Are The Bishops The Problem?

Following the decision of the Obama Administration's HHS department to dispense with religious liberty and force religious groups to violate their consciences, it seems the Bishops are roused from their slumber. It seems. I am not so sure. They may still be asleep.

Many Bishops have been speaking out and calling for Catholics and Christians of all stripes to contact the Obama administration and demand a revision to the conscience clause in the mandate. If that is their argument, they have already lost the argument. They might win the battle, either through the courts or the election year largess of the emperor, but the war is lost.

In order to win the argument they must change the argument. In order to change and win the argument, the battle, and ultimately the war, the Bishops need to understand that they were wrong, completely wrong. They were wrong when they supported the health care bill in the first place.

Back in 2009, the Bishops ...

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  1. AMEN! In my opinion, we've lost the will to fight, given that 98% of Catholics contracept. This is the consquences of a watered down faith that we've had since the Second Vatican Council, given that so many Catholics were given no or so little Catechesis, depending on the diocese. We need to go back to basics. Obama said, in a round about way, "Divide and Conquer".

    When Humanae Vitae, by Pope Paul VI, came out in 1968, many wicked clergy in the Church worked against it. Many seminaries rejected this document. Those seminaries are no longer in existence. So shall you reap, so shall you sow!

    The clergy from a generation ago, are largely to blame for this big fiasco that we're in right now. They hold the majority of the responsibility. Come on priests, be a pastor! Come on Bishops, be a shepherd! Do your job! I'll be accused of "fundamentalism", or an old "basket case". The Pharisees and Scribes called Jesus the prince of demons.

  2. The history of Pennsylvania is deeply rooted in a belief in the protection of religious freedom. William Penn sought a safe haven not just for Quakers, but for all religions and envisioned Pennsylvania as a "Holy Experiment" where all people of faith could freely practice their beliefs. Prior to the founding of Pennsylvania, Quakers in England were faced with a situation not unlike that faced by Catholics today due to the HHS ruling/mandate. The Quaker Act of 1662 made it illegal to refuse to take the Oath of Allegiance to King and country. Additionally, those refusing to take the oath were not allowed to hold secret meetings. Since the Quakers believed it wrong to take an oath, this law, while not directly banning their faith, did effectively ensure that it could not be freely practiced.

    Today, due to the mandate issued by HHS, the Catholic Church is faced with a similar challenge. There are only two methods to adhere to the law. The first would be to comply and provide health insurance plans that contain coverage for procedures that are at odds with our religious beliefs. This is not acceptable. The second method of adherence to the law would require us to minister, through our Catholic hospitals and health agencies, exclusively to Catholics. This would violate the example of Christ, and as such, is also unacceptable. Therefore we can not comply with this mandate, and we will not. Essentially, the Catholic Church - and other religions - are being told that they can have their faith, but not freely exercise it. This is a gross violation of our 1st Amendment rights, and although we may not agree on every issue, we must stand united in defense of freedom to worship AND practice our faith. If the government is allowed the power to limit the practice of our faith on these specific issues, what is to say that this, or any other future administration, will not seek to further limit us in regards to other aspects of our faith? We must joint in solidarity and protest now, or to paraphrase Lutheran pastor Martin Niemoller, there will eventually be no one left to speak out later.


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