Fifty years ago the television show I Love Lucy couldn't use the term "pregnant" to announce the imminent arrival of little Ricky. Today, the "Octomom" and her fourteen children are reportedly in negotiations to join Jon and Kate plus Eight on the reality TV circuit.
What used to be referred to as a blessed event is starting to sound more like a competitive sport! Yet who would suggest that a loving person who yearns for a child should be limited in their efforts to fulfill that yearning through the latest assisted reproductive technologies (ARTs)? And what are the ethical considerations that should govern their use?
In this challenging study for adults we'll explore the most commonly used ARTs and examine some of the moral, social, medical, and economic issues that have been raised by their growing use:
- How do new technologies for helping individuals and couples become pregnant conform to or challenge your understanding of fertility and reproduction?
- Are there limits to how far science should go in helping people reproduce?
- How does your church counsel or support individuals and couples who are struggling with infertility and/or considering or currently using ARTs?
- How should a faith community signal openness to discussing issues of reproductive loss, infertility, stillbirths, and difficulties in adoption?