Bishop releases letter against IVF treatments

CHARLESTON — Wheeling-Charleston Diocese Bishop Mark Brennan has issued a letter against IVF services.

This comes as Alabama fertility clinics begin lifting the freeze on IVF after the state’s Republican Gov. Kay Ivey signed a bill into law to protect access to in-vitro fertilization this week.

The Alabama State Supreme Court ruled last month that frozen embryos should be treated as “children.”
Brennan said on Friday’s MetroNews “Talkline” all embryos should be protected.

“If a child is conceived in any manner, we accept them as a true human being,” he said.

Brennan wrote, in part, in his letter: “Even though the embryos that died in the Alabama hospital should never have been conceived by IVF, still they were conceived and should be protected.”

Families suffering from infertility and doctors specializing in IVF have pressured Alabama’s state legislature to do something since the Supreme Court ruling.

The new law in Alabama provides protection to infertility clinics should any frozen embryos be destroyed. Brennan said these services are wrong and unnatural.

“When you replace the normal encounter of a man and a woman to produce a child, that’s an inappropriate use,” Brennan said. “The conception doesn’t take place in the act of the couple. It takes place in a laboratory, in a petri dish.”

Fertility specialists have been using frozen embryos for years to reduce the complications that arise from fresh implants, such as high-risk multiple births in one pregnancy, but Brennan said in his statement IVF goes against natural human interaction.

“IVF looks for a short-term solution but does not recognize the longer-term damage it does by making the embryo an object of medical manipulation rather than a fruit of parental love,” Brennan stated.

Brennan went on to say on “Talkline” all children should be treated the same no matter how they’re conceived.

“The child is not treated any differently because of the manner of conception. If a child is a product of rape, and that’s a terrible thing — rape, but I’ve met people who have been conceived in rapes and we wouldn’t treat the child any different,” he said.