I may have a couple of questions here but it's basically the same subject.

My first question: does the Catholic Church see any moral goodness in having a baby through In vitro fertilization (IVF)? Even though there is let's say 17 embryos frozen still but the couple bring one new life and cares for that life(nothing we can do about it). Can we say that God brings something good out of something bad like this(talking about new life as good) or this is just not the case since the whole case is just wrong?

Romans 8:28(New International Version)

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

The other question is why the Catholic Chuch doesn't talk about iVF in higher urgency. Let's say Pope should mention something about it in every conversation with media because from the perspective of the Church this is just such an evil. Does the silence have anything to do with

"John 8:11" (New International Version).

"No one, sir," she said. "Then neither do I condemn you,"Jesus declared. "Go now and leave your life of sin."

  • Well there are people in the Catholic Church who address this and similar questions with great urgency (Cardinal Burke is good at focusing on these sorts of questions); there are also others who believe that those sorts of questions are better addressed once people understand the fundamental goodness of God and His actions through the Church. What exactly do you mean when you ask about the Catholic Church talking about the subject? May 24, 2016 at 15:19
  • @MattGutting, I mean I rarely hear catholic representatives talking about IVF in the news. No headlines anywhere.
    – Grasper
    May 24, 2016 at 15:21
  • @Grasper See the LifeSiteNews stories tagged with IVF. The most recent one they ran involving a Catholic representative is "Interview with Vatican official: Will advancements in IVF ever lead to acceptance by the Church?."
    – Geremia
    May 24, 2016 at 16:02
  • 1
    Yeah, it depends on who you call a "Catholic representative" and where you look. Whether someone appears in what might be called "mainstream media" (e.g. CNN, NBC, BBC, etc) depends on whether the editors of the outlet in question want to publicize that viewpoint just as much as on whether the speaker does. May 24, 2016 at 16:37

2 Answers 2


It is a good when a new person comes into existence; God still creates a rational soul out of nothing even for those conceived as a result of sin.

But it is never moral to use evil means

  • in the case of IVF:
    • depriving a child of his or her right to be conceived in an act of marital love
    • masturbation to obtain semen
    • killing many people by subjecting them to harsh living conditions (Petri dish) when their proper place for their age is in a woman's womb
      A high fraction of those conceived with IVF do not survive because of the harsh living conditions, so many ova have to be fertilized for there to be a chance of one surviving long enough to be implanted in the woman's womb.

to achieve a good end:

  • bringing a new life into existence.

The authoritative Magisterial source on IVF is Donum Vitae, a 1987 document from the CDF. It says that even if masturbation and grave danger to the life of the embryo could be avoided, IVF is still intrinsically immoral because it deprives the child of his God-given right to be procreated in an act of marital love. Look at section A.1, “Why must human procreation take place in a marriage?”

For more information on this, see the discussion on IVF in Health Care Ethics: A Theological Analysis by Benedict Ashley, O.P.
("Artificial Human Reproduction" on p. 86 of the PDF or §9.2 "Reproductive Technologies" of the EPUB)

There are moral, more successful alternatives to IVF, such as Dr. Hilger's NaProTECHNOLOGY. You can find a NaPro doctor here. See also The NaProTechnology Revolution: Unleashing the Power in a Woman's Cycle and associated website.

  • FYI, the authoritative Magisterial source source is Donum Vitae, a 1987 document from the CDF. Note that even if masturbation and grave danger to the life of the embryo could be avoided, IVF is still intrinsically immoral, because it deprives the child of his God-given right to be procreated in an act of marital love. Look at sections A.1, “Why must human procreation take place in a marriage?” and B.4 on homologous artificial fertilization. May 24, 2016 at 17:57
  • @AthanasiusOfAlex thank you. That was also mentioned in the LSN article I linked to in my comment above.
    – Geremia
    May 24, 2016 at 18:00
  • In normal situations, a person born through IVF, would not otherwise be born - the parents being otherwise barren, usually. So the options to that person were not to be born by IVF or born through an act of marital love, but rather the options were to be be born via IVF or not to be born at all. May 25, 2016 at 7:40
  • @MichaelVincent There are other options, such as NaPro. Even those who are barren have a chance of conceiving; look at just about every woman in Holy Scripture: Sarah, Rachel, Hannah, Elizabeth, et al. These godly women never did anything immoral despite the great crosses of infertility they had to bear.
    – Geremia
    May 25, 2016 at 17:35
  • Fair point, @Geremia - I wasn't including supernatural events in my considerations. May 26, 2016 at 8:56

It's worth noting that even though IVF is a bad thing, this has no spiritual implications for people conceived in such a way. God is a master of making lemonade from lemons (Romans 8:28).

In fact, if you trace the genealogies of Jesus, you'll find that in the genealogy according to Matthew, Jesus is said to be descended from Solomon, and in the genealogy according to Luke, Jesus is said to be descended from Nathan. Both are probably true, but in either case, Jesus would be descended from David and Bathsheba, the couple that should have never been a thing. Lust, adultery and murder all went into that union but out of it eventually came Jesus.

The message is that regardless of your history, ancestory, conception, the kinds of things that people focus on and worry about, God has great things planned for you.

  • 1
    Your concern for such people is commendable and, I think, addressed with appropriate sensitivity. However, unfortunately, this site being a strict Q&A format and not a discussion forum, this answer does not fit since it doesn't directly address the question. May 24, 2016 at 19:42

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