Archive for the ‘HHS Mandate’ Category

National Prayer Novena in response to HHS Mandate

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

Washington, DC — A national webcast on Wednesday night, February 15, will launch a national prayer campaign in response to the unjust mandate of President Obama’s HHS mandate, which violates the conscience and religious freedom of countless Americans.

The webcast and prayer effort have been organized by Priests for Life, the world’s largest Catholic pro-life ministry.

From 9 to 10 ET on Wednesday evening, people can join by phone or online to listen to experts like Congressman Chris Smith and Douglas Johnson, Federal Legislative Director for the National Right to Life Committee, explain exactly what the President has done and exactly what we can do to stop him.

Registration for the webcast is at priestsforlife.org/webcast/index.aspx.

Then, at the conclusion of the call, Father Frank will launch the prayer effort.

“We have composed a special novena prayer to be said from February 16 through the 24th, and it is available at PrayerCampaign.org,” Father Frank explained. “There will also be an additional prayer composed for each day, and posted on that prayer site. We urge individuals, families, schools, and Churches to join in this prayer effort and to let us know they are joining in by means of the form they will find at PrayerCampaign.org.

“This is a moment of profound significance, when we are defending the very principles for which martyrs died and our Founding Fathers established the nation. This is a moment of direct attack on our freedom of conscience and religion. Prayer is essential for us to know what to do, and to have the strength to do it,” Father Frank concluded.

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No Compromise: The Mandate Has to Go, Period.

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

Many have asked me whether I think that the President’s announced “accommodation” regarding the HHS mandate for health insurance coverage of abortion-inducing drugs, contraceptives, and sterilization is acceptable.

Absolutely not.

As many Catholics and non-Catholics point out, the principal problem is that the mandate is still in place. The President’s February 10 announcement changed none of that. What remains is that all employers — not just religious ones — have to provide health insurance for their employees, and all health insurance plans have to cover abortion-inducing drugs, contraceptives, and sterilization.

It’s a fiction to say that the insurer, not the employer, is now the one offering this coverage. It is an illusion to think there is any moral difference introduced by the February 10 “accommodation” of the Administration.

As Peggy Noonan wrote, “The short-term White House strategy is to confuse and obfuscate, to spread a thick web of untruths about the decision and let opponents exhaust themselves trying to fight from under the web.”

Simply put, freedom of conscience — which belongs not just to religious people but to every American — demands that people should “retain the right to provide, purchase, or enroll in health coverage that is consistent with their religious beliefs and moral convictions” (Respect for Rights of Conscience Act).

Apparently, more will be coming out from the Administration, during the year that it is giving to non-exempt religious groups to “adapt” to the mandate. But we don’t need a year, nor do we need a moment, to determine what we are going to do, or to “adapt” to the mandate. The mandate is unjust. You don’t adapt to injustice; you oppose it.

That’s why Priests for Life is launching a federal lawsuit against the Obama Administration to block the enforcement of this mandate on us, and to declare it unconstitutional.

That is also why we are garnering support for the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act (H.R. 1179, S. 1467).

This is why we are also helping to organize public rallies, protests, and acts of civil disobedience.

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 Church teaching about the specific practices at issue in this HHS mandate, we are particularly well-positioned to fight against this intrusion on the rights of conscience.

Moreover, we are convinced that the current mandate, if allowed to stand, paves the way for mandated coverage of abortion on demand, and we see no reason why those pushing for the mandate would not want that in the long run. If the HHS can add at any time to the list of “preventive services” for women, and argues that these services are cost-effective, how could they not argue for health insurance policies to cover abortion, as less expensive than childbirth?

As John Allen said, “There’s no room for compromise on this. The mandate has to go.”

Keep up with details at: PriestsForLife.org

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Priests for Life vs. HHS Lawsuit: Full Speed Ahead

Monday, February 13th, 2012

National Webcast and Prayer Effort Announced

New York, NY – Father Frank reiterated today that the lawsuit he announced last week against the HHS to block enforcement of the mandate requiring objectionable services to be included in health insurance is moving ahead at full speed.

“The so-called ‘accommodation’ announced on Friday by the President changes nothing,” Father Pavone explained. “The moral problem remains, the coercion remains, and therefore our legal challenge remains. We want the mandate rescinded, period.”

Priests for Life will release more information regarding its legal action this week. In the meantime, Priests for Life is organizing a national webcast for Wednesday night, Feb. 15, featuring Congressman Chris Smith as well as leaders of the National Right to Life Committee (David O’Steen, Ph.D., Executive Director, and Douglas Johnson, Federal Legislative Director) to discuss the Obama mandate and the action that can be taken. Charles LiMandri, the attorney for Priests for Life in regard to the federal lawsuit, will also be a presenter.

At the end of the webcast, Priests for Life will also launch a national novena of prayer, to last from Feb. 16 through the 24th. Churches and individuals are urged to participate, and more information will be available on the webcast. Sign up at priestsforlife.org/webcast.

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Update on the HHS Mandate Situation

Friday, February 10th, 2012

Well, the events of the last couple of days have been pretty hectic, with what we and many others have been doing in response to the Obama administration trying to force the payment of abortion-inducing drugs, contraception, and sterilization on those who object.

As you may have seen, we at Priests for Life have launched a federal lawsuit against the administration to block enforcement of this policy and have it declared unconstitutional.

Last night, I was with Sean Hannity, who invited a group of religious leaders to discuss this issue. We taped a special edition of Hannity which will air tonight (Feb 10) at 9pm ET. Tune in! One of the questions he asked us is whether we would be willing to go to jail rather than go along with this policy.

Then, the events of today, and the so-called “accommodation” by the Obama administration, have raised many questions.

But don’t be fooled. It isn’t a reversal and doesn’t solve the problem.

First of all, as Congressman Chris Smith points out, if an organization is paying a health insurer and then the insurer is paying for the abortion-inducing drugs, then we as an organization are still paying for them!

Secondly, religious freedom is not just for religious groups; it is for every American. This is not just a problem affecting Catholic or other religious entities. It affects everyone. Employers have consciences, even if their corporation isn’t a religious entity.

And health insurers have consciences, too. How does a requirement that they pay for abortion-inducing drugs respect their freedom of conscience?

We’re still going full speed ahead with our lawsuit. Stay tuned for more details, and please support our efforts with your prayers and donations!

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