Calx Mariae issue 16
3 March 2022
The Spring 2022 issue of Voice of the Family’s quarterly magazine, Calx Mariae (Heel of Mary), focuses on the theme The Church and medicine. The events of recent years have highlighted two major misconceptions about modern medicine: firstly, in over-estimating the efficacy of human solutions, and secondly, in underestimating its role in the salvific mission of the Church. History shows that abandoning the Creator leads to a loss of respect for His creatures (see p. 7). The late Prof Jérôme Lejeune, who features prominently in this issue of Calx Mariae, knew this. Medicine, he believed, could be summed up as “hatred of the disease and love of the disabled”. “If we change those terms of reference,” he argued, “if we begin to fight on the same side as the disease, then eliminating the patient in order to eradicate the disease is exactly the abortion of medicine” (see p. 28).
The enemy of the human race profits greatly from sickness and death to sow hopelessness and, where he can, despair. Exploiting our natural aversion to physical suffering, he argues that it is better to kill or be killed than to suffer – perverting charity, compassion and mercy with a growing catalogue of crimes against human life, intended to spread contempt for its Author. He would have us believe that the Passion and death of Our Lord, which reopened the gates of heaven, is without value and irrelevant to our own suffering, which we must fight and eradicate.
The earliest known catechism, the Didache says: “There are two ways, one of life and one of death; but a great difference between the two ways.” The choice of which way to follow is placed before everyone – and, in particular, before every Christian. The demons, however, would convince us that the way of life is impossible, while the way of death is merciful; without further difference between the two. Nowhere is this demonic deception more destructive today than in the field of medicine.
Just as Our Lord was betrayed by one of those closest to him, so human victims today are betrayed by their own: the generation which permitted itself to kill its children, sees its children’s generation take the same license in regard to their parents; thus the bonds of love are broken in the family and the sanctuary of life is threatened from within.
Despite this, the strongest bond of natural love remains between a mother and her child. In this issue, we hear about two mothers who bear witness to this love through their self-sacrifice but in very different ways. See the story of Gianna Beretta Molla (p. 51) and our interview with Dame Colleen Bayer (p. 43).
The great season of Lent reminds us of the total and eternal defeat of the devil, by means of his most prized assets: suffering and death. There is nothing we should cherish more than the Cross – in our own lives just as in the communion of faith – because it is the way of everlasting life, shown to us by Jesus and Mary.