In vitro fertilization is a process whereby conception takes place outside of the marital act. Consequences of IVF include the destruction of embryos not selected for implantation in the uterus and embryos left frozen with no regard for their inherent dignity. Reproductive assistance for couples facing infertility must provide unconditional respect for the human life throughout the process and honor the God-given design and union of the procreative and unitive aspects of the marital act. Any act which does not uphold these principles is immoral.
“When the marital act of sexual intercourse is not able to attain its procreative purpose, assistance that does not separate the unitive and procreative ends of the act, and does not substitute for the marital act itself, may be used to help married couples conceive.” —USCCB, Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services, 5th ed. (2009), n. 38.
Reproductive Technology (Evaluation & Treatment of Infertility) Guidelines for Catholic Couples
In Vitro Fertilization: The Human Cost