31 Oct 2015 News Vatican No comments

Pope Francis slams Priests and Bishops who Criticized Salvadoran Archbishop Oscar Romero

500 Salvadorans had visited Pope Francis yesterday to thank him for beatifying the martyred Archbishop Oscar Romero, one of the most important figures in Latin …

Read more

26 Nov 2015 Middle East - Africa News Comments (1)

Video: Watch Pope Francis meet with clergy, religious and seminarians in Kenya

Pope Francis meets with Kenyan Clergy, Religious and Seminarians. Click the "Play" button to watch.

Read more

01 Feb 2016 News Vatican No comments

Pope: Mercy is the ultimate and supreme act by which God comes to meet us

Pope Francis delivered the homily at Mass in St. Peter's Basilica on Sunday morning. The central theme of his homily focused on the weak and the vulnerable, say…

Read more

26 Dec 2014 Q&A Comments (2)

May we join the priest in praying the Eucharistic Prayer?

Full Question During Sunday Mass our priest invited the congregation to join him in praying aloud the Eucharistic Prayer. Is this permitted? Answe…

Read more

24 Dec 2014 Q&A No comments

Am I a Catholic if I received private instruction instead of going through RCIA?

Full Question I was raised Baptist, and when I entered the Catholic Church I did not go through the RCIA program. My priest privately instructed me and the…

Read more

04 Sep 2015 Europe News No comments

Retired bishop assaulted by passenger on a train in Ireland

Bishop Emeritus of Kerry said to be very shaken by the incident Bishop Emeritus Bill Murphy of Kerry was punched in the face last month by a drunken passenge…

Read more

21 Jan 2016 Q&A No comments

How do we sanctify the Lord's Day (Sunday and holy days)?

According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church'   Sanctifying Sundays and holy days requires a common effort. Every Christian should avoid making un…

Read more

05 May 2016 Vatican Comments (1)

Individuals are more generous than governments over immigration, says Cardinal Nichols

The cardinal said political leaders need to look at what we gain from migration, as well as the problems we confront Cardinal Vincent Nichols has said that man…

Read more

26 Apr 2016 Articles No comments

Did Peter Have a Wife?

Apparently so, since he had a mother-in-law. Customarily the two go together. Sometimes they even remain together, both staying in a fellow’s home. This h…

Read more
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

US bishops urge compromise in contraceptive mandate case

The bishops said the rights of people with religious objections to contraception should be protected

A September 9 letter from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) officials to the Department of Health and Human Services stressed that a compromise could effectively be reached in the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive requirement.

The letter, in response to the US government’s request for comments on a proposal mandating contraceptive coverage, echoed the Supreme Court’s May 16 decision in Zubik vs Burwell — the combined lawsuit of the Little Sisters of the Poor, Priests for Life, and several other religious groups, that said providing contraception coverage to employees through their insurance plans violated their religious beliefs.

The court sent the cases back to the lower courts saying religious employers and the government should be “afforded an opportunity to arrive at an approach going forward that accommodates petitioners’ religious exercise while at the same time ensuring that women covered by petitioners’ health plans receive full and equal health coverage, including contraceptive coverage."

For this accommodation to happen, the USCCB letter stressed that “any government-mandated contraceptive coverage must be truly independent of petitioners and their plans," meaning the coverage should be offered by a separate communication and with a different policy, enrolment process, insurance card and payment source.

The letter, signed by members of the USCCB’s general counsel, also said such coverage should not be automatic in order to protect the conscience rights of people with religious objections to contraception and sterilisation coverage.

It said that another look at the HHS contraceptive requirement provides an opportunity for the government to “bring to an end years of church-state litigation and, in turn, to avoid a legacy of ongoing and unnecessary conflict with substantial portions of the religious community in the United States."

It also noted that the Supreme Court had urged the litigants “to resolve this matter amicably" which the letter said they had done by “describing, in good faith and in great detail, a way to reach an amicable resolution."

But these groups cannot change the regulations, the letter added, stressing that only the government could and should do this instead of ignoring “the sincerely held and repeatedly stated religious objections of a substantial minority of our civil society."


Leave a Reply

  1. most read post
  2. Most Commented
  3. Choose Categories