Today’s Pro-life Reflection: Future of Humanity

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“Although faith provides special light and strength, this question arises in every human conscience which seeks the truth and which cares about the future of humanity” – EV 101 

Reflection: Jesus, the Bible, and the Church teach that stealing is wrong. Therefore, do the laws that prohibit stealing impose a religious belief on the rest of us? Of course not. But some argue that a law protecting the unborn would impose religion. They think freedom of religion should allow child-killing.

Prayer: Lord, you have blessed human conscience with the ability to perceive that killing children is wrong. Increase the moral strength of your people, that this evil may end. Amen.

Waiting For Obama On Religious Liberty – Priests for Life is ready to reach a solution, as the Supreme Court directed.

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The Supreme Court could have settled the question of whether federal bureaucrats may issue punishing, perhaps incapacitating, fines to faith-based organizations that refuse to participate in what we believe to be evil. Instead, the justices sent all of the cases in Zubik back to the four federal circuit courts that heard them first. The high court also asked those appeals courts to step away momentarily and give the two sides time to resolve the case on their own.

What will the administration do now? The White House’s latest “accommodation” proposal for religious nonprofit charities, schools and other organizations did not satisfy the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The proposal and each of its previous versions required faith-based groups seeking an exemption from the mandate to submit a form to an authority. Without this initiating action, abortion-causing drugs would not be made available to our employees. The basic requirement that we be complicit in the provision of abortifacients and other life-denying drugs, devices and procedures was a part of every government proposal. When we responded that we are forbidden by our faith to take part in this scheme—the government effectively retorted, “So what?

But both sides in Zubik have told the Supreme Court that a solution is theoretically possible.

For instance, the administration could, for once, actually listen to the Zubik petitioners—and to the scores of other faith-based groups that have lawsuits pending in lower courts—and propose a solution that does not hijack our health-insurance plans. The administration could, for example, make abortifacient/contraceptive coverage available to religious nonprofit employees through the ObamaCare exchanges, Title X (the federal program devoted to family-planning services), or separate arrangements with our own or another insurance company. In other words, don’t involve us, or the health-insurance plan we offer our employees, in the effort to expand coverage of abortion-inducing drugs.

The administration might be tempted to come up with a proposal that satisfies only those groups that have third-party insurance coverage—and not those that self-insure. This wouldn’t be acceptable, because self-insurers underwrite their own health-insurance plans and are, practically speaking, their own insurance companies. A government “accommodation” that offered as its only option a requirement that insurers of religious nonprofit groups offer the employees of those groups separate plans for abortifacients and contraceptives would still force self-insured religious groups to violate their faith.

Read the entire article in The Wall Street Journal: http://www.wsj.com/articles/waiting-for-obama-on-religious-liberty-1465163311

Today’s Pro-life Reflection: God is with us

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“And they shall name him Emmanuel, a name that means ‘God is with us'” Matthew 1:23.

Reflection: In the midst of the abortion tragedy, the Church does not point fingers of condemnation. Rather, the Church extends hands of compassion and help, to lift up out of despair those who are tempted to abort their children. The Church informs her people of the many alternatives to abortion, and says “I am with you, and will enable you to say yes to life.”

Prayer: Lord, so many are tempted to abort because they feel alone. May we reach out to them, that they may know that we and you are with them. Amen

Supreme Court Order in Priests for Life vs. HHS (Part of Zubik vs. Burwell).. Further Comments from Priests for Life

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“We are encouraged by today’s development. The Supreme Court could have ruled against us, but evidently the Obama Administration did not succeed in persuading them to do so. A split Court could also have let the lower court’s negative ruling stand, but again, they did not see fit to do that. Instead, the Supreme Court, upon receiving further briefings, vacated the lower court rulings, and offered the parties an opportunity to work out a mutually acceptable solution in the lower courts, that will both allow the government to pursue its objectives and allow us to practice our faith. We are committed to continuing that process in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit.”

 

Read the entire Statement from Priests for Life: http://www.priestsforlife.org/pressreleases/5715-supreme-court-order-in-priests-for-life-vs-hhs

Teleconference to Discuss Priests for Life vs. HHS, Government Brief, and Upcoming Election

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Today, April 20, a further brief is submitted to the Court by Priests for Life and the other petitioners, and tomorrow’s press conference will talk about their reply to the government.

Media and pro-life leaders are welcome to join by calling 712-432-0700, and entering Pin number 619300.

 

Read the entire press release: http://www.priestsforlife.org/pressreleases/5684-teleconference-to-discuss-priests-for-life-vs-hhs-government-brief-and-upcoming-election

Lead Nonprofit Case against HHS Mandate Moves Forward

Washington, DC – Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, announced today that its case is moving forward in the federal courts to challenge the HHS mandate. The fourth such case to be introduced, back at the start of 2012, the Priests for Life lawsuit will now be appealed to the full body of judges of the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit, where a three-judge panel issued an adverse ruling in November. “We are determined to go all the way to the Supreme Court, which we are convinced we will need to do in due time. But what we are doing now is the next step in that process. Ultimately, no matter how the courts rule, we will not obey the mandate, no matter what the consequences.”

The Court has consolidated the case brought by the Archdiocese of Washington (which case includes Catholic University of America, Thomas Aquinas College, and other plaintiffs) with that of Priests for Life. This consolidated case is at the lead of the religious non-profit cases against the mandate.

Lead attorney Robert Muise of the American Freedom Law Center explained, “Priests for Life is requesting that the D.C. Circuit rehear the case en banc (full court) because the panel’s decision directly conflicts with the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Hobby Lobby.  Just as in Hobby Lobby, Priests for Life believes that if it complies with the regulation, it will be facilitating immoral conduct in violation of its Catholic faith.  And just as in Hobby Lobby, if Priests for Life does not comply, it will pay a heavy price.  That is the very definition of an unlawful burden on religious exercise.  And should the full court refuse to rehear the case, we will seek review in the Supreme Court.  This battle is not over.”

The filing of the case with the Court will take place today or tomorrow. Fr. Pavone added, “We have been receiving statements of support from priests across the nation indicating that they stand with us in this battle for religious freedom. They know that this is not only a matter of the HHS mandate, but of the principle behind everything they do each day: the freedom of the Church to exist and function in society according to her beliefs.”

To keep up with the Priests for Life case and the arguments and talking points involved, see www.IStandWithPFL.com.

Novena to Reverse HHS Mandate — Day 5 #HHSMandate #IStandWithPFL

Lord God,
You are Light, and in you there is no darkness.
You sent your Son Jesus Christ
As the Light of the World,
And you sent your Holy Spirit
To enlighten the hearts and minds of all.

Lord, we pray today
That we may always experience
The light of your truth,
Informing our conscience
Of what is right and what is wrong.

We pray that this light
Will reach all of our fellow citizens
That they may recognize the dangers of evil
Which are often hidden along their path.

Open the eyes and minds of all
To the threats that currently exist
To our religious freedom,
To the health and well-being of women,
And to the good of our nation.

Give us the grace not only to recognize evil,
But also to reject it with the unwavering strength
That comes from you.

We pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Novena to Reverse the HHS Mandate — Day 4 #HHSMandate #IStandWithPFL

Lord Jesus Christ,
Ruler of all nations,
You gave Your apostles the command
To preach the Gospel to the ends of the earth,
And promised that You would be with them all days,
Even until the end of the world.

After Your Ascension,
They went forth to preach Your word
And You confirmed with signs and wonders
That You were working through them.

When they were told by the authorities of their day
Not to speak Your name anymore,
And were even arrested and scourged,
They boldly declared,
“We must obey God rather than men!”

Lord Jesus,
You continue to proclaim Your Word
in your Church today.
Give us the same clarity, courage, and determination
That Your apostles had,
That we may not allow any obstacle or earthly power
To intimidate us into silence or compromise.

Grant that our highest loyalty may always and only be to You,
Who live and reign forever and ever. Amen.

Our Government Pays no Heed to the Constitution

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

STATEN ISLAND, NY – Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, issued the following statement today following the U.S. Supreme Court decision upholding the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

“The Supreme Court today officially declared that our current government pays no heed to the Constitution.  Neither the President, nor Congress, nor the Supreme Court appears willing to protect life or liberty.

“If ever there were a time in history when the American people needed to be informed voters on Election Day, this is it.”

Priests for Life filed a lawsuit in February against the Health and Human Services mandate that all employers provide contraception to their employees free of charge. That lawsuit will continue.

“Priests for Life will remain vigilant on the issue of contraception,” Father Pavone said. “The mandate is a brazen attack on our religious liberty. Today’s ruling on Obamacare was a setback, but it is not the end of the battle.”

Priests for Life applauds latest lawsuit against HHS mandate

Number of lawsuits, including that of Priests for Life, now Nine

New York, NY — Father Frank hailed the newest lawsuit — the ninth to be filed against the Health and Human Services mandate on contraception, sterilization and abortifacients — as another sign that opposition to this unjust mandate has just begun.

O’Brien vs. Sebelius is a lawsuit brought by an individual or private employer not affiliated with any religious institution or organization.

“We are very happy that a private business owner recognizes that this mandate affects virtually all health care plans and all employers, across the board and across the country,” Father Pavone said. “In our own lawsuit, Priests for Life vs. Sebelius, which was the fourth of the nine filed so far, Priests for Life is opposing this mandate as employers, not as a religious group. Religious freedom is not a right just of religious groups; it’s a right of every American.”

Attorney Charles LiMandri filed the Priests for Life suit Feb. 15 in Brooklyn Federal Court. The suit seeks injunctive relief from the HHS rules – first on behalf of Priests for Life, and then extending universally since all organizations and companies will be affected by the tyrannical HHS decree.

Fr. Pavone observed, “Priests for Life is fighting this mandate on all fronts: mobilizing the Churches, educating the public through the media, supporting legislative solutions, organizing nationwide rallies for religious freedom to take place this Friday in over 100 cities, and being among the first to challenge the mandate in Court. We are grateful for Cardinal Dolan’s recent remarks pointing to the importance of the lawsuits as perhaps the best way of solving this problem.”

See here for the full text of the Priests for Life lawsuit.

To read a summary of all nine lawsuits currently pending, visit: priestsforlife.org/hhsmandate/hhs-lawsuits.pdf