Vatican City. November 4, 2008. After seven years of education
and research since its foundation in 2001, the Bioethics School
at the Pontifical Regina Apostolorum College has been granted
definitive canonical establishment by the Holy See, with a decree
dated October 16, 2008. This step is an important boost
for an institution that has proven to be of critical
importance for the pro-life cause, since it trains professionals who
can influence key bioethical decisions in hospitals, research institutions, universities,
and media outlets.
“Teach our society how to believe in its
The official announcement was made by Archbishop Jean-Louis Bruguès, OP,
Secretary of the Congregation for Catholic Education, during the ceremony
inaugurating the 2008-2009 academic year.
In his inaugural speech, Archbishop
Bruguès explained that “the most urgent task for our Church
today is that of once more offering the delight of
eternity.” Addressing the academic community of the Ateneo, he reminded
them that this task “should be a priority for those
who, like you, are responsible for transmitting and educating. Keep
in mind the paths of hope. In more secular terms,
teach our society how to believe in its future.” The
School of Bioethics of the Pontifical Ateneo Regina Apostolorum began
its classes in October 2001.
The students, staff, and faculty
of the Ateneo were moved with deep gratitude at the
news, which was communicated through a letter from the Prefect
of the same Congregation, Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski, addressed to the
Grand Chancellor, Father Álvaro Corcuera, LC.
establishment of the School of Bioethics,” said Rector Father Pedro
Barrajon, LC, “is a great source of joy for us,
because it strengthens our bond to the Holy Father and
encourages us to continue in our commitment to defending human
life from conception until natural death.”
In the heart of
the pro-life campaign
The school, which is the first
of its kind in the world, was begun as a
response to John Paul II´s invitation in Evangelium Vitae, to
“activate a great campaign in support of life.” The objective
is to form biotechnical professionals who can competently respond to
the many complex ethical problems that arise in the area
of biomedical and bioethical science, in regards to respect for
human dignity and the defense of life for each and
There are various possibilities for working in this
area: clinical bioethics committees, hospitals, and biomedical and biological research
centers, universities and centers for higher education, institutions dedicated to
studies on marriage and the family, structures for help and
service, and various ecclesiastical institutions.
To meet these needs, School
of Bioethics offers a multi-faceted program: a Bachelor´s, Licentiate, and
Doctorate program, in addition to the Masters Program and the
International Summer Course for Higher Studies.
To learn more about
the bioethics school, visit this link.