Pontifical Academy for Life

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The Pontifical Academy for Life is a catholic international pro-life organisation.

With his Motu Proprio "Vitae Mysterium" of February 11, 1994, John Paul II instituted the Pontifical Academy for Life. Its objectives are the study, information and formation on the principal problems of biomedicine and of law, relative to the promotion and defense of life, above all in the direct relation that they have with Christian morality and the directives of the Church's Magisterium. To achieve these objectives, the "Vitae Mysterium" Foundation was instituted in October 1994.

After the death of its first president, Prof. Jerome Lejeune in April 1994, the academy has been and is headed by Chilean Dr. Juan de Dios Vial Correa, who is assisted by a vice president, Bishop Elio Sgreccia, secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Family, and by a Board of Directors of five academicians named by the pope.

Seventy members named by the pope, who represent different branches of biomedical sciences and those which are closely linked with problems concerning the promotion and defense of life, belong to the academy. There are also three "ad honorem" members and members through correspondence who work in institutes and centers of study on the culture of life. The Board of Directors names a secretary who, under the president's direction, coordinates the organization of the academy's work.