Skip to comments.Letter from Archbishop John G. Vlazny on the matter of freedom of conscience and decisions by HHS
Posted on 01/29/2012 1:34:07 PM PST by Salvation
Letter January 25, 2012 from Archbishop John G. Vlazny on the matter of freedom of conscience and decisions by HHSDear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:
It is important for you to know that the federal government has just dealt a heavy blow to the Catholic population and to the millions more who are served by the Catholic faithful.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced last week that almost all employers,including Catholic employers, will be forced to offer their employees health coverage that includes sterilization, abortion-inducing drugs, and contraception. Almost all health insurers will be forced to include those services in the health policies they write. And almost all individuals will be forced to buy that coverage as a part of their policies.
By this ruling, the Administration has cast aside the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, denying to Catholics our Nations first and most fundamental freedom, that of religious liberty. Unless the rule is overturned, we Catholics will be compelled to violate our consciences or drop health coverage for our employees (and suffer the penalties for doing so). The Administrations sole concession was to give our institutions one year to comply.
We cannot and will not comply with this unjust law. People of faith cannot be made second class citizens. We are already joined by our brothers and sisters of all faiths and many others of good will in this important effort to regain our religious freedom.
In generations past, the Church has always been able to count on the faithful to stand up and protect her sacred rights and duties. I hope and trust she can count on this generation of Catholics to do the same. Our children and grandchildren deserve nothing less.
And therefore, I would ask of you two things. First, as a community of faith we must commit ourselves to prayer and fasting that wisdom and justice may prevail, and religious liberty may be restored. Without God, we can do nothing; with God, nothing is impossible. Second, I recommend visitingwww.usccb.org/conscience, to learn more about this severe assault on religious liberty, and how to contact Congress in support of legislation that would reverse the Administrations decision.
Thank you for all you do to build the Church and society.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Most Reverend John G. Vlazny
Archbishop of Portland in Oregon
Speak honestly: abortion is the killing of tiny human beings in the womb Denver bishop
Bishop [Daniel Jenky] Blasts Secularist Intolerance, Calls For Assertive Action to Defend Church
(Pittsburgh Bishop Zubik comments:) HHS delays rule on contraceptive coverage
Dolan: Natural law, not religious preference, dictates all life sacred
Religious leaders blast HHS over contraception mandate
Mandated Contraception, Sterilization: Caesar Demands Church Violate Conscience
OBAMAS CONTEMPT FOR RELIGIOUS LIBERTY (mandates coverage of sterilization & contraception)
Implications of Obama Admin move to force Cath hospitals to provide contraception and sterilizations
Catholic doctors group launches petition against contraception mandate
Contraception mandate tramples religious freedom, US bishops say
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And the State marches on——trying to eradicate God from worldview with force of law. We better wake up and get involved in a grass roots effort to put back God and our God-given rights before we find ourselves in Bonhoeffer’s shoes.
Pretty amazing. Better than I would have expected from Vlasney. He deserves to be complemented on this one.
I see that you are the keeper of the prolife and Catholic lists.
Please pass this on: Little Bella Santorum is hospitalized, and Rick and Karen need urgent prayers for their baby. See thread.
Bella needs prayers!
(Sorry to hijack this thread, but I don’t know how to ping.)
“We cannot and will not comply with this unjust law.”
Man oh man, I sure hope the Church holds fast on this one, and in a unified manner. I think this is one case where the Government will “blink first” if the Church sticks to its guns.
I’m very glad to see this. The one I posted the other day was read by our parish priest this morning after the Gospel. Needs to be spread everywhere in the country, now!
**and in a unified manner**
I’m collecting the names of the Bishops, so if you hear or see anything about your local, please post it or let me know.
Emails sent to Boehner, Brown and Portman. No, not holding my breath, but we have to try.
I think the Bishops had this written FOR them - that seems very close to what was in our bulletin this morning too - in the Diocese of Dallas. It’s TIME the Bishops speak out like Archbishop Timothy Dolan in NY - it is war and we Catholics MUST stand up. Heck - every one of faith must stand up to this shredding of the first amendment!
Bishop David Ricken of the Diocese of Green Bay Wisconsin also sent the letter (or a very similar one) to parish priests to read this weekend.
He seems to be a good conservative bishop.
Unfortunately, our local parish priest declined to read it at today’s masses.
Bishop Vlazny was my English teacher at Quigley North Seminary 1965/66. My history teacher that year was Father James Keleher who late became Bishop of Kansas City.
It may have been some kind of a template that they could use.
Obama won the overall religious vote, 52 percent to 46 percent, reversing President George W. Bushs 51 percent to 48 percent values voter victory over Democratic challenger Sen. John Kerry in 2004. Obama also won the Catholic vote, persuaded young evangelical voters to choose him and began to squeeze shut the so-called God gap yawning between religious Democrats and Republicans during the Bush era.
How will the roughly 9.1 million evangelical Christians who voted for Obama vote in the next election? Will Obama's actions compel the 31.2 million evangelicals who didn't vote in the 2008 election to vote next time?
Amen, Facebook this and NYer’s Fr Rutler article. Sent to friends and family.
To bad they are waking up so late in the game to the evil that is on the move. Maybe it’s not to late... Maybe the Bishops should have read the bill before backing it? Or they could have ask me if it was bad and unconstitutional law. It would have made thing much easier.
I can remember when the USCCB committee interviewed candidate Jimmy Carter and came out proclaiming, "He's with us on everything but abortion." The message then was clear: all the "social justice" things outweighed abortion. So Catholics voted for Carter.
My personal prediction of how this is going to turn out: hospitals, schools and colleges will "disaffiliate" from the Church. Only churches, which are exempt from the Obama requirements, will remain officially "Catholic." All other institutions will go the way many formerly Catholic colleges have already gone. That way the Church saves face. No officially Catholic organization will be paying for contraception, but all formerly Catholic organizations will go along quietly. And the Bishops will have the socialized medicine they wanted so badly.