Religious Perspectives

Major religions support organ and tissue donation – as a way of helping others, as an individual’s right to choose and as an unparalleled gift of generosity and compassion. Find out your religion’s perspective on organ and tissue donation.

AME & ZION AME

Organ and tissue donation is viewed as an act of neighborly love and charity by these denominations. They encourage all members to support donation as a way of helping others.

AMISH

The Amish will consent to donation if they know that it is for the health and welfare of the transplant recipient. They would be reluctant to donate their organs if the transplant outcome was known to be questionable. John Hostetler, an authority on Amish religion, says in his book Amish Society, that “The Amish believe that since God created the human body, it is God who heals: however, nothing in the Amish understanding of the Bible forbids them from using modern medical services including surgery, anesthesia, hospitalization, dental work, blood transfusions and immunization.”

ASSEMBLY OF GOD

The Church views the decision to donate as an individual choice. Organ and tissue donation is highly supported by the denomination but the decision to donate is up to the individual.

BAPTIST

The church leaves the decision up to the individual and donation is supported as an act of charity.

BUDDHISM

Buddhists believe that organ and tissue donation is a matter of individual conscience and places high value on acts of compassion. The importance of letting loved ones know your wishes is stressed.

CATHOLICSM

Catholics view organ and tissue donation as an act of charity, love and self-sacrifice. Organ and tissue donation is morally and ethically acceptable. Pope John Paul II stated, “The Catholic Church would promote the fact that there is a need for organ donors and that Christians should accept this as a ‘challenge to their generosity and fraternal love’ so long as ethical principles are followed.”

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE

Christian Scientists normally rely on spiritual means of healing instead of medical. They are free, however, to choose whatever form of medical treatment they desire, including transplants.

CHRISTIAN CHURCH/DISCIPLES OF CHRIST

There are no prohibitions against organ transplants.

CHURCH OF CHRIST/INDEPENDENT

Organ transplants should not be a religious problem.

EPISCOPAL

The Episcopal Church passed a resolution in 1982 that recognizes the life-giving benefits of organ, blood and tissue donation. All Christians are encouraged to become donors “as part of their ministry to others in the name of Christ, who gave his life in its fullness.”

GREEK ORTHODOX

The Church supports donation as a way to better human life in the form of transplantation that would lead to improvements in the treatment and prevention of disease.

HINDUIS

As stated by the Hindu Temple Society of North America, organ and tissue donation is an individual decision and Hindus are not prohibited by religious law from donating their organs or tissues. According to H.L. Trivedi in Transplanting Proceedings, “There is nothing in the Hindu religion indicating that parts of humans could not be used to alleviate the sufferings of other humans.”

INDEPENDENT CONSERVATIVE EVANGELICAL

Generally, Evangelicals have no opposition to organ and tissue donation. Each church is autonomous and leaves the decision to donate up to the individual.

ISLAM

The religion of Islam strongly believes in the principle of saving human lives. According to A. Sachedina in Transplanting Proceedings, “The majority of the Muslim scholars, belonging to various schools of Islamic law, have invoked the principle of priority of saving human life and have permitted the organ transplant as a necessity to procure that noble end.”

JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES

According to the Watch Tower Society, Jehovah’s Witnesses believe donation is a matter of individual decision. Jehovah’s Witnesses are often assumed to be against donation because of the opposition to blood transfusions. However, this merely means that all blood must be removed from organs and tissues before being transplanted.

JUDAISM

There is strong support and encouragement for organ donation within all branches of Judaism. According to many authorities, if one is in a position to donate an organ to save another's life, it is permitted (and some say even obligatory) to do so, even if the donor never knows who the beneficiary will be. The infinite worth of a human being and the imperative to save a life when and where possible is a basic principle of Jewish law and ethics. This can include the donation of corneas since eyesight restoration can be considered a lifesaving operation.

LUTHERAN

Lutherans passed a resolution in 1984 stating that donation contributes to the well-being of humanity and can be “an expression of sacrificial love for a neighbor in need.” They call on “members to consider donating…and to make any necessary family or legal arrangements, including the use of a signed donor card.”

MENNONITE

There is no prohibition against donation and transplantation in the Mennonite faith. Church officials state such decisions are individual ones.

MORMON

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints believes the decision to donate is an individual one made in conjunction with family, medical personnel and prayer. They do no oppose donation.

PRESBYTERIAN

Presbyterians encourage and support donation. They respect a person’s right to make decisions regarding his or her own body.

QUAKERS

Officials for the Quaker faith do not oppose organ donation and transplantation. The decision, they say, is an individual one.

SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST

Donation and transplantation are strongly encouraged. In fact, Seventh Day Adventists have many transplant hospitals, including Loma Linda in California which specializes in pediatric heart transplants.

UNITARIAN UNIVERSALIST

Organ and tissue donation is widely supported by Unitarian Universalists who view it as an act of love and selfless giving.

UNITED METHODIST

The Church issued a policy statement saying that the “United Methodist Church recognizes the life-giving benefits of organ and tissue donation, and thereby encourages all Christians to become organ and tissue donors…as a part of their ministry to others in the name of Christ, who gave His life in its fullness.”

UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST

When advocated by medical practitioners to improve or preserve human life, this procedure is encouraged, providing all appropriate consents are obtained.

Is it the right decision?

You may have questions and reservations about becoming an organ donor, especially concerning how your religion views your decision. In fact, all major religions support organ and tissue donation – as a way of helping others, as an individual’s right to choose and as an unparalleled gift of generosity and compassion.

You may also have concerns about customary funeral or memorial arrangements if you become a donor. However, organ and tissue donation does not interfere with traditional funeral plans, including those with open-casket viewings. In addition, your loved ones will not incur any costs simply because you are an organ donor.

Choosing to Give the Greatest Gift

Modern medicine, supported by ancient religious beliefs, provides each of us with an extraordinary opportunity to perform the supreme act of charity – to save another human being’s life.

Today, you can make a choice to give hope, healing and life – the greatest gift of all – by becoming an organ and tissue donor. More than 420 Delawareans– men, women and children of all ages – wait for the phone call that can mean the difference between life and death. We invite you to discuss this selfless decision with your religious leaders and family members. Choose to give the gift of life – place the donor designation on your driver’s license, learner's permit or state identification card. Sign Up Now!

Religious Leader Perspectives

“Many devout people believe that God is the creator of all life and has given us bodies which, in a sense, are on loan to enable us to do good. One of the greatest gifts we can give when our body is no longer animated is to pass on the gift of God to another child of God. Our gift helps them to continue giving.”

Bishop Anthony G. Bosco
Bishop Emeritus
Catholic Diocese of Greensburg


“In view of the wonderful advancements made in medical science concerning organ and tissue donation, God has shown favor in this area and I believe that He is pleased when we help to bring forth life and a better quality of life through donation.”

Bishop Ernest C. Morris, Sr. D.D.
Former President
Black Clergy of Philadelphia and Vicinity



“Anyone who saves one life . . . it is as if they have saved an entire world.”

Jewish Law Code
Mishnah,
Sanhedrin 4:5
Provided by Rabbi Robert Rubin
Congregation Beth T’fillah of Overbrook Park



"God calls on us to do unto others as we would have them do unto us. We can answer that call by deciding to be organ and tissue donor.”

Reverend Bonnie Camarda
President
Hispanic Clergy of Philadelphia and Vicinity

AME & ZION AME

Organ and tissue donation is viewed as an act of neighborly love and charity by these denominations. They encourage all members to support donation as a way of helping others.

AMISH

The Amish will consent to donation if they know that it is for the health and welfare of the transplant recipient. They would be reluctant to donate their organs if the transplant outcome was known to be questionable. John Hostetler, an authority on Amish religion, says in his book Amish Society, that “The Amish believe that since God created the human body, it is God who heals: however, nothing in the Amish understanding of the Bible forbids them from using modern medical services including surgery, anesthesia, hospitalization, dental work, blood transfusions and immunization.”

ASSEMBLY OF GOD

The Church views the decision to donate as an individual choice. Organ and tissue donation is highly supported by the denomination but the decision to donate is up to the individual.

BAPTIST

The church leaves the decision up to the individual and donation is supported as an act of charity.

BUDDHISM

Buddhists believe that organ and tissue donation is a matter of individual conscience and places high value on acts of compassion. The importance of letting loved ones know your wishes is stressed.

CATHOLICSM

Catholics view organ and tissue donation as an act of charity, love and self-sacrifice. Organ and tissue donation is morally and ethically acceptable. Pope John Paul II stated, “The Catholic Church would promote the fact that there is a need for organ donors and that Christians should accept this as a ‘challenge to their generosity and fraternal love’ so long as ethical principles are followed.”

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE

Christian Scientists normally rely on spiritual means of healing instead of medical. They are free, however, to choose whatever form of medical treatment they desire, including transplants.

CHRISTIAN CHURCH/DISCIPLES OF CHRIST

There are no prohibitions against organ transplants.

CHURCH OF CHRIST/INDEPENDENT

Organ transplants should not be a religious problem.

EPISCOPAL

The Episcopal Church passed a resolution in 1982 that recognizes the life-giving benefits of organ, blood and tissue donation. All Christians are encouraged to become donors “as part of their ministry to others in the name of Christ, who gave his life in its fullness.”

GREEK ORTHODOX

The Church supports donation as a way to better human life in the form of transplantation that would lead to improvements in the treatment and prevention of disease.

HINDUIS

As stated by the Hindu Temple Society of North America, organ and tissue donation is an individual decision and Hindus are not prohibited by religious law from donating their organs or tissues. According to H.L. Trivedi in Transplanting Proceedings, “There is nothing in the Hindu religion indicating that parts of humans could not be used to alleviate the sufferings of other humans.”

INDEPENDENT CONSERVATIVE EVANGELICAL

Generally, Evangelicals have no opposition to organ and tissue donation. Each church is autonomous and leaves the decision to donate up to the individual.

ISLAM

The religion of Islam strongly believes in the principle of saving human lives. According to A. Sachedina in Transplanting Proceedings, “The majority of the Muslim scholars, belonging to various schools of Islamic law, have invoked the principle of priority of saving human life and have permitted the organ transplant as a necessity to procure that noble end.”

JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES

According to the Watch Tower Society, Jehovah’s Witnesses believe donation is a matter of individual decision. Jehovah’s Witnesses are often assumed to be against donation because of the opposition to blood transfusions. However, this merely means that all blood must be removed from organs and tissues before being transplanted.

JUDAISM

There is strong support and encouragement for organ donation within all branches of Judaism. According to many authorities, if one is in a position to donate an organ to save another's life, it is permitted (and some say even obligatory) to do so, even if the donor never knows who the beneficiary will be. The infinite worth of a human being and the imperative to save a life when and where possible is a basic principle of Jewish law and ethics. This can include the donation of corneas since eyesight restoration can be considered a lifesaving operation.

LUTHERAN

Lutherans passed a resolution in 1984 stating that donation contributes to the well-being of humanity and can be “an expression of sacrificial love for a neighbor in need.” They call on “members to consider donating…and to make any necessary family or legal arrangements, including the use of a signed donor card.”

MENNONITE

There is no prohibition against donation and transplantation in the Mennonite faith. Church officials state such decisions are individual ones.

MORMON

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints believes the decision to donate is an individual one made in conjunction with family, medical personnel and prayer. They do no oppose donation.

PRESBYTERIAN

Presbyterians encourage and support donation. They respect a person’s right to make decisions regarding his or her own body.

QUAKERS

Officials for the Quaker faith do not oppose organ donation and transplantation. The decision, they say, is an individual one.

SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST

Donation and transplantation are strongly encouraged. In fact, Seventh Day Adventists have many transplant hospitals, including Loma Linda in California which specializes in pediatric heart transplants.

UNITARIAN UNIVERSALIST

Organ and tissue donation is widely supported by Unitarian Universalists who view it as an act of love and selfless giving.

UNITED METHODIST

The Church issued a policy statement saying that the “United Methodist Church recognizes the life-giving benefits of organ and tissue donation, and thereby encourages all Christians to become organ and tissue donors…as a part of their ministry to others in the name of Christ, who gave His life in its fullness.”

UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST

When advocated by medical practitioners to improve or preserve human life, this procedure is encouraged, providing all appropriate consents are obtained.

Is it the right decision?

You may have questions and reservations about becoming an organ donor, especially concerning how your religion views your decision. In fact, all major religions support organ and tissue donation – as a way of helping others, as an individual’s right to choose and as an unparalleled gift of generosity and compassion.

You may also have concerns about customary funeral or memorial arrangements if you become a donor. However, organ and tissue donation does not interfere with traditional funeral plans, including those with open-casket viewings. In addition, your loved ones will not incur any costs simply because you are an organ donor.

Choosing to Give the Greatest Gift

Modern medicine, supported by ancient religious beliefs, provides each of us with an extraordinary opportunity to perform the supreme act of charity – to save another human being’s life.

Today, you can make a choice to give hope, healing and life – the greatest gift of all – by becoming an organ and tissue donor. More than 420 Delawareans– men, women and children of all ages – wait for the phone call that can mean the difference between life and death. We invite you to discuss this selfless decision with your religious leaders and family members. Choose to give the gift of life – place the donor designation on your driver’s license, learner's permit or state identification card. Sign Up Now!

Religious Leader Perspectives

“Many devout people believe that God is the creator of all life and has given us bodies which, in a sense, are on loan to enable us to do good. One of the greatest gifts we can give when our body is no longer animated is to pass on the gift of God to another child of God. Our gift helps them to continue giving.”

Bishop Anthony G. Bosco
Bishop Emeritus
Catholic Diocese of Greensburg


“In view of the wonderful advancements made in medical science concerning organ and tissue donation, God has shown favor in this area and I believe that He is pleased when we help to bring forth life and a better quality of life through donation.”

Bishop Ernest C. Morris, Sr. D.D.
Former President
Black Clergy of Philadelphia and Vicinity



“Anyone who saves one life . . . it is as if they have saved an entire world.”

Jewish Law Code
Mishnah,
Sanhedrin 4:5
Provided by Rabbi Robert Rubin
Congregation Beth T’fillah of Overbrook Park



"God calls on us to do unto others as we would have them do unto us. We can answer that call by deciding to be organ and tissue donor.”

Reverend Bonnie Camarda
President
Hispanic Clergy of Philadelphia and Vicinity

AME & ZION AME

Organ and tissue donation is viewed as an act of neighborly love and charity by these denominations. They encourage all members to support donation as a way of helping others.

AMISH

The Amish will consent to donation if they know that it is for the health and welfare of the transplant recipient. They would be reluctant to donate their organs if the transplant outcome was known to be questionable. John Hostetler, an authority on Amish religion, says in his book Amish Society, that “The Amish believe that since God created the human body, it is God who heals: however, nothing in the Amish understanding of the Bible forbids them from using modern medical services including surgery, anesthesia, hospitalization, dental work, blood transfusions and immunization.”

ASSEMBLY OF GOD

The Church views the decision to donate as an individual choice. Organ and tissue donation is highly supported by the denomination but the decision to donate is up to the individual.

BAPTIST

The church leaves the decision up to the individual and donation is supported as an act of charity.

BUDDHISM

Buddhists believe that organ and tissue donation is a matter of individual conscience and places high value on acts of compassion. The importance of letting loved ones know your wishes is stressed.

CATHOLICSM

Catholics view organ and tissue donation as an act of charity, love and self-sacrifice. Organ and tissue donation is morally and ethically acceptable. Pope John Paul II stated, “The Catholic Church would promote the fact that there is a need for organ donors and that Christians should accept this as a ‘challenge to their generosity and fraternal love’ so long as ethical principles are followed.”

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE

Christian Scientists normally rely on spiritual means of healing instead of medical. They are free, however, to choose whatever form of medical treatment they desire, including transplants.

CHRISTIAN CHURCH/DISCIPLES OF CHRIST

There are no prohibitions against organ transplants.

CHURCH OF CHRIST/INDEPENDENT

Organ transplants should not be a religious problem.

EPISCOPAL

The Episcopal Church passed a resolution in 1982 that recognizes the life-giving benefits of organ, blood and tissue donation. All Christians are encouraged to become donors “as part of their ministry to others in the name of Christ, who gave his life in its fullness.”

GREEK ORTHODOX

The Church supports donation as a way to better human life in the form of transplantation that would lead to improvements in the treatment and prevention of disease.

HINDUIS

As stated by the Hindu Temple Society of North America, organ and tissue donation is an individual decision and Hindus are not prohibited by religious law from donating their organs or tissues. According to H.L. Trivedi in Transplanting Proceedings, “There is nothing in the Hindu religion indicating that parts of humans could not be used to alleviate the sufferings of other humans.”

INDEPENDENT CONSERVATIVE EVANGELICAL

Generally, Evangelicals have no opposition to organ and tissue donation. Each church is autonomous and leaves the decision to donate up to the individual.

ISLAM

The religion of Islam strongly believes in the principle of saving human lives. According to A. Sachedina in Transplanting Proceedings, “The majority of the Muslim scholars, belonging to various schools of Islamic law, have invoked the principle of priority of saving human life and have permitted the organ transplant as a necessity to procure that noble end.”

JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES

According to the Watch Tower Society, Jehovah’s Witnesses believe donation is a matter of individual decision. Jehovah’s Witnesses are often assumed to be against donation because of the opposition to blood transfusions. However, this merely means that all blood must be removed from organs and tissues before being transplanted.

JUDAISM

There is strong support and encouragement for organ donation within all branches of Judaism. According to many authorities, if one is in a position to donate an organ to save another's life, it is permitted (and some say even obligatory) to do so, even if the donor never knows who the beneficiary will be. The infinite worth of a human being and the imperative to save a life when and where possible is a basic principle of Jewish law and ethics. This can include the donation of corneas since eyesight restoration can be considered a lifesaving operation.

LUTHERAN

Lutherans passed a resolution in 1984 stating that donation contributes to the well-being of humanity and can be “an expression of sacrificial love for a neighbor in need.” They call on “members to consider donating…and to make any necessary family or legal arrangements, including the use of a signed donor card.”

MENNONITE

There is no prohibition against donation and transplantation in the Mennonite faith. Church officials state such decisions are individual ones.

MORMON

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints believes the decision to donate is an individual one made in conjunction with family, medical personnel and prayer. They do no oppose donation.

PRESBYTERIAN

Presbyterians encourage and support donation. They respect a person’s right to make decisions regarding his or her own body.

QUAKERS

Officials for the Quaker faith do not oppose organ donation and transplantation. The decision, they say, is an individual one.

SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST

Donation and transplantation are strongly encouraged. In fact, Seventh Day Adventists have many transplant hospitals, including Loma Linda in California which specializes in pediatric heart transplants.

UNITARIAN UNIVERSALIST

Organ and tissue donation is widely supported by Unitarian Universalists who view it as an act of love and selfless giving.

UNITED METHODIST

The Church issued a policy statement saying that the “United Methodist Church recognizes the life-giving benefits of organ and tissue donation, and thereby encourages all Christians to become organ and tissue donors…as a part of their ministry to others in the name of Christ, who gave His life in its fullness.”

UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST

When advocated by medical practitioners to improve or preserve human life, this procedure is encouraged, providing all appropriate consents are obtained.

Is it the right decision?

You may have questions and reservations about becoming an organ donor, especially concerning how your religion views your decision. In fact, all major religions support organ and tissue donation – as a way of helping others, as an individual’s right to choose and as an unparalleled gift of generosity and compassion.

You may also have concerns about customary funeral or memorial arrangements if you become a donor. However, organ and tissue donation does not interfere with traditional funeral plans, including those with open-casket viewings. In addition, your loved ones will not incur any costs simply because you are an organ donor.

Choosing to Give the Greatest Gift

Modern medicine, supported by ancient religious beliefs, provides each of us with an extraordinary opportunity to perform the supreme act of charity – to save another human being’s life.

Today, you can make a choice to give hope, healing and life – the greatest gift of all – by becoming an organ and tissue donor. More than 420 Delawareans– men, women and children of all ages – wait for the phone call that can mean the difference between life and death. We invite you to discuss this selfless decision with your religious leaders and family members. Choose to give the gift of life – place the donor designation on your driver’s license, learner's permit or state identification card. Sign Up Now!

Religious Leader Perspectives

“Many devout people believe that God is the creator of all life and has given us bodies which, in a sense, are on loan to enable us to do good. One of the greatest gifts we can give when our body is no longer animated is to pass on the gift of God to another child of God. Our gift helps them to continue giving.”

Bishop Anthony G. Bosco
Bishop Emeritus
Catholic Diocese of Greensburg


“In view of the wonderful advancements made in medical science concerning organ and tissue donation, God has shown favor in this area and I believe that He is pleased when we help to bring forth life and a better quality of life through donation.”

Bishop Ernest C. Morris, Sr. D.D.
Former President
Black Clergy of Philadelphia and Vicinity



“Anyone who saves one life . . . it is as if they have saved an entire world.”

Jewish Law Code
Mishnah,
Sanhedrin 4:5
Provided by Rabbi Robert Rubin
Congregation Beth T’fillah of Overbrook Park



"God calls on us to do unto others as we would have them do unto us. We can answer that call by deciding to be organ and tissue donor.”

Reverend Bonnie Camarda
President
Hispanic Clergy of Philadelphia and Vicinity