Pope Francis Inspires Efforts to Increase Organ, Eye and Tissue Donation in the United States
Posted September 21, 2015 in News Category
Pope Francis describes donation as “a testimony of love for our neighbors”
Pope Francis’s visit to the United States has generated tremendous excitement and the momentum continues to build in anticipation of the arrival of His Holiness. From every corner of the country, Catholics and people of all faiths rejoice and are inspired by Pope Francis’s visit and his support for organ, eye and tissue donation.
“The donation and transplantation community welcomes Pope Francis,” said Susan A. Stuart, Board Chair for Donate Life America. “As a Catholic, I have received much inspiration and direction from the Pope’s teaching that hope is the anchor which keeps us holding on. The Pope’s message of love and kindness can encourage more people to make the choice to give life by registering to become an organ, eye and tissue donor – so that the anchor of hope transforms into reality for those who are waiting.”
Pope Francis described the act of organ donation as “a testimony of love for our neighbor” as he met with the Transplant Committee for the Council of Europe, which gathered in Rome last year. Organ, eye and tissue donation is a true act of charity and love, which are major tenets of Christianity. In fact, all major religions, including Roman Catholicism, support donation.
Faith and hope play an important role in the donation and transplantation process. From those who await transplants so they may return to their lives and families, to registered donors who hope to one day make a lifesaving difference, to donor families who feel a sense of peace knowing that their loved ones gave life to others – all have faith in something greater than themselves.
Today, there are more than 122,000 people in the United States whose lives depend on the kindness of strangers to make the choice to Donate Life. Sadly, on average, 22 of those patients die each day because the organs they need are not donated in time, which is exactly why donation is so vital. As we celebrate the Holy Father’s historic visit to the United States, let us reflect on the life-affirming virtues of organ, eye and tissue donation. In this spirit, Donate Life America urges people of all faiths to register in honor of Pope Francis’s powerful message of charity and love.
Registering as a donor is fast and simple. Visit www.LoveForNeighbor.org today to sign up.
Mid-America Transplant Services (MTS) saves and improves lives through organ and tissue donations. For more than 40 years it has facilitated and coordinated organ and tissue donation, and now serves 84 counties covering eastern Missouri, southern Illinois and northeast Arkansas that together are homes to 4.7 million people. It saves lives by providing expert and compassionate care. It was the first such organization in the US to use an in-house operating room for organ recovery and pioneered innovative models of increasing donor registry enrollment in an effort to provide organs and tissues to those in need. It is federally designated and one of 58 such organizations in the US.