Monday, January 30, 2012

Here Comes Everybody ... on HHS

"Here comes everybody," author James Joyce once said in describing the Catholic Church.

The response to the January 20 announcement by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) mandating private health insurance programs to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives (including those that can induce an abortion) has brought new life to the expression. Everybody is weighing in on this.

First, the bishops:
Letters, statements and other messages also came from:

Archbishop Gregory Aymond of New Orleans; Cardinal-designate Edwin O'Brien, administrator of Baltimore; Archbishop Roger Scwietz of Anchorage, Alaska; Bishop Richard Malone of Portland, Maine; Bishop Richard Pates of Des Moines, Iowa; Cardinal DiNardo; Bishop Thomas Doran of Rockford, Illinois; Bishop Kevin Rhoades of Fort Wayne-South Bend, Indiana; Bishop Paul Loverde of Arlington (who also issued a joint letter with Bishop Francis DiLorenzo of Richmond); Bishop William Murphy of Rockville Centre, New York; Archbishop Jose Gomez and Cardinal Roger Mahony on Los Angeles; all of the bishops of Michigan (courtesy of the Michigan Catholic Conference); Archbishop John Nienstedt of St. Paul-Minneapolis; Bishop Patrick McGrath of San Jose, California; Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City-St. Joseph, Missouri; Bishop David Kagan of Bismark, North Dakota; Bishop Thomas Tobin of Providence, Rhode Island; Bishop Peter Christensen of Superior, Wisconsin; Bishop Michael Jackels of Wichita, Kansas; Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix, Arizona; Bishop W. Francis Malooly of Wilmington, Delaware; Bishop Walker Nickless of Sioux City, Iowa; Bishop Thomas Paprocki of Springfield, Illinois; Bishop John Noonan of Orlando, Florida; Bishop Anthony Taylor of Little Rock, Arkansas; Bishop Alexander Sample of Marquette, Michigan; Bishop Michael Burbidge of Raleigh, North Carolina; Archbishop John Myers of Newark, New Jersey; Bishop Joseph McFadden of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; Archbishop Jerome Listecki of Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Bishop David O'Connell of Trenton, New Jersey; Archbishop John Vlazny of Portland, Oregon; Bishop Lawrence Brandt of Greensburg, Pennsylvania; Bishop Robert McManus of Worcester, Massachusetts; Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, Kentucky; Bishop Samuel Aquila of Fargo, North Dakota; Bishop Felipe Estevez of St. Augustine, Florida; Bishop Frederick Campbell of Columbus, Ohio; Bishop Joseph Bambera of Scranton, Pennsylvania; Archbishop Dennis Schnurr of Cincinnati; Bishop Matthew Clark of Rochester, New York; Bishop Gregory Hartmayer of Savannah, Georgia; Bishop George Coleman of Fall River, Massachusetts; Bishop Glen John Provost of Lake Charles, Louisiana; Bishop Roger Foys of Covington, Kentucky; Bishop Gerald Barnes of San Bernardino, California; Bishop Robert Morlino of Madison, Wisconsin; Bishop Michael Driscoll of Boise, Idaho; Bishop Larry Silva of Honolulu, Hawaii; Archbishop Thomas Wenski of Miami; Bishop Michael Sheriden of Colorado Springs; Bishop Robert Gruss of Rapid City, South Dakota; Bishop Kevin Vann of Fort Worth, Texas; Archbishop Jerome Hanus of Dubuque, Iowa; Bishop Robert Lynch of St. Petersburg, Florida; Bishop Richard Lennon of Cleveland; Bishop John Gaydos of Jefferson City, Missouri; Bishop Joe Vasquez of Austin, Texas; Bishop Frank Dewane of Venice, Florida; BIshop Terry LaValley of Ogdensburg, New York; Bishop Armando Ochoa, administrator of El Paso, Texas; and Bishop Timothy McDonnell of Springfield, Massachusetts.

And not just bishops, an array of other organizations, as well as both Catholic and secular media have weighed in on the topic:
Elizabeth Scalia at The Anchoress blog encapsulates all of this by noting that the silver lining of this rule has been how it's brought about a so much unity in an often fractious Church.

A true "here comes everybody" moment.

Note: Catholics wishing to take additional action on this matter can go here for more information and an action alert.


CD said...

It is such a gift to be Catholic at any time, but particularly at this moment.

CGunty said...

And I saw this editorial in the Washington Examiner, that I could have sworn would have been just as appropriate had it been in a Catholic newspaper. All the more powerful, since it came from a secular newspaper in the Capital City. The headline: "Obamacare regulation tramples on religious freedom."

ericr said...

As a Catholic, I am aggrieved, but not totally surprised at this egregious decision by the Obama administration. I strongly support the USCCB position against it. I am sure that the US Supreme Court will strike it down. In the meantime, we should write letters to our congressmen and senators voicing our opposition.

Phamfam1 said...

I appreciate the numerous comments on this subject, but just commenting is not enough.
I pray that God grant us wisdom, like He did to Salomon, and give us leaders who can lead us into UNITED, CONCRETE and DECISIVE ACTIONS against this evil act of the HHS such as:
- Organizing PRAYER SESSIONS in parishes across the U.S.,
- Organizing MASSIVE DEMONSTRATIONS (just like the ones of the Hispanic communities in Los Angeles a few years ago),
- Making united responses from religious leaders (including non-Catholics) to DISOBEY this unfair and evil rule (just like the decision of the leaders of the Los Angeles Archdiocese to disobey the rule forbidding aiding undocumented aliens a few years ago).
- Taking LEGAL ACTIONS against this rule that tramples religious freedom, and so on.
May God bless the Church and bless America.
Thank you.

MOP said...

Yes we have much to do including calling our senators and congressmen and HHS to keep the heat on. I agree that we need our religious institutions to have their rightful exemption. But what about the devout catholic employers out there who will have no such exemption? Can the USCCB speak out for them too? These usually small business employers are going to be put into the same situation of going against their conscience and be mandated to purchase policies for their employees that cover sterilizations and abortifacients. Do they not also deserve an exemption?