The HHS Contraceptive Mandate Vs. The Catholic Church (The Battle Continues)
We are living in interesting times. It began recently with the Susan G. Komen and Planned Parenthood situation and now onto the Health and Human Services Contraception Mandate. It is truly amazing to simply sit on the sidelines as a Catholic Canadian and watch while the Americans fight over this basic Church teaching on the Sanctity of Life and Sexuality. Obviously, if it wasn’t clearly stated before by me, the whole Contraceptive Mandate is a great evil and is the quintessential attack of the secular world on the Church today. The world’s most powerful government has targeted not only the conservatives but also the entire Catholic Church. I follow on a daily basis what New Advent likes to report, and as of late, it is primarily reporting on news about the HHS Contraceptive Mandate. One story really stuck out to me yesterday and with the recent “accommodation” made by Obama today, I would like to discuss it in depth. I realize this has already been discussed by some other Catholic Bloggers, but I feel it needs to be spoken of again from a Team Orthodoxy perspective.
The Links for the main News stories are here:
To preface my thoughts on these articles, I would like to say that we are fighting two battles – coming back to my previous post on “Divide and Conquer”. The battles we are currently facing are The Battle for Credibility and The Battle for the Conscience. I would also like to say, though I am critical of the lack of action of certain Bishops, this is in no way an attack on the office of Bishop, the hierarchy of the church, the USCCB or CCCB, or any particular Bishop or priest. This is a general critique on the State of the Church.
In a world bombarded by stories of the Sexual Abuse Scandal in the Church, the Church is trying very hard to restore some credibility. The Fr. Robert Barron’s of this world cannot make enough DVDs on Catholicism to fix this; the world is not listening to him, nor the Catholic Church in general (and most certainly not if it’s coming from PBS). Why is the world refusing to listen? Because the majority of voices that should be speaking, and should have been speaking all along i.e. the Bishops, have been and continue to be silent, and the ones who should be silent, namely the mass media, are yelling from the rooftops that the Catholic Church is the enemy. It is a propaganda war, because the world has the bigger vehicle to promote their message, the Church has become the black spot on the immaculate page of human history (insert sarcasm). With their anti-life President Obama as their poster boy, that wolf in sheep’s clothing, who wins the hearts of the American people only to will their very destruction, the warhorse of anti-Catholicism continues to gallop, leaving many dead and wounded in it’s path – most especially women and children.
One of the most intriguing parts of the divide and conquer military tactic is that it can be used to turn the very people it states it supports against themselves. This is what the Obama Administration, and those who are fighting for the Contraceptive Mandate are peddling:
Article 1 states:
“It is our clear understanding from the administration that the president believes as we do, and the vast majority of the American women should have access to birth control,” Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., said pointing out that 15 percent of women use birth control for medical issues. “It’s medicine, and women deserve their medicine.”
Medicine is intended to heal and cure sickness and disease. Though this 15% would require Birth Control for Medical Issues, she does say that the “Vast majority” of American women should have access to this “medicine”. What is it curing for the majority, if only 15% are truly in need of it for medicinal purposes? What disease is this “medicine” healing, or even, dare I say, preventing?
I’d be kind of scared to be in a dark alley alone with that Senator. She’s a real piece of work! She’s not alone though. These Anti-Life leaders are having an all-out metaphorical Gang Bang on the Consciences of American Catholics.
In Article 2, the US Government officially stated today in their supposed “Accommodation” that:
“If a woman works for religious employers with objections to providing contraceptive services as part of its health plan, the religious employer will not be required to provide contraception coverage but her insurance company will be required to offer contraceptive care free of charge,”
Take note of the word, “care”.
“It’s time to tell Republicans ‘mind your own business,’” said Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J. ”Ideology should never be used to block women from getting the care they need to lead healthier lives.”
Healthier Lives? Caring for women? Really? Minus the destruction of an innocent human life in the womb, contraception has been known to have disastrous effects on women, such as causing permanent sterility, breast cancer, etc. Again, if human life is a disease, then yes, technically you’re a healthier human being. But LIFE IS NOT A DISEASE!
So the Democrats state they will “fight strongly” to keep the mandate in place. The main way they will fight this war will be to use their anti-life rhetoric to propagate the idea that Contraception actually aids in women’s health. Pray tell, what are the downsides to Artificial Contraception?
From Medical News Today:
“In the January issue of The Journal of Sexual Medicine, researchers have published a new investigation measuring sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG) before and after discontinuation of the oral contraceptive pill. The research concluded that women who used the oral contraceptive pill may be exposed to long-term problems from low values of “unbound” testosterone potentially leading to continuing sexual, metabolic, and mental health consequences.” (source:http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/35663.php)
According to Ditchthepill.org here are a list of proven side effects:
- Migraine headaches
- Breast Cancer
- Heart Disease
- Heart Attacks
- Blood Clots
- High Blood Pressure
- Uterine Cancer
- Post-Partum Depression
- Uterine Fibroids
- Unnecessary Hysterectomies
- Anxiety Disorders
The sad story is, those who are thinking objectively about the issue at hand (which is the mandating of the Catholic Church to pay for abortifacient and contraceptive drugs) see that it is directly in violation of their consciences, and goes against their fundamental rights to practice their religion. If the issue were simply based on this alone, they would still have a leg to stand on. From a health perspective, the Church is still protecting their employees from health problems. From a sociological perspective, I think Michael Brendan Dougherty and Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry from the Business Insider put it quite aptly. (Source:http://www.businessinsider.com/time-to-admit-it-the-church-has-always-been-right-on-birth-control-2012-2).
“The Church teaches that love, marriage, sex, and procreation are all things that belong together. That’s it. But it’s pretty important. And though the Church has been teaching this for 2,000 years, it’s probably never been as salient as today. Today’s injunctions against birth control were re-affirmed in a 1968 document by Pope Paul VI called Humanae Vitae. He warned of four results
If the widespread use of contraceptives was accepted:
1.General lowering of moral standards
2.A rise in infidelity, and illegitimacy
3.The reduction of women to objects used to satisfy men.
4.Government coercion in reproductive matters.
Does that sound familiar?
Because it sure sounds like what’s been happening for the past 40 years.”
They go on to say that:
“Is this all due to the Pill? Of course not. But the idea that widely-available contraception hasn’t led to dramatic societal change, or that this change has been exclusively to the good, is a much sillier notion than anything the Catholic Church teaches.”
Though nothing the Church teaches has been silly, in the last 50 years, we’ve seen the opposite of correct moral teaching given by clergy vis. The Winnipeg statement by Bishops in Canada in 1968 against Humanae Vitae. The Pope and the Magisterium have not been silent on this matter at all, quite the opposite. Unfortunately, to get a message from the Pope’s desk to the local congregation’s ears seem to be a harder task than flying to the moon. It seems to stop on Bishops’ desks.
The American and Canadian Catholic clergy since Roe V. Wade have stood relatively silent in comparison to the 53 Million children that have been slaughtered at the hands of Abortionists. But now the fight has come to the American Bishops’ front lawn, aiming right at the pocket books of these Institutions, and their consciences. It must be stated however that the Bishops of the USCCB are much better now than their hippy predecessors in terms of living conscientiously. In fairness, those Flower-Power Clergy of the 70’s allowed for the mess and left our current day Bishops to clean it up. But now, the battle for the conscience has come to the front door of these Bishops and, thanks be to God, our Bishops are now starting to act in accordance with their calling and call out evil where they see it.
Sadly, in a poll released on Tuesday (ARTICLE 3), we learn that:
“When asked by Public Policy Polling (PPP) if employers should be required to provide workers with health-care plans covering contraception at no cost, 58 percent of Catholic respondents agreed, compared with 55 percent of all respondents. And when the question was narrowed to whether colleges and hospitals with religious affiliations should be included in the requirement, Catholics continued to express more support than the general public. Fifty-two percent of Catholics said they should be held to the mandate, compared with 49 percent overall.”
On a side note, I can almost guarantee these “Catholics” they surveyed are not regular Mass attendees and do not appeal to any sort of fidelity to the Church on any moral matters. Frankly, I’d like to see a survey done on those who participated. I highly doubt the PPP would survey daily mass attendants, but most likely perused the campuses of the likes of Catholic University of America or Notre Dame to produce the results they themselves wanted. That aside, it still shows a fundamental truth that Catholics in the West are generally uncatechized. Poorly formed Catholics will equate to poor politics.
This is the Battle for the Conscience, since the majority of “Catholics” in the West are walking around with poorly formed consciences in general. How does the USCCB appeal to the laity for support when they haven’t been formed? Truth be told, MTV has formed them where the local church dropped the ball. The good Catholics who are living the faith in and out of season, who dare I say, the majority have taken care of their own personal catechesis, are the ones stepping up and causing a ruckus over this. The Catholics who regularly receive our Blessed Lord in Holy Communion and enter into the Sacrament of Reconciliation are the ones who are going to fight this to the shedding of their blood. Why? Because they love God and desire that He be honored and loved in return.
Even some of our Protestant friends are behind us in this. Lifesite news tells us that:
“Dr. Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC), told LifeSiteNews.com “we will not comply” with the Dept. of Health and Human Services’ mandate requiring religious institutions to cover abortifacient products such as Plan B, Ella, and the IUD.”(http://www.lifesitenews.com/southern-baptist-leader-we-will-not-comply-with-hhs-mandate.html)
The problem is the Battle for Credibility has worked in favour of the Mandate. Due to that fact, the battle for conscience on the national scale takes a back seat to the battle for credibility, because people will not listen to you unless you are a legitimate source. And how can a Church who “hides pedophilia and rapes little boys” as the mass media likes to push, stand to tell us that we cannot use “contraception” because its “evil”? Though the Church has way more to bring to the table, including 2000 years of beautiful history, what has occurred within the last 50 years on the part of clergy will stain the pages of Church history for years to come, similarly to things like the Inquisitions and the Bad Crusades. Nevertheless, even if some of Her members have fallen, the Church can and will proclaim the truth in the face of unspeakable evil. Like the great martyrs, the Church stands like Daniel in the Lion’s Den to guard the truth no matter how much the world tries to distort it or tell us She is wrong. This is truly the greatest battle of our time.
The Bride of Christ must become a warrior in these latter times in order to crush the head of the serpent and the anti-christs of this age. I am proud of people like Mother Angelica and EWTN, The Catholic Register, Priests for Life, and Stand-True Ministries, who have sued Kathleen Sebelius of Health and Human Services and the Obama Administration because of this Mandate. “The gates of Hell shall not prevail”, but how those gates will try to, and with all their might. Like at the Battle of Lepanto, let us arm ourselves with the Rosary, and faithfully assist at Mass, and pray, whether we’re American or not, that the Church will rise from this low state, as the glorified Bride of Christ, and show who She really is, and may she, in being authentically who She is, which means we ourselves are authentically who we are, transform the culture and be in word and deed as our Blessed Lord says “the light of the world, and salt of the earth”.
In the Immaculata,
Posted on February 10, 2012, in abortion, Apologetics, Cardinals, Catholic, Catholic Clergy, chastity, Church Corruption and Renewal, contraception, Current Events, Love, marriage, Orthodoxy, pro-life and tagged Accommodation, Business Insider, Catholic, CCCB, Contraception, EWTN, HHS Contraceptive Mandate, Kathleen Sebellius, New Advent, Obama, Obama Care, Orthodoxy, Stand True, The Catholic Register, Timothy Dolan, Truth, USCCB, Winnipeg Statement. Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.