Baby Indi Was an Innocent Victim of the Culture of Death

How could a court reach such a decision? How could doctors decide that this child’s life was not worth saving?

Terminally ill British infant Indi Gregory has been given more time to live after a court on Thursday, Nov. 9, 2023, gave her family permission to appeal a judge’s decision mandating where her life support can be removed.
Terminally ill British infant Indi Gregory has been given more time to live after a court on Thursday, Nov. 9, 2023, gave her family permission to appeal a judge’s decision mandating where her life support can be removed. (photo: Credit: Christian Concern / Christian Concern)

By now there have been thousands of words written about Baby Indi Gregory, the 8-month-old girl who passed away Nov. 13 in her mother’s arms.

The story should be well-known to anyone who cares about the preciousness of life. Indi suffered from a rare ailment called mitochondrial disease, which saps all the energy from the body. Her parents wanted her left on life support and flown to Italy where a hospital gave Indi’s parents hope that their beautiful child could be saved.

The Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham, England, decided to usurp the Gregorys’ parental rights and ruled that Indi should be taken off life support — which meant a death sentence.

And they balked at sending her to Italy, where there was a chance she could be healed.

I assume that some of the doctors who made this decision are parents. I wonder whether they wouldn’t do everything possible to help their child survive.

Certainly, there are cases when life-saving intervention can become utterly useless, only prolonging pain and suffering. But this was not the case here. Rome's Bambino Gesù Hospital, which we assume is staffed by competent doctors, thought there was a reason to fight for Indi’s life.

I keep thinking of a fictional situation in which my daughter, when she was little, falls into a deep lake and she’s going to drown unless I rescue her. She’s barely floating but alive. Her chances of survival have grown slim. But because I’m not a monster I try to rescue her. Then a policeman shows up with a court order that says you can’t do that. I’m then restrained from jumping in and I watch my child sink into death. It’s a nightmare scenario, right?

But what’s the difference between my made-up horror story and a U.K. hospital and court doing the same thing to Indi and her family?

I keep asking myself how a court, in a supposed democracy, could reach such a decision — and how doctors, whose job it is to battle disease and preserve life, could decide that this child’s life was not worth saving. Even if they believed that it was a long shot, why would they not at least try?

I think I know the answer: It wasn’t about saving money. Sending Indi to Italy would not have cost the medical system a cent. Rather, this was about an anti-life ideology. This is what years of abortion and legalized euthanasia have brought. (In Britain, euthanasia is illegal but there are no ramifications for ending a patient’s life.)

It’s another faint echo from Nazi Germany where the state determined who was considered worthy of life. Only the strongest deserved to live … to eat. Food was not for the weak and useless.

What else can explain this horrible story about Baby Indi? What will prevent it from happening again?

The Marriott Waterfront Hotel in Baltimore, Maryland, is the site of the 2023 Fall Assembly of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

2023 USCCB Assembly Review, and UK Removes Baby Indi’s Life Support (Nov. 18)

The U.S. Bishops met this week in Baltimore for the Fall USCCB assembly where the 2024 elections, pro-life leadership, National Eucharistic Revival, Synod on Synodality and saints were on the agenda. The Register’s editor-in-chief Shannon Mullen was on the ground in Baltimore. He joins us now with highlights. Then we turn to the sad news of baby Indi Gregory, who died in Great Britain this week after her life support was removed against her parents wishes. The Register’s UK correspondent, KV Turley, gives us insights into how Great Britain has come to this point where parents have no power to decide their children’s medical care.

Cardinal-elect Víctor Manuel Fernández was appointed by Pope Francis on July 1, 2023, to become the next prefect for the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith.

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