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-Catholic Priests Choose to Disobey DC Circuit Court Contraceptive Ruling

by Dr. D ~ November 19th, 2014

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A pro-life group of Catholic priests,  Priests for Life, has chosen civil disobedience rather than compliance to a court ruling to provide birth control and abortifacients through the insurance plans for its employees. Here’s the story from Christianity Today:

The United States DC Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a claim from Priests for Life that it should be exempt from the Obamacare legislation on grounds of religious freedom. A three-judge panel said that the regulations "do not impose a substantial burden on the Plaintiffs’ religious exercise."

A statement from the national director of Priests of Life and Gospel of Life Ministries, Father Frank Pavone, denounced the judgement as "absurd".

"Priests for Life will not obey the mandate! Not today. Not tomorrow. Now ever!" he said.

Father Pavone also told the Washington Times that "To ask a group of priests to cooperate in the government’s plan to expand access to birth control and abortion-inducing drugs is about as contrary to religious freedom as you can get."

<Read the whole article>

Response:The DC Circuit decision is the worst so far in the cases challenging the Obamacare HHS Mandate. The DC Circuit is considered the 2nd highest court in the land but SCOTUS has already ruled on this matter and released a couple of businesses from obeying the HHS Mandate for religious reasons in the famed ‘Hobby Lobby’ case.

The Obama administration has responded with an opt out to the mandate through filing a set of paper explaining ones wish for non-compliance for religious reasons. But still the mandated contraceptive coverage would be provided but supposedly in those cases ‘for free’ by the insurance companies. However, nearly all of the religious organizations that object to the Mandate do not wish to recognize the legality of it by filing.

In any case, if insurance companies end up providing contraceptives ‘for free’ then the cost of it all will eventually be spread out among every plan the companies provide. So in the long run the religious organizations who object would end up paying for at least part of the provided contraceptive and abortifacient coverage. The naivety and the business inexperience of the president and members of his administration is glaring in this case if they actually believe that the insurance companies will pay for this coverage out of their own pockets.

Obviously this case will be appealed to the Supreme Court. In the meantime, it will be interesting to see how the administration responds to the civil disobedience of the Catholic priests.            *Top

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