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Archive for Thursday, September 27, 2007

Vatican rejects charges on John Paul II

September 27, 2007

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— A doctor alleged Wednesday that Pope John Paul II violated Catholic teaching against euthanasia by refusing medical care that would have kept him alive longer - a charge dismissed by Vatican officials.

In an article in the Italian journal Micromega, Dr. Lina Pavanelli, an anesthesiologist, questioned why John Paul was only outfitted with a nasal feeding tube on March 30, 2005, three days before he died. She said he clearly was in need of artificial nutrition well before then.

John Paul was rushed to Rome's Gemelli Polyclinic hospital two times in February 2005 with breathing crises related to his Parkinson's disease; he was released for the last time March 13. He died in his Vatican apartment on April 2, from what the Vatican said was septic shock and cardiocirculatory collapse.

The Vatican announced March 30 that John Paul had been outfitted with a nasal feeding straw to improve his nutrition so he could recover strength.

However, Vatican officials said Wednesday that the tube had actually been inserted well before March 30 but that the procedure was only announced on that date - casting doubt on Pavanelli's core argument.

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