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Mennonite-owned wood manufacturer sues over contraception mandate
Christian Telegraph ^ | Dec 15, 2012 | Christian Telegraph

Posted on 12/15/2012 2:53:41 PM PST by Mrs. Don-o

Conestoga Wood Specialties president and CEO Anthony Hahn.
Photo via catholicnewsagency.com

Three Mennonite Christians who own a wood manufacturing company in Pennsylvania have filed a lawsuit challenging the federal contraception mandate for threatening their right to religious freedom, reports Catholic News Agency.

“Being told that we must provide a health plan that includes a provision that violates the Christian beliefs of our family and the Christian values that our company was founded on is deeply troubling,” said Anthony Hahn, president and CEO of Conestoga Wood Specialties Corporation.

“Forcing Americans to surrender long-standing, deeply-held principles in order to own and run a business is not merely troubling but unnecessary and unconstitutional,” he added.

Hahn is challenging a federal regulation that requires employers to offer health insurance plans that cover contraception, sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs. Conestoga would be required to comply with the mandate when its insurance plan renews on Jan. 1, 2013.

Dozens of lawsuits have been filed against the mandate by religious employers who argue that it forces them to violate their sincerely-held beliefs. The federal government has argued that businesses which are deemed “secular” do not have the constitutional right to freedom of religion.

On Dec. 4, attorneys with Independence Law Center filed a legal challenge in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on behalf of Conestoga’s founder Norman Hahn, and his sons Norman Lemar Hahn and Anthony Hahn, who manage the company.

A family business with some 950 full-time employees throughout the U.S., Conestoga is a manufacturer of wood cabinets, doors and other specialty products.

The Hahns have always sought to “operate Conestoga in a manner that reflects their sincerely held religious beliefs” as Mennonite Christians, the lawsuit says, noting that the company’s mission statement includes a commitment to “the highest ethical, moral, and Christian principles.”

The family believes “that their Mennonite faith prohibits them from separating their religious beliefs from their daily business practice,” the suit stresses.

Given their conviction that “God requires respect for the sanctity of human life,” the Hahns believe “it would be sinful and immoral for them to intentionally participate in, pay for, facilitate, or otherwise support any contraception with an abortifacient effect,” the legal challenge says.

The Hahns currently provide health insurance that does not include drugs such as Plan B and ella, which can kill a newly-conceived human embryo. Coverage of these drugs is required under the mandate.

The family is now asking the court for an injunction to block the enforcement of the mandate. Several other for-profit businesses have secured initial injunctions in similar lawsuits while their cases progress through the court system.

The Independence Law Center noted that Mennonites have faced a long history of religious discrimination and persecution, and many of them were attracted by the promise of religious freedom to settle in Pennsylvania in the early 1700s.

“People of faith should not be punished for making decisions according to the deepest convictions of that faith,” said attorney Charles W. Proctor III in a statement announcing the lawsuit.

“Americans should be free to honor God in the way they see fit whether at work or at home or at church,” added attorney Randall Wenger. “To ask us to do otherwise would show extreme disrespect to our freedom of conscience.”


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; US: Pennsylvania
KEYWORDS: christians; hhs; lawsuit; liberty; mennonites; obamacare; religiousliberty; tyranny
I am proud that Baptists, Lutherans, Presbyterians, and Mennonites (maybe others too?) have joined 45+ Catholic litigants in opposing the tyranny of the HHS Mandate.

There need to be much bigger community support for these people of faith. Are you in the industry? Buy Conestoga wood products (they sell only to industry professionals): they do cabinets, kitchens, doors, architectural accents, looks like very fine work.

http://www.conestogawood.com/

1 posted on 12/15/2012 2:53:51 PM PST by Mrs. Don-o
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To: Mrs. Don-o

Why does that goofy “separation of church and state” thingy always work for the commie ‘RATS in our so called “courts” but it never works for religious people?


2 posted on 12/15/2012 2:56:41 PM PST by FlingWingFlyer (It's not about the guns. It's about the control.)
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To: Mrs. Don-o

We have to find a way to overturn/repeal the entire bill.

I’m with you, glad to see people fighting it.


3 posted on 12/15/2012 2:58:59 PM PST by 2111USMC (aim small, miss small)
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To: Mrs. Don-o

We could do with more Mennonites and less muslims and atheists in this world.


4 posted on 12/15/2012 3:01:57 PM PST by mylife (The Roar Of The Masses Could Be Farts)
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To: Mrs. Don-o

Won’t do any good. The time our side would get a fair shake from the legal system passed eons ago. Now if you are not a queer or Communist you are wasting your money and time going to court. November 4, 2008 changed everything for the worse. November 6, 2012 affirmed it.


5 posted on 12/15/2012 3:04:57 PM PST by sport
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To: Mrs. Don-o

I often buy from Rehoboth ranch. http://www.rehobothranch.com/

Robert has fought the Gov long and hard on some of these assinine restrictions.
Alas the Gov shut down the dairy.

Whats his name? Fast Eddie Rendell shut down wonderful Amish Friday night dinners in PA with taxes and regulations.


6 posted on 12/15/2012 3:06:30 PM PST by mylife (The Roar Of The Masses Could Be Farts)
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To: 2111USMC

Neither repeal or overturn is going to happen. the Republicans want it to remain so they can have the issue to fool their sheep. The Democrats want it for the power it gives them.


7 posted on 12/15/2012 3:08:53 PM PST by sport
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To: Mrs. Don-o

BTTT and hooray!


8 posted on 12/15/2012 3:23:47 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Mrs. Don-o

The sad thing is that the Gov is squeezing these small independents with things like contraception that have noting to do with their business.

The big guys like Cargill and Monsanto are happy to play the money game and politics with the aholes in congress.


9 posted on 12/15/2012 3:29:02 PM PST by mylife (The Roar Of The Masses Could Be Farts)
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To: Mrs. Don-o

This lamb shank is great.

http://www.rehobothranch.com/index.php?page=shop.browse&category_id=4&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=70&vmcchk=1&Itemid=70


10 posted on 12/15/2012 3:31:38 PM PST by mylife (The Roar Of The Masses Could Be Farts)
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To: Mrs. Don-o

Hobby Lobby is doing the same thing. I hope many other large businesses will follow suit.


11 posted on 12/15/2012 3:34:58 PM PST by Drawsing (The fool shows his annoyance at once. The prudent man overlooks an insult. (Proverbs 12:16))
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I think Robert uses 6 kinds of clover in his pastures.
He produces a tremendous product and pays attention to detail from the earth to the processing.

But some bureaucrat in Washington that has never seen a farm says we cant sell fresh milk.

It’s BS


12 posted on 12/15/2012 3:36:12 PM PST by mylife (The Roar Of The Masses Could Be Farts)
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To: Mrs. Don-o; mgist; raptor22; victim soul; Isabel2010; Smokin' Joe; Michigander222; PJBankard; ...
+

Freep-mail me to get on or off my pro-life and Catholic List:

Add me / Remove me

Please ping me to note-worthy Pro-Life or Catholic threads, or other threads of general interest.

13 posted on 12/15/2012 3:41:16 PM PST by narses
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To: Mrs. Don-o; mgist; raptor22; victim soul; Isabel2010; Smokin' Joe; Michigander222; PJBankard; ...
+

Freep-mail me to get on or off my pro-life and Catholic List:

Add me / Remove me

Please ping me to note-worthy Pro-Life or Catholic threads, or other threads of general interest.

14 posted on 12/15/2012 3:41:37 PM PST by narses
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To: Drawsing

We need more big businesses to step up because the little guys are dying out here.

I know that’s a double edged sword for the big guys.
But there is room for all.

Room for quality and value

I always say, if a good green grocer, butcher, aor baked opened beside the super walmart they would get at least 10% of the bushiness from folks that were dissatisfied with Walmarts produce.

The problem for the little guy is fighting gov Bureaucracy and big company interests.


15 posted on 12/15/2012 3:42:50 PM PST by mylife (The Roar Of The Masses Could Be Farts)
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To: Mrs. Don-o

Thank God for the help of his people. LIEbertarians go to the closet, you first amendment anti-freedom, social Marxist cultural cleansing freaks.


16 posted on 12/15/2012 5:29:05 PM PST by SaraJohnson
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To: Mrs. Don-o

But, but, but, but, but right here on FR we keep being lectured that this contraception only concerns Catholics, that Protestants long ago became enlightened about it and that Catholics are only getting what they deserve.

Didn’t know Mennonites were Catholic. But, I guess they are. Stupid CatholicMennonites.


17 posted on 12/15/2012 5:45:00 PM PST by Houghton M.
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To: Mrs. Don-o

Can’t the Mennonites just take advantage of the loophole that Obama crafted to favor the Muslims?


18 posted on 12/15/2012 6:02:46 PM PST by The Duke
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To: The Duke

What loophole is that?


19 posted on 12/15/2012 6:07:41 PM PST by nascarnation (Baraq's economic policy: trickle up poverty)
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To: Mrs. Don-o

What land will our future generation have to move to for religious freedom?


20 posted on 12/15/2012 6:18:15 PM PST by LifeComesFirst (http://rw-rebirth.blogspot.com/)
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To: nascarnation
What loophole is that?

http://libertyandpride.com/muslims-exempt-from-obamacare/

21 posted on 12/15/2012 7:05:58 PM PST by The Duke
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To: FlingWingFlyer

Because the “tyranny ratchet” only goes in one direction.

Freedom seems to be rekindled only after all is lost and the explosion occurs.


22 posted on 12/15/2012 7:09:55 PM PST by ProtectOurFreedom
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To: FlingWingFlyer

23 posted on 12/15/2012 7:15:08 PM PST by ProtectOurFreedom
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To: The Duke

I don’t believe it. The only people that are exempt are ones not covered by the Social Security system which is basically Amish and Mennonites. Muslims are NOT exempt from the Social Security system and although they may not “believe” in insurance, they are not exempt from vehicle insurance laws in any state.

There will be a LOT of folks who become Mennonites, because they can have machinery which the Amish don’t allow.


24 posted on 12/16/2012 1:25:20 PM PST by nascarnation (Baraq's economic policy: trickle up poverty)
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