This Donum Vitae II is not intended to abolish the previous one, but to confront the various questions of bioethics and biotechnology that are posed today, and that were still unthinkable back then.He points out that although Donum Vitae has been around for twenty years, it is scarcely known.
Magister highlights Archbishop Amato's comment referring to the authority of the documents:
The study of such delicate topics is the competency of our congregation, which then submits its work to the pope. And therefore the opinions on these topics that come from other ecclesiastical institutions or personalities – as respectable as these may be – cannot have the authoritativeness that the mass media sometimes seem to want to attribute to them.Magister points out that the "opinions of ecclesiastical persons" include in particular the comments of Cardinal Martini on bioethical questions in the April 2006 L'Espresso and his comments in Il Sole 24 Ore last month on euthanasia.
The second forthcoming document is on Natural Law which has not been addressed previously as the subject of a document in its own right. On this subject, the Archbishop says:
A Catholic, for example, cannot consent to legislation that introduces marriage between two persons of the same sex; this is contrary to biblical revelation and to the natural law itself. [...] The pope often cites natural law in his catecheses. Our congregation is preparing something on this topic, and to that end has already consulted all of the Catholic universities. Everyone’s responses are very encouraging, even those from the professors considered the most ‘difficult’.The full text of the interview with Archbishop Amato (in Italian) was published in the Catholic newspaper Avvenire on 28 January 2007.