Teacher sues diocese after being fired for receiving IVF treatments

At teacher at a Catholic school in Indiana, USA, is suing the Catholic diocese after being fired for receiving in vitro fertilisation (IVF) treatments.

The teacher, Emily Herx, filed the suit because she was discriminated against after the school’s priest found out she had begun the IVF treatements.

IVF treatments are against Catholic Church teaching.

According to CNN, the school’s priest called Herx a “grave, immoral sinner”. He told her she should have kept quiet about such things because “some things are better left between the individual and God,” she said.

“I don’t think I was doing anything wrong.”

“I have never had any complaints about me as a teacher,” Herx said.

Responding, the diocese said it “views the core issue raised in this lawsuit as a challenge to the diocese’s right, as a religious employer, to make religious based decisions consistent with its religious standards on an impartial basis.”

In its statement, Fort Wayne-South Bend Indiana diocesan officials said that “the church promotes treatment of infertility through means that respect the right to life, the unity of marriage, and procreation brought about as the fruit of the conjugal act. There are other infertility treatments, such as in vitro fertilization, which are not morally licit according to Catholic teaching.”

The statement adds that teachers working in the diocese are required to “have a knowledge and respect for the Catholic faith, and abide by the tenets of the Catholic Church.”

Herx said she underwent her first in vitro fertilization treatment in March 2010, and immediately told her supervisor, the school’s principal.

“The first time she was made aware that my husband and I had to go through fertility treatments, she said, ‘You are in my prayers,’ ” Herx said.

“To me, that was support.”


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