Medicine is a genuine ministry. All one need to do is to read the Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles to know that the ministry of Jesus and his early disciples was a ministry of preaching and healing. Similarly, St. Francis of Assisi and the early friars preached in city squares and cared for […]
Receiving the Gift of Friendship: Profound Disability, Theological Anthropology, and Ethics
Hans S. Reinders Does what we are capable of doing define us as human beings? If this basic anthropological assumption is true, where can that leave those with intellectual disabilities, unable to accomplish the things that we propose give us our very humanity? Hans Reinders here makes an unusual claim about unusual people: those who […]
Lament for a Son
Nicholas Wolterstorff Wolterstorff, a well-known Christian philosopher, lost his 25-year-old son to a mountain climbing accident. His reflections in the wake of that tragedy are at times deeply personal, but always he expresses a prayerful anguish with which most bereaved parents will identify. Above all he refuses to turn from the “demonic awfulness” of death […]
Should We Live Forever: The Ethical Ambiguities of Aging
Gilbert Meilaender In Should We Live Forever? Christian ethicist Gilbert Meilaender puzzles over the implications of the medical advances that have lengthened the human life span, wrestling with what this quest for living longer means for our conception of living well and completely. As he points out in his introduction, “That we often desire, even […]
Bioethics: A Primer for Christians
Gilbert Meilaender Now in its third edition, Meilaender’s Bioethics covers abortion, assisted reproduction, genetic research, suicide and euthanasia, human experimentation and much more in language that is theologically informed, straightforward, and clear. A perfect resource for those investigating these issues. From the Publisher. Get this book.
The Christian Art of Dying: Learning from Jesus
Allen Verhey A renowned ethicist who himself faced death during a life-threatening illness, Allen Verhey sets out to recapture dying from the medical world. Seeking to counter the medicalization of death that is so prevalent today, Verhey revisits the fifteenth-century Ars Moriendi, an illustrated spiritual self-help manual on “the art of dying.” Finding much wisdom […]
Safe Passage: A Global Spiritual Sourcebook for Care at the End of Life
Mark Lazenby, Ruth McCorkle, and Daniel Sulmasy, eds. The study and practice of end-of-life care has seen an increasing understanding of the need for care that integrates clinical, psychosocial, spiritual, cultural, and ethical expertise. Yet, no one existing volume pulls together perspectives from a diverse array of religions with ethical dilemmas and clinical problems in […]
Dying in the Twenty-First Century: Toward a New Ethical Framework for the Art of Dying Well
Lydia Dugdale Most of us are generally ill-equipped for dying. Today, we neither see death nor prepare for it. But this has not always been the case. In the early fifteenth century, the Roman Catholic Church published the Ars moriendi texts, which established prayers and practices for an art of dying. In the twenty-first century, […]
Living Well and Dying Faithfully: Christian Practices for End-Of-Life Care
John Swinton and Richard Payne, eds. Living Well and Dying Faithfully explores how Christian practices — love, prayer, lament, compassion, and so on — can contribute to the process of dying well. Working on the premise that one dies the way one lives, the book is unique in its constructive dialogue between theology and medicine […]
At the Beginning of Life: Dilemmas in Theological Bioethics
Edwin C. Hui A lucid, nuanced assessment of the theological implications of beginning-of-life ethical challenges by a Chinese-Canadian physician-turned-theologian. From Ed Get this book.
The New Medicine: Life and Death After Hippocrates
Nigel M. de S. Cameron. “The argument of the book is, in short, that the incipient collapse of the Hippocratic tradition is leading to the development of a ‘new medicine’ in which the moral vision that has driven medicine is being displaced… The life issues encompass both the old questions of abortion and euthanasia – […]
The Brothers Grimm This fascinating story tells the tale of a physician whose godfather is Death and the resulting effects on his career. It is a useful story to spark thoughts about the limits of medicine and its relationship with death. From Ed. A poor man had twelve children and had to work day and night in order just […]
Fidelity: Five Stories
Wendell Berry The title short story, Fidelity, is a “must read” for health care workers. Here Berry portrays the argument of his essay, “Health is Membership” in compelling, fictional form, highlighting the hazards and limitations of technologized “McMedicine.” From Ed. Get this book.
The Rebirth of the Clinic: An Introduction to Spirituality in Health Care
Daniel Sulmasy In this careful examination of the relation between spirituality and health care, Sulmasy explores the nature of illness and healing, describes empirical research on the effects of spirituality on health, and devotes special attention to the care of people at the end of life. From the publisher. Get this book.
The Art of Dying: Living Fully into the Life to Come
How now shall we die? Death will come to us all, but most of us live our lives as if death does not exist. People are living longer than ever, and medicine has made dying more complicated, more drawn out and more removed from the experience of most people. Death is partitioned off to hospital […]
Medicine as Ministry
Margaret E. Mohrmann Mohrmann is a pediatrician and philosopher at the University of Virginia who thoughtfully examines how Christians should approach medicine. Well worth the price of the book for her chapter on the idolatry of health and medicine. From Ed. Get this book.
Making Sense Out Of Suffering
This book is for anyone who has ever wept and wondered, “Why?” Peter Kreeft observes that our world is full of billions of normal lives that have been touched by apparently pointless and random suffering. This account of a real and honest personal quest is both engaging and convincing. Written from a deep well of […]
A Window to Heaven: When Children See Life in Death
Dianne Komp Reflections from a Yale pediatric oncologist and about lessons she learned from her patients. From Ed. Get this book.
The Hauerwas Reader
Stanley Hauerwas is one of the most widely read and oft-cited theologians writing today. A prolific lecturer and author, he has been at the forefront of key developments in contemporary theology, ranging from narrative theology to the “recovery of virtue.” Yet despite his prominence and the esteem reserved for his thought, his work has never […]
The Gift of Pain
Paul Brand and Phillip Yancey In this book first published as Pain: The Gift Nobody Wants, Brand and Yancey describe how pain can be one of God’s great gifts to us. Physician Paul Brand draws on his decades of ministry to patients with leprosy to probe the mystery of pain and reveals its importance. The Gift of Pain […]
The Anticipatory Corpse: Medicine, Power, and the Care of the Dying
Jeffrey Bishop Bishop, a philosopher, ethicist, and physician, argues that something has gone sadly amiss in the care of the dying by contemporary medicine and in our social and political views of death, as shaped by our scientific successes and ongoing debates about euthanasia and the “right to die”–or to live… He argues that a […]
Abortion, Theologically Understood
©1991 Taskforce of United Methodists on Abortion and Sexuality, Inc. Downloaded Nov 26, 2012 from lifewatch.org/abortion.html Foreword Serious theological and moral reflection during a session of a United Methodist annual conference is about as rare as a March snow at Cape Hatteras. The word is rare, not impossible. During the l990 meeting of the North […]
Brain Surgery with Words
Ray Barfield is a pediatric oncologist at Duke University interested in the intersection of medicine, philosophy and theology. Most recently his medical research has focused on immune therapies for childhood cancer and on improving of the quality of life for children with severe or fatal diseases. His work in philosophy focuses on ethics and the […]
A Good Man Is Hard To Find
Flannery O’Connor This is a somewhat disturbing short story by Flannery O’Connor, an American literary stalwart who also happens to be a devout Catholic. On the surface, it has nothing to do with faith and medicine. On a second look, it has everything to do with faith and medicine. Why do so many people spend […]