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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Father Denis Wilde, OSA, associate director of Priests for Life, was among six people arrested today during a peaceful protest outside the White House.
Father Wilde was representing Priests for Life at an organized protest of the HHS contraception mandate that violates the First Amendment guarantee of freedom of religion. Priests for Life yesterday filed a lawsuit against the Obama Administration that seeks to permanently block the implementation of the mandate because it imposes clear violations of conscience upon any American citizens who morally object to abortion and contraception.
Father Wilde and the other protesters, including the Rev. Pat Mahoney of the Christian Defense Coalition, were cited for “Failure to obey a lawful order” as they knelt in prayer in front of the White House. They each paid a $100 fine and were released from custody.
“Occupy Wall Street protesters have been occupying federal property for months, but when we kneel in prayer, the police are called in and we are arrested,” Father Wilde said. “We knew that was the risk when we gathered today, and we will do it again regardless of the risk. What people of faith – of every faith – need to do now is stand with us.”
Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, said the New York-based organization remains committed to battling the HHS mandate because it forces Americans to become morally entangled in practices they find objectionable.
“As an organization of Catholic clergy, as a corporation that employs 60 people of various religious backgrounds, and as a ministry whose very purpose is to protect and promote the pro-life teaching about the specific practices at issue in the HHS mandate, we are particularly well-positioned to fight against this intrusion of conscience,” Father Pavone said.
To see the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York, on Wednesday, click here: http://www.priestsforlife.org/hhsmandate/priests-for-life-v-sebelius.pdf
Priests for Life is the nation's largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.