SACRAMENTO, Mar. 12, 2001 ( – An embryo adoption program, which LifeSite reported on in September 1999, has gained international attention. The Snowflake Embryo Adoption Program matches couples who want children with embryos “left over” from fertility treatments, which would otherwise be destroyed or abandoned to scientific experimentation. England’s Daily Telegraph and Canada’s National Post reported on the adoption agency today, reporting that at least seven babies have been born as a result of the program thus far. The agency has matched 50 pairs of adopting parents and 47 pairs of genetic parents, thus allowing for the transfer of the “ownership” of the embryos.

Margaret Somerville of McGill University’s Centre for Medicine, Ethics and the Law told the National Post the project “makes us stop and think about what we’re doing … and that we should be doing it in such a way so that we have the least amount of wastage.” She says it is interesting to think about a program like this one, which is essentially adoption at the earliest stages of life, at the same time as scientists talk about creating embryos for the sole purpose of harvesting their stem cells for research. “It is such a different lens to look at this through,” she said.

The Snowflake program was launched by Ron Stoddart, executive director for Christian Adoption and Family Services. The agency has the respect of many in the pro-life movement since, as Mr. Stoddart explained to LifeSite, it does not encourage in vitro fertilization but only offers those embryos already created a good home, in place of destruction or indefinite storage.

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