Diocese bans Catholic school trips to center where students could ‘handle’ embryonic stem cells
BY BEN JOHNSON
MADISON, WI, September 12, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Catholic schoolchildren will no longer take field trips to a center that conducts embryonic stem cell research and gives students the opportunity to handle the aborted cells, the Diocese of Madison has announced in a letter.
Instead Catholic schools should find “morally acceptable means of meeting the educational objectives,” Michael Lancaster, the diocesan superintendent of Catholic schools, wrote in a letter released last Thursday.
The new policy affects visits to the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, on the campus of the University of Wisconsin at Madison. James Thomson, director of regenerative biology at the center’s Morgridge Institute for Research, is a pioneer in embryonic stem cell research.
After a series of complaints from parents and priests, the diocese learned that WID offers what one observer describes as a “hands-on stem cell workshop,” taken part in by 200 Wisconsin schoolchildren.
“There is the possibility participants in this workshop may handle embryonic stem cells, which would clearly violate Catholic doctrine and teaching,” Lancaster wrote.
Embryonic stem cell research (ESCR), which requires the abortion of unborn children, is condemned by the Catholic Church as inherently unethical.