We live in a world that is driven on gift economy, which is the idea that valuables are given with an implicit agreement for future reward for the giver. This idea often pervades our personal relationships from parent-child to romantic to friends. We often give in the expectation of receiving. That is not how God designed relationships.
In the case of Alfie, the question should not be "do we stop invasive care on a terminally ill toddler?" Rather, it ought to be, "do we want to be a society that stops invasive care on a terminally ill toddler because we think his life is not worth living or do we want to be a society that stops invasive care on a terminally ill toddler because his life is worth living but we recognize that our technologies cannot save him and because we respect his dignity and worth, we are going to stop invasive care because we want him to be comfortable as his body shuts down?"
Science can purify religion from error and superstition; religion can purify science from idolatry and false absolutes. Each can draw the other into a wider world, a world in which both can flourish. - St. Pope John Paul II
"The task of medicine is to care even when it cannot cure."
When the chance for authentic service comes around, do we stop to help or do we pass it by?
Nothing and no one can completely fill that God-shaped hole in our heart, not even our spouse. Learning to be satisfied alone is essential for a healthy, happy relationship.
We are each surrounded by a communion of saints, living and deceased, in our daily lives. We are never fighting the battle alone, however much it may feel like it.