"'Terri Schiavo is not terminally ill; she is a woman with cognitive disabilities,' he said March 21. 'This law ensures that the decision to discontinue her assisted feeding will be reviewed with full attention to her legal rights.'
"Washington Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick noted at a March 21 news conference that Pope John Paul II has stated that people considered in a 'vegetative state' still have the right to basic health care such as nutrition and hydration.
"'Deliberately removing water and food 'in order to hasten a patient's death would be a form of euthanasia, which is gravely wrong,' Cardinal McCarrick said.
"He said this also was the position of the Florida Catholic bishops in a Feb. 28 statement on the Schiavo case.
"'We join with them in praying that those who hold power over Terri Schindler Schiavo's fate will see that she "continues to receive nourishment, comfort and loving care,"' he said."