On June 1st, the Pope received in the Vatican the new ambassador of the United States to the Holy See, Mary Ann Glendon.
Addressing the new ambassador in English, among other considerations, the Holy Father expressed his appreciation for:
“…the efforts of so many of your fellow citizens and government leaders to ensure legal protection for God’s gift of life from conception to natural death, …”
I wonder what would be the appreciation of such efforts by the people of Iraq or Afghanistan, or by US soldiers stationed in these countries, for that matter. But maybe the concept of “natural death” has a deep theological meaning that baffles my ignorant self.