Categories: Guidelines, The Faith

Donation of Organs

Although nothing in the Orthodox tradition requires the faithful to donate their organs to others, never-the-less, this practice may be considered an act of love, and as such is encouraged.  The decision to donate a duplicate organ, such as a kidney, while the donor is living, requires much consideration and should be made in consultation with medical professionals, the spouse and one’s spiritual father. The donation of an organ from a deceased person is also an act of love that helps to make possible for the recipient a longer, fuller life. Such donations are acceptable if the deceased donor had willed such action, or if surviving relatives permit it providing that it was in harmony with the desires of the deceased. Such actions can be approved as an expression of love and if they express the self-determination of the donor. In all cases, respect for the body of the donor should be maintained. The death of the donor shall not be hastened in order to harvest organs for transplantation to another person.