From Judy McKinlay and Rev Dr Ross Kingham
A Bill is expected to come to the NSW Parliament this year, following those in other Australian states, to make Voluntary Assisted Dying (VAD) possible. VAD is defined as the choice by a patient in specific circumstances to take a medication with the intention of ending his or her life. How do we as individuals, community and church, respond to this possibility?
In the June 5th session of Synod 2021, participants were asked to read a background paper, Voluntary Assisted Dying, provided by a Synod Working Group and available here. It includes a selection of reflections from a range of individuals to encourage others to write their own (up to an A4 page) and to engage with this important issue. The discussion question for synod was “What is the one, central faith/life issue that arose for you as you wrote your reflection?”
All members of our Church are invited now to read Voluntary Assisted Dying and consider three key questions: why and how does this issue matter for those seeking to live a Christian life; what sort of principles might the church wish to see in the legislation; and how could Uniting or other church agencies offer support to people who make a decision to end their life?
The one page reflection template is available here, and we strongly encourage you to think, pray, reflect and respond.
If the paper, your reflections, or the general matter of Voluntary Assisted Dying triggers personal concerns for you, please feel free to contact Chaplains: Pastor Heather Potter, 0419498866; email@example.com or Rev. Andrew Mead, (02)62443768; firstname.lastname@example.org
If you would like to share your reflections with others in our Presbytery, please contact any of our Staff and Office Bearers, or forward them to Amy Junor (email@example.com) for publication in our newsletter.