The National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly

Volume 22, Issue 4, Winter 2022

Elena Kraus, Cara Buskmiller
Pages 617-631

The Experience of Catholic Physicians
Converting Misconceptions to Conversations

Catholic physicians who believe that the Church offers a positive, intellectually compelling, and beautiful religion have a unique experience in their work and life. These physicians often encounter a particular difficulty related to mischaracterization of Catholic doctrines as restrictive, impersonal, or even disrespectful of human freedom. Multiple physician stories are briefly recounted as examples of these experiences. This difficulty is most painfully encountered when professional colleagues absorb scandal, factual errors about the teachings, negative stereotypes, or incompatible ideologies. The Catholic physician can address this difficulty with tact, witness, and gentle discussion of Catholic doctrine and the natural consequences of ethical and ideological missteps in mainstream medicine.