Faith Leaders Unite for National Donor Sabbath

Donate Life Illinois urges faith leaders throughout Illinois to raise their collective voices, praise the benefits of organ and tissue donation and urge their members to give the gift of life by being organ and tissue donors during National Donor Sabbath, which will  be observed November 11-13.

Donation and transplantation professionals designate this special weekend each year—two weekends before the Thanksgiving season—to bring donation to the attention of faith leaders and their communities. During this time, Donate Life Illinois coalition members seek to educate faith communities about the ongoing need for organ, tissue and eye donors and to encourage people to register as donors.

Religious views on donation vary among denominations, but the vast majority—including all major religions such as Catholicism, Judaism, Islam and Hinduism—view organ and tissue donation as one of the highest forms of giving and a supreme gesture of human compassion. That’s because faith and hope—fundamental principles of nearly all religions—also are integral components of the donation and transplant process. From those who wait for organ and tissue transplants, to donors who one day hope to make a lifesaving difference, to donor families who can ease the pain of losing a loved one by knowing he or she gave life to others—all have faith in a greater good beyond themselves.

Donate Life Illinois encourages all Illinoisans to be a part of this special time of hope and thanksgiving by planning and participating in National Donor Sabbath activities and registering to be organ, tissue and eye donors in the Illinois Organ/Tissue Donor Registry.  This selfless act can give hope to nearly 5,000 Illinoisans on the organ transplant waiting list and thousands of others waiting for tissue and cornea transplants.

For more information on organ and tissue donation or to join the Illinois Organ/Tissue Donor Registry, visit DonateLifeIllinois.org. For information on how to plan a National Donor Sabbath program for your faith community members, e-mail Gift of Hope Organ & Tissue Donor Network at info@giftofhope.org or call 888/307-DON8 (3668).

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