Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Organ donation

Post by Graham

I am the proud owner of an organ donation card and have been for some time. Aren`t I good ! I feel quite smug about this and superior to those who, upon death, can`t yet bring themselves to bequeath vital parts of their body to those desperately in need of them. I also firmly believe we should adopt a system of opting out of the scheme, rather than opting into it, such as been suggested in Wales recently.

Yet my feeling of self-satisfaction has been recently shattered ! Just a few days ago I read of a kidney charity that has just been launched called `Give A Kidney-One`s Enough`. In the past four years, apparently, more than 80 people have donated a kidney to a person they have never met and probably never will. This surely is altruism of the highest order and I feel guilty that I personally lack the courage to do such a thing in my lifetime.

I don`t know how many of the donors (it was 88 at the last count) are Unitarians or practising Christians of some sort, but I am willing to bet that a good number of them, perhaps even a majority, are non-believers. How do we explain this ? Is this the working of the Divine (the Holy Spirit, if you like) within the heart of us mere mortals ? What makes a person prepared to sacrifice their own health for the benefit of others about whom nothing is known, and not just for the benefit of another member of their family ? Surely, if it is not God working through us, it is a testimony of the generosity of the human spirit and gives the lie to the belief that all is rotten in our society. Thank God for their altruism !

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