Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Vincent Lambert's Life upheld by Courts in France - Vatican issues statement in Support - Full Text

Life News reports that in 2008, Lambert was in a motorcycle accident that caused brain damage. In 2015, his wife petitioned the court to have all treatment and care ceased including food and water. His parents urged that their son be transferred to a rehabilitation center. Though his parents are fighting for his life, his wife and some other family members believe he has no quality of life and should be taken off food and water. 

Before the newest court ruling, which upholds Lambert's life, the process of starving Lambert to death began: Doctors started switching off his life support at the Sebastopol Hospital in the northern French city of Reims following a final judicial ruling to halt nutrition and hydration. Without these, he could die “within days”, said medical sources.

Pope Francis on Monday also said that “those who live with severe illness” should have life protected until “its natural end”. “We pray for those who live with severe illness,” the pope tweeted. “Let us always safeguard life, God’s gift, from its beginning until its natural end. Let us not give in to a throwaway culture.”

 Macron’s office is currently tabulating calls for or against saving Vincent. Call +33142928100 and say “Je téléphone pour sauver la vie de Vincent Lambert.”

 Last spring, Pope Francis also spoke out on behalf of Lambert and Alfie Evans, a British toddler who died after a hospital removed his life support against his parents’ wishes. “I entrust to your prayer persons such as Vincent Lambert in France, little Alfie Evans in England, and others in several countries who live, sometimes for a long time, in a state of grave illness, assisted medically for their primary needs,” the pope said.

The Guardian reported:
The court ordered authorities “to take all measures” to keep alive Vincent Lambert, a 42-year-old quadriplegic with severe brain damage who has been in a vegetative state for a decade, pending a review by the UN committee on the rights of persons with disabilities.

Lambert’s mother, Viviane, 73, hailed the ruling as “a very big victory” in her struggle to maintain vital medical care for her son.

On Monday, his mother told AFP: “They were starting to eliminate Vincent! This is a very big victory. They are going to restore nutrition and give him drink. For once I am proud of the courts.”
Edited from Life News

The Vatican Issued a declaration Full Text:

In full agreement with the affirmations of the Archbishop of Reims, H.E. Msgr. Éric de Moulins-Beaufort, and the auxiliary bishop, H.E. Msgr. Bruno Feillet, in relation to the sad case of Mr. Vincent Lambert, we wish to reiterate the grave violation of the dignity of the person that the withdrawal of nutrition and hydration would constitute. Indeed, the “vegetative state” is certainly a burdensome pathological state, which however does not in any way compromise the dignity of those people who find themselves in this condition, nor does it compromise their fundamental rights to life and to care, understood as the continuity of basic human assistance.

Nutrition and hydration constitute a form of essential care, always proportionate to life support: to nourish a sick person never constitutes a form of unreasonable therapeutic obstinacy, as long as the person is able to receive nutrition and hydration, provided this does not cause intolerable suffering or prove damaging to the patient.

The suspension of such care represents, rather, a form of abandonment of the patient, based on a pitiless judgment of the quality of life, expression of a throwaway culture that selects the most fragile and helpless people, without recognizing their uniqueness and immense value. The continuity of assistance is an inescapable duty.

We therefore hope that solutions may be found as soon as possible to protect Mr. Lambert’s life. To this end, we assure the prayer of the Holy Father and all the Church.

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