The narrower our ideas about whose bodies matter – who is our neighbor – the less likely we will be to help, love, or even see others. And with the body unacknowledged, it is easier to overlook the more permanent but more elusive soul. Every body is a testimony: we are made in God’s image. Our frailties reflect his commandment that we must love each other as he has loved us. When we marginalize our neighbors, we blot out that image and refuse the duty of that commandment.

Until the 1980s, newborn babies underwent surgery with no pain medication or anesthesia. Doctors assumed that they were too young to feel pain.