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Low-spirited Larry wrote:

Hi, guys —

I have been on dialysis since March of this year (for 9 months). I have Renal Kidney Failure; that's why I am on dialysis. It has changed my life so much.

Now, I feel I'm losing my will to live like this. I have no appetite, I want to sleep all day but force myself to get up.

  • Does the Church consider it suicide if I decided to stop dialysis?

Thank-you,

Larry

  { Does the Church consider it suicide if I choose to stop dialysis? }

Bob replied:

Larry,

There is a fundamental responsibility to take care of ourselves and sustain life with what is considered ordinary care; there is not a responsibility to maintain extraordinary care indefinitely.

The lines may be blurry, but generally speaking extraordinary care is anything that artificially prolongs and forestalls what would be an otherwise natural death.

Since technological advancements proceed at an incredible pace, what is extraordinary one day, is ordinary the next, thus, dialysis is generally considered ordinary care these days, as it has been a standard of care for quite some time.

If you add to that, your desire to just end things, your situation does look more like a willful death (suicide), than just wanting to die naturally. This is a bit of despair which is really causing some depression. Don't give in to that.

What you must do is find the meaning in your suffering now and let God take you when He knows it is time. I would offer up each and every moment for the salvation of souls, those you know, and don't know, especially for those who need extra strength.

Unite yourself to Jesus on the Cross. He can bring meaning to your pain when you are united to His Passion at Calvary. These are not just pious words, but rather the way to peace and joy.

Pray the Rosary every day and really meditate on the mysteries and your world will begin to change, despite the pain. This is happening to you because God knows you can be a blessing to others and He will give you the grace to do it. He is literally calling you to be a saint.

God bless you and I will pray for you right now as I pray my Rosary.

Peace,

Bob Kirby

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