Loading
US bishops urge HHS to respect consciences

.- Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, the U.S. bishops’ pro-life committee chairman, urged the Health and Human Services Department to respect religious beliefs as it considers finalizing a mandate that would require health insurance providers to cover contraception.

“Catholic organizations committed to their moral and religious teaching will have no choice but to stop providing health care and other services to the needy who are not Catholic, or stop providing health coverage to their own employees,” said Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston.

“This is an intolerable dilemma, and either choice will mean reduced access to health care.”

The Health and Human Services department announced federal rules on Aug. 1 that could require nearly all new health plans, including those of most religious agencies, to cover all government-approved methods of contraception as well as surgical sterilization.

The mandate comes with a religious exemption that narrowly defines religious employers as those who employ and serve members of their own religion for the purpose of teaching religious doctrine.

“Jesus and the apostles would not be ‘religious enough’ under such a test, as they served and healed people of different religions,” Cardinal DiNardo said on the eve of a hearing by the U.S. House of Representatives on conscience protections.

In a Nov. 1 letter to subcommittee chairman Rep. Joseph Pitts (R-Penn.), the cardinal outlined his support for the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act and other moves to address potential problems with health care reform.

He noted that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act “excluded longstanding protections for conscience rights on abortion, by failing to apply the annual Hyde/Weldon amendment to the billions of dollars newly appropriated by the Act.”

“And it created new open-ended mandates for ‘essential health benefits’ and ‘preventive services’ to be included in almost all private health plans, without any provision for individuals or institutions that may have a moral or religious objection to particular items or procedures,” he added.

Cardinal DiNardo stressed that a lack of conscience protections would ultimately lead to more harm than good—not only because less people would receive the basic health care that religious groups provide but because the fundamental right to religious freedom would be violated.

“Is the drive to maximize contraceptive coverage, even among those who do not want it, such an urgent national priority that it transcends concerns about religious liberty, our nation’s ‘First Freedom,’ as well as concerns about women’s health and about access to basic health care for men and women alike?” he asked.


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea
The tombs of the early Christians
Missionaries of Africa, called "the White Fathers"
Italian youth give testimony after mission to Peru
Interview with Iraqi Ambassador to the Holy See on the persecution of Christians
New book 'The Vatican unknown'
A Look at India from Rome
3D Church mapping
#PAUSEforPeace Initiative
Dedicating art to San Juan de la Cruz
A state without territory elects new government
The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Aug
30

Liturgical Calendar

August 30, 2014

Saturday of the Twenty-first Week in Ordinary Time

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 25:14-30

Gospel
Date
08/30/14
08/29/14
08/28/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: 1 Cor 1: 26-31
Gospel:: Mt 25: 14-30

Saint of the Day

St. Jeanne Jugan »

Saint
Date
08/30/14
08/28/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 25:14-30

Homily
Date
08/30/14
08/29/14
08/28/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: