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Pro-life award goes to hospital staff
Matron and nurses recognised for taking long-term care of rape victimStaff accept their award from Bishop Gracias of Bombay
- ucanews.com reporter, Mumbai
- April 27, 2011
Auxiliary Bishop Agnelo Gracias of Bombay presented the award at a function at the King Edward Memorial Hospital in Mumbai on April 25.
The prelateÂ said yesterdayÂ that the archdiocese wanted to honor the matron and nurses for â€śtheir exemplary care and concernâ€ť for Aruna Shanbaug, a rape victim.
The annual Sister M. Annunciata RGS Golden Jubilee Award was started five years ago to recognize an individual or institution that contributes to the pro-life cause, the bishop said.
The award normally consists of a silver plaque. â€śThis is the first time cash was given as a special case,â€ť he added.
The archdiocese gave 100,000 rupees (US$2,220) andÂ Anthony Sequeira, a Catholic physician, donated 300,000 rupees to the hospital staff.
Bishop Gracias told the nurses that the archdiocese applauds their stance that life is Godâ€™s gift and every human is â€śunique and precious in Godâ€™s eyes.â€ť
The prelate rejected growing demand for the right to die with dignity. â€śWe have no right to die â€“ neither with dignity nor indignity. After God has brought us to life, we have a right to live with dignity and we die with serenity, surrendering our life to God at the proper moment,â€ť he said.
The bishop went to Shanbaugâ€™s room with a group. Enid Miranda, a physician and member of the Archdiocesan Human Life Committee, said the group prayed silently as the bishop placed a rose by the patientâ€™s pillow.
Sequeira, 76,Â said his gesture was only a â€śa drop in the oceanâ€ť to thank the nurses and doctors for taking care of Shanbaug â€śin such exemplary way.â€ť
Nirmala Rajgopal, the matron, said her people are â€śdeeply touchedâ€ť by the award and donation. â€śAruna Shanbaug, our sister is a gift from God and we will love and take care of her till she breathes her last in the hospital,â€ť she added.
Rajgopal said they would use the interest money from the award as a scholarship to train a deserving nurse every year.
Aruna Shanbaug was a nurse at the hospital. She was sexually assaulted by a hospital ward boy in 1973. He tried to strangle her with a dog chain which cut the blood and oxygen supply to her brain.
Hospital's pro-life stance applauded