) I hear Catholics and people who claim to have been Catholic say the mother cannot do anything that would stop the pregnancy. I remember a teacher telling us how she found out she had cancer and was pregnant in the same day and she was allowed to have a hysterectomy. Anyone know the official Church stand on this?


Asked by Anonymous at 9:04 PM on Jun. 13, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

This question is closed.
Answers (2)
  • A Catholic cannot have a direct abortion - meaning that the intention of the procedure cannot be to kill the child. If the mother undergoes a treatment where the side effect is the death of the baby as unfortunate as that is - it's something that would not go against Church teaching.

    So if a pregnant mother discovers she has cancer she can choose to receive chemo, radiation or other therapy even if that therapy may result in the death of the baby. She cannot have a direct abortion and then go through the treatment - because the direct abortion is morally wrong.

    The life of the mother is equally as valuable as the life of the baby and she must receive appropriate treatment. If the only available remedy saves the life of the mother but, while not a direct abortion, brings about the unintended effect of the death of the child that is the couples choice based on their conscience.

    Answer by eringobrough at 9:49 PM on Jun. 13, 2009

  • A reference for you from the Catholics United for Faith website:

    Another example arises in the treatment of uterine (endometrial) cancer during a pregnancy. The common treatments of uterine cancer are primarily hysterectomy (surgical removal of the uterus) and sometimes chemotherapy or radiation therapy. Again, taking the life of the baby is not intended, but a hysterectomy does mean the removal of the womb and the death of the child. Yet, if a hysterectomy must be performed to save the life of the mother, the Church would deem the procedure morally licit.


    Answer by eringobrough at 10:43 PM on Jun. 13, 2009