ReligionNewsBlog.com — A three-year-old boy can be given a blood transfusion during surgery despite religious objections from his Jehovah’s Witness parents, the High Court in Ireland has ruled.
The child, who cannot be named by order of the court, needs to have his tonsils out because of recurring infections and because it is delaying development of speech.
The boy’s father told the court yesterday that he and his wife wanted their son to get the best medical treatment but there was a core belief that blood “is not to be taken to the body”.
A consultant treating the child said in an affidavit there was a risk of death and brain damage if the hospital was not in a position to administer any transfusion. […]
Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns granted the hospital an order permitting a transfusion to be given if necessary. […]
Mr Justice Kearns said he appreciated the way in which the hospital approached the matter and showed great respect for the parents’ religion.
He also complimented the parents for the courteous and dignified manner in which they had put their views and made no order on costs of the application, meaning each side pays its own.
PREVIOUS COURT DECISIONS REGARDING BLOOD TRANSFUSIONS
Last September Ireland’s High Court made an order allowing the Coombe Hospital in Dublin to carry out an emergency blood transfusion on a baby girl born prematurely last week. Her parents, Jehovah’s Witnesses, had refused to agree to a blood transfusion were it to become necessary.
In January last year a life-saving blood transfusion was administered to a critically ill baby under a court order secured by a Dublin hospital at a late-night hearing in a High Court judge’s home.
In September, 2006 the High Court intervened to save the life of a seriously ill adult African woman by ordering a Dublin hospital to give her a life-saving blood transfusion.
Legal representatives of the sect launched an appeal, but later abandoned it because they felt that the judgement did not necessarily set a case precedent as the presiding High Court judge had noted that the facts of the case were such that it was highly unlikely it would recur.
Many teachings and practices of Jehovah’s Witnesses contradict or otherwise deny the essential doctrines of the Christian faith. Therefore Christians consider the movement to be, theologically, a cult of Christianity.
Sociologically the organization, whose legal entity is called Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, has cult-like elements as well.
One of its most destructive teachings is on the subject of blood and blood transfusions. As it does on many other subjects the sect’s leadership has flip-flopped and wobbled on the issue, though, but overall it’s interpretation of the Bible’s comments about blood are unsound at best. It should be noted that Jehovah’s Witnesses have produced their own, widely discredited Bible ‘translation,’ — the New World Translation — which was needed in order to support the organization’s un-biblical doctrines.
The doctrine on blood has led to countless unnecessary deaths among Jehovah’s Witnesses and their children.
Christians, and many Jehovah’s Witnesses as well, oppose the organization’s teachings on the subject.
The website of Witnesses for Jesus, which reaches out to Jehovah’s Witnesses, includes the online book, Biblical Answers To Questions Jehovah’s Witnesses Ask. Several chapters in the book address the movement’s teachings regarding blood.
Associated Jehovah’s Witnesses For Reform on Blood is operated by current Jehovah’s Witnesses who wish to see the organization change its stance on the subject.
Research resources on Jehovah’s Witnesses