Now that I have received a response from Bishop James Newcome, Bishop of Carlisle, I think I ought to share what I wrote to him, as well as his reply. This was my email to him:
Further to this article http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3449141/Giving-blood-donating-organs-Christian-s-duty-says-bishop.html and with great respect I must write to you with regard to your recent comments on organ donation.
Sadly the public are severely misinformed about organ donation, and I am including with this email some links for you to peruse. I believe once you read these, and pray about this you will see that this is NOT what God wants us to do with our bodies, and that we must resist organ donation as we resist abortion. Any surgical procedure which results in the death of the patient is not a Godly thing that He would approve of. It is indeed a sacrificial offering, but not one we should be encouraging anyone to agree to.
“BRAIN DEATH”- The new “Pretend Death” is not True Death
Prior to 1968 a person was declared dead only after their breathing and heart stopped for a determinate period of time. The current terminology “Brain Death” was unheard of.
When surgeons realized they had the capability of taking organs from one seemingly “close to death” person and implanting them into another person to keep the recipient alive longer, a “Pandora’s Box” was opened.
In the beginning, through trial and error, they discovered it was not possible to perform this “miraculous” surgery with organs taken from someone truly dead–even if the donor was without circulation for merely a few minutes – because organ damage occurs within a very brief time after circulation stops.
To justify their experimental procedures it was necessary for them to come up with a solution which is how the term “Brain Death” was contrived. To verify the determination of “brain death” they developed more than 30 different sets of criteria to declare “brain death” (DBD) published from 1968–1978. Every new set was less strict than previous sets–now there are many more. Dear reader, those criteria are flawed.
Recently we read and heard about the young man in Oklahoma declared “brain dead,” but his cousin, a nurse, recognized response during the 4 hours of preparation to take his organs. The transplant was not done. This young man is living proof that “brain death” is not true death. If his organs had been taken, he would have been killed.
He even attested to being able to hear and understand what was taking place but was unable to speak in his own defense as a result of his brain injury. Most frighteningly, he could not cry out “STOP!” when it came to the harvesting of his own organs. IMPORTANT: This is not an isolated case
More recently, when there is a desire to get organs while the donor still has obvious brain activity, a Do-Not-Resuscitate (DNR) is obtained to stop the life support. When the donor is pulseless for as short as 75 seconds (but the heart is still beating) the organs are taken – this is called Donation by Cardiac Death (DCD). When a heart is taken for transplantation, after about 1 hour of operating, while the heart is beating and blood pressure and circulation are normal, the heart is stopped by the transplant surgeon. Then the surgeon lifts the heart from the donor’s chest.
“An authoritative view is that “Science cannot address the problem of consciousness” – though some Nobel Laureates have tried. Unless and until that changes, there can be no question of considering a brain dead while blood continues to circulate through it. How long, after the truly final cessation of all such blood flow, one must wait before deciding that a brain is dead is the question which requires scientific investigation for the provision of a reliable answer. It is, of course, a complex question requiring the consideration of variables such as prior nutrition, temperature, etc. My personal clinical observations suggest that (at ordinary temperatures) that period is greatly in excess of the waiting times currently in use for ‘DCD’ organ procurement. [I once resuscitated a neurologist after some 40 minutes of cardiac arrest – during which there was some ham-fisted chest compression/ventilation – and he returned to active consultant practice].”
Quote from here: http://www.organfacts.net/notdead/gloria-cruz/
“Tani begged doctors not to switch off her life support. A doctor, a social worker and a “patient advocate” rang him and again urged him to remove the ventilator and let her die. After two weeks Tani finally gave in to their demands but insisted that a breathing tube be inserted into Gloria’s mouth so that she could continue breathing on her own.
Just three days later, Gloria revived, awoke from her coma and was getting around Royal Darwin Hospital in a wheelchair. This was two months after doctors declared her dead. A doctor admitted that his prognosis was “wrong”. He reports that she is alert, mobile and on her way to recovery (May 2011).
Life Site News reports that an increasing number of experts have begun calling into question the “brain death” criteria for determining death. They argue that “brain death” is an arbitrary set of criteria developed largely to ensure the usability of organs harvested from such patients, as well as to decrease the medical costs involved in keeping “brain dead” patients alive on life support.”
“It says ‘I want to help others to live after my death.’ What it doesn’t say is that you will be kept alive until your organs have been removed, even though you will be given no anaesthetic, and they may say you are ‘brain-dead’ but that definition has only been in existence since organ donation first became feasible.”
There is an excellent video at the end of that post which you may find extremely helpful.
I hope you will prayerfully consider what I have sent you, and that you will share your comments with me when you have read and watched the information provided. I believe I am one of very few who are trying to reach out with this important message, in order to prevent suffering and ultimately the deaths of those who cannot defend themselves. It is they who the church should be protecting.
God Bless you
Today I received this response from Bishop Newcome:
Dear Ms xxxxxxx
Thank you for your e-mail and attachments about organ donation which I have read carefully. I have to say that I (and all the doctors I know) remain satisfied with ‘brain death’ as an adequate definition of being dead. However, I am most grateful to you for your very proper concern, and for taking the trouble to write as you did. Incidentally, my further thoughts on this are contained in a little book (published recently) called ‘At the End of the Day’.
With best wishes
Bishop of Carlisle
I’m sad to say that I cannot see how this man is a man of God when the thought of someone being alive while their organs are removed does not move him to reverse his position. I publish his response because he is a public figure and prominent in the church in endorsing this stance. Christians rely on their leaders, and it is up to those of us who know to hold them to account for their huamn failings.
Doctors may well be satisfied with the current definition of brain death, but many anaesthetists are not – they are aware something is wrong, and I will continue to work to spread the message that organ donation does NOT happen after death.
I have sent the following brief response:
Thank you for your reply – I would urge you to continue to seek God on this issue. God does not want us used as spare parts, and He certainly does not want us to be lied to to achieve it. Those on the organ donor register have NOT given informed consent to have their vital organs removed while still alive.
That is both a LEGAL crime, surely, and certainly a moral one.
Please take a moment to pray for Bishop James Newcome – and ask God to reveal His truth to him.
God Bless you