In Vitro Fertilization: A Pastoral Taboo?
Scholars have shown how the moral limitations and caveats that many religions pose against new assisted reproductive technologies have hindered women's medical help-seeking. In the context of reproductive medicine, Catholics, compared to other religious groups (Evans and Hudson 2007), are more likely to disapprove in vitro fertilization (IVF). This article explores, through a qualitative empirical study, the absence of dialogue between Catholic congregants and their priests about IVF. On the one hand, parishioners primarily spoke about infertility issues in a very general manner, but would barely enter into any details. On the other hand, members of the clergy wouldn't mention IVF's prohibition unless they were specifically questioned on that matter. This article proposes explanations for this silence.
Nicolas, P. (2021). In Vitro Fertilization: A Pastoral Taboo?. Journal of Religion and Health, 60 (3), 1694-1712. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10943-020-01161-x