*A recent report about the lack of organ donations among Hispanics, particularly within the Christian community, has sparked debate on whether it is consistent with Christian values.
According to Dr. Gilberto Velez of Iglesia Cristiana Misericordia Church in Texas, “there is no biblical evidence that prohibits” organ donation.
Reuters reported earlier this week that Hispanics are less likely to donate organs than Americans as a whole.
“We find that the Hispanic community tells us, ‘My religion says not to donate,’ and ‘I can’t have an open casket because the body will be damaged,'” Esmeralda Perez of the Texas Organ Sharing Alliance told Reuters. “They feel that their loved one will be disfigured, or the person will not be able to get into heaven because their body will not be whole.”
Norma Garcia, a Christian, was among the few Hispanics who decided to donate her daughter’s heart and liver after she was declared brain dead by doctors in 2001, according to Reuters. The majority of her family was appalled and indignant about Garcia’s decision.
Commenting on the issue, Velez, who also serves as chairman of the Board for the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, explained one possible reason some Christians are against organ donation.
Read more here.