President’s Letter Summer 2022

Dear CMA Members and Friends,

Per our CMA Mission — forming and supporting current and future physicians to live and promote the principles of the Catholic Faith in the science and practice of medicine — I am delighted to announce the successful completion of the 10th annual Medical Student and Resident Bootcamp held at Ave Maria University June 12-19. Dr. Frank McNesby and his committee have dedicated 10 years to providing education and formation to Catholic medical students through the Catholic Medical Association.

As has become the norm, this year’s variety of talks and student-physician interactions were invigorating and energizing. A number of the students shared with me a repeated and salient theme of how much they learned intellectually, spiritually, and through hands-on applications within the week. They stressed how the nuanced cluster of experiences and mentoring stirred hope by opening and deepening their vision of how to be a faithful Catholic physician.

The Leadership Training Meeting for CMA members was also held at the end of the same week, overlapping with similar outcomes of faith, practice, and intellectual challenges in medicine. Drs. Paul and Amber Day, who had for a year diligently worked on this conference, not only offered CME education but also a better grasp of leadership within our association.

Both meetings culminated in a phenomenal keynote address by Ismael Hernandez, President of the Freedom & Virtue Institute. Hernandez focused our lens on “Commonality Training” instead of “Diversity Training” — and his idea certainly deserves attention given its core Catholic thread of forging solidarity via what we all have in common as humans.

The commonality of which Hernandez spoke, of course, extends beyond our unique physical characteristics and into the realm of our shared humanity. Moreover, it extends to the unborn because we recognize the common humanity of each unborn child. We in CMA know the intrinsic evil of taking an innocent life, which is why CMA has long advocated for protecting unborn children who are at risk for abortion. We believe strongly in supporting new mothers who believe they have no other choice but abortion. For this reason, we applaud the decision of the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade. The decision of the Justices voting for the majority opinion is evidence of the growing scientific and logical support for the recognition of the unborn as a person.  As medical professionals, we are satisfied to know that advances in medicine, which clearly indicate life from the moment of conception, have been considered in this decision. I want to thank each of my colleagues in medicine around the country and the world whose research and dedication to their practice helped to make this day possible.

As we state in our mission, in CMA we form and support medical students through practicing physicians. We therefore place a high value on our Bootcamp and Leadership Training Meeting. We promote our Catholic principles in the science and practice of medicine. CMA stands at the point where faith and reason intersect. Unlike most secular medical organizations which focus only on the science, we have a greater universal view of our patients because we recognize and honor the spiritual dimension that takes place in every human interaction. Sure, we review studies and we follow the medical evidence where it leads us with a critical eye. But we also recognize the individual dignity within each human person because each one is made in the image of God. The combination of the two is what makes CMA unique, and sets us apart from organizations like the AMA, AAP, and AAFP.

I thank you for continuing to make a much needed Catholic difference as a member of the Catholic Medical Association.

God Bless,

Craig L. Treptow, M.D.