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Local religious leaders issue joint statement opposing Question 2


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A group of 17 Boston area religious leaders and faith organizations issued a joint statement Oct. 22 stating their opposition to Question 2 "Prescribing Medication to End Life."

Modeled after similar laws in Washington and Oregon, Question 2, which will appear on the Nov. 6 ballot in Massachusetts, would allow physicians to prescribe a lethal dose of medication, usually barbiturates, to patients who have received a terminal diagnosis and are expected to live for fewer than six months.

Earlier this month, on Oct. 4, a group of nearly 60 area faith leaders attended a gathering hosted by Greek Orthodox Metropolitan Methodios on an interfaith response to the ballot initiative at the metropolis's headquarters in Brookline. All of the signatories of the joint statement were either in attendance or represented at the interfaith gathering.

Following is the text of the Oct. 22 statement:

Across many religions, we stand united against Question 2 because promoting suicide is a violation of God's law.

-- Physician-assisted suicide is a false answer to the authentic needs of the terminally ill for support, comfort and care.

-- Question 2 relies on a six month prognosis for terminal illness that medical professionals agree is often uncertain at best.

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