The Sanctity of Human Life (2011)

Holy Innocents

“We respect embryos from the moment we perceive or even suspect that they possess human identity, not because they are something great that we adequately know, but because they conceal a mystery, which will always remain unknown.”  (Metropolitan Nikolaos, Chairman of the Bioethics Committee of the Holy Synod of the Church of Greece)

St. John Chrysostom once commented on the pagan practice of sacrificing children to appease a god.   He attributed such a practice to the “gods” these people worshipped, which he says are nothing more than demons.  Demons who convince people they are gods, are nothing but deceptive liars, and thus create false religion.  People who come to believe these demons demand the sacrifice of children have thus rejected the life-giving God.  He says such people and such religion bring destruction upon society itself.

“They persuaded people who should have mourned the slaughter of these victims to act as sponsorsof the deplorable carnage.  Lest human statutes only be transgressed, they also utterly uprooted the very laws of nature; which they frenzied against herself by introducing into human life the most atrocious murder of all.  Henceforth everyone feared their parents more than any enemy.  Instead of placing special confidence in them, they suspected to the spectacle of this universe through their parents.  These destructive spirits sought to deprive them of this gift by making parents who had fostered their life the cause of their death, as if wishing to show that they have profited not at all from the goodness of God: they will not require other executioners than their parents.”  (St. John Chrysostom, APOLOGIST, p 78)

Christ blessing children

The deliberate act of a parent to kill their own child destroys not just a life, but society itself.  Parents willing to be the executioners of their own children is a sign that something is wrong in a nation: that life is not valued, and that killing is an unacceptable way to eliminate those who are unwanted, unloved, or inconvenient including any that have done nothing deserving of execution.