The Christian Virtues in Medical Practice
by Edmund D. Pellegrino and David C. Thomasma
Georgetown University Press, 1996
Cloth: 978-0-87840-566-4
Library of Congress Classification R725.56.P45 1996
Dewey Decimal Classification 174.2


Christian health care professionals in our secular and pluralistic society often face uncertainty about the place religious faith holds in today's medical practice. Through an examination of a virtue-based ethics, this book proposes a theological view of medical ethics that helps the Christian physician reconcile faith, reason, and professional duty.

Edmund D. Pellegrino and David C. Thomasma trace the history of virtue in moral thought, and they examine current debate about a virtue ethic's place in contemporary bioethics. Their proposal balances theological ethics, based on the virtues of faith, hope, and charity, with contemporary medical ethics, based on the principles of beneficence, justice, and autonomy. The result is a theory of clinical ethics that centers on the virtue of charity and is manifest in practical moral decisions.

Using Christian bioethical principles, the authors address today's divisive issues in medicine. For health care providers and all those involved in the fields of ethics and religion, this volume shows how faith and reason can combine to create the best possible healing relationship between health care professional and patient.

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