St. André International Institute for Catholic Bioethics
As an academic entity, the Center undertakes all its scholarly and educational activities in a rigorous and critical manner. To that avail, the Center operates in an interdisciplinary manner, being open to the broadest possible array of sources of moral wisdom.
As explicated in its Statutes, when relevant the Center will undertake its activities” from the perspective of Christian faith and the Catholic intellectual tradition, contribute to those perspectives, and promote interreligious dialogue”. Consistent with the expertise and interest within the Center’s team, Catholic bioethics is one of the focus areas of the St. André International Center for Ethics and Integrity. The Center’s activities in this area are coordinated by its Institute for Catholic Bioethics.
Catholic scholars were among the earliest authors in the field of bioethics. Indeed, it can be argued that bioethics – or at least its precursor, that is, medical ethics – originated out of the Catholic spiritual and intellectual tradition. Today, the majority of bioethics scholars no longer associate themselves with this tradition; some even insist that the discipline must be radically secular. We disagree. The St André International Institute for Catholic Bioethics seeks to build forth on the aforementioned tradition. We assist individual care providers, hospitals and other health care facilities who identify as Catholic to ameliorate en enhance their care efforts by mining the vast wisdom encompassed in the Catholic spiritual and intellectual tradition. More generally, we explore that tradition with scholarly rigor to find positive solutions to the many ethical challenges faced by today’s health care professions, care communities, biomedical research teams, public health authorities, ecosystem monitors, climate protection agencies and still others.
EDUCATION / PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT. The Institute’s primary undertaking to realize the aforementioned objectives is by organizing intensive ethics seminars. While the subjects covered in these seminars may vary, they are always structured to maximize a joint exploration of the Catholic spiritual and intellectual tradition. We do this by:
- bringing together a small group of interested individuals (max 25),
- for an extended (4-9 days) period of intensive intellectual work together,
- alternated with moments of liturgical celebration and individual prayer
- in an environment that reminds participants of the bounty and beauty of the gifts of human life, nature and community.
The Institute can also develop educational programs in response to specific requests from other entities such as health care facilities, associations, or institutions of higher education.
RESEARCH. The Institute undertakes targeted research projects on specific themes. These projects either reflect the strategic research agenda of the Institute itself, or are undertaken in response to external entities requesting a critical examination of an urgent ethical challenge. In addition, the Institute cooperates with other entities around the world engaged in scholarly endeavors on topics in Catholic bioethics.
- Henk ten Have, MD, PhD. Member of the Board of Directors of the St. André International Center for Ethics and Integrity (France); Professor Emeritus of Healthcare Ethics at Duquesne University (USA) and Research Professor at the Faculty of Bioethics of Anahuac University (Mexico); and member of the Pontifical Academy for Life (Vatican).
- William Sullivan, MD, PhD, PhD. Member of the Board of Directors of the St. André International Center for Ethics and Integrity (France); Joseph P. Kennedy Sr. Chair in Bioethics at Georgetown University (USA); and member of the Pontifical Academy for Life (Vatican).
- Paulina Taboada, MD, PhD. Member of the Board of Directors of the St. André International Center for Ethics and Integrity (France); Associate Professor of bioethics and of internal medicine at the Faculty of Medicine, Pontifical Catholic University of Chile; and member of the Pontifical Academy for Life (Vatican).
- Jos V.M. Welie, MA, MMedS, JD, PhD. Founding President of the St. André International Center for Ethics and Integrity (France); Professor Emeritus of medical humanities at Creighton University’s School of Medicine (Omaha, USA); and member of the Pontifical Academy for Life (Vatican).
The planning the activities of the St. André International Institute for Catholic Bioethics, the Leadership Team gratefully acknowledges the strategic advice from the following members of the Institute’s Advisory Board.
Mgr. Nicolas Brouwet, bishop of of the diocese of Nîmes (France), theologian, and member of the Committee on Bioethics of the French Conference of Catholic bishops.
Dr. Fabien Revol, Jean Bastaire Chair in Ethics and Ecology, Catholic University of Lyon and Director of the Centre Hélène et Jean Bastaire” devoted to the study of integral ecology in Berganty (Lot, France)
Dr. Bernadette Tobin, Associate Professor and Founding Director of The Plunkett Centre at the Australian Catholic University; member of the Pontifical Academy for Life.
The St. André International Center for Ethics and Integrity, like the town of St. André d’Olerargues in which its France-based physical headquarters are located, is named after the apostle St. Andrew. However, we have chosen St. André of Montreal (Canada) as patron saint of the St. André International Institute for Catholic Boethics. Brother André (1845-1937) was credited with healing thousands through his care and prayers, though he steadfastly denied any role in it, giving all credit instead to God who heals through Saint Joseph’s intercession. He died on January 6, 1937, aged 91. Despite the harsh weather, almost a million people filed past his coffin. Brother André was canonized on October 17, 2010. His memorial is celebrated in Canada on January 7, and elsewhere in the world on January 6.
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