Bishop says Christianity should not be used to oppose assisted dying

A Victorian Anglican bishop, Bishop Andrew Curnow, has delivered a startling rebuke to those demanding he oppose marriage equality and assisted dying. Bendigo Bishop Curnow argued Australia was no longer a Christian nation and using Christianity as grounds to oppose equal marriage and voluntary assisted dying laws made him “very uncomfortable”. “This does not mean that the church cannot contribute to the debate on public issues or that it cannot make a meaningful contribution to the life of the nation and state, ….But our contribution has to take account of the diversity of our society” Bishop Curnow said.

According to the Bendigo diocese website, Bishop Andrew Curnow was consecrated a bishop in St Paul’s Cathedral, Melbourne on 11 June 1994 and has announced his intention to retire from the office of Bishop of Bendigo effective 2 December 2017 – click for more information about the Bishop

Click for article in The Age 21 September 2017 “No ‘Armageddon’ if euthanasia, same-sex marriage legalised says Victorian Bishop”

The previous day, the Radio National Religion and Ethics Report broadcast at interview by Andrew West with Dr Robyn J. Whitaker, biblical scholar, historian and currently a Lecturer at Trinity College Theological School. They discussed the big ethical questions the MPs will face with the Voluntary Assisted Dying Bills in Victoria and NSW this week.

Dr Whitaker acknowledges that for good theological reasons, Christians can arrive on either side of the voluntary assisted dying debate. She says there is a strongly-held Christian value about the sancity of life, but there is also a strong theological belief that we don’t make life an end-goal or something to preserve at all costs.  Click for Religion and Ethics Report on ‘Victoria and New South Wales debate euthanasia bills’ (7.51 mins).