The full statement

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops issued the following statement late Friday, Feb. 10.

The Catholic bishops have long supported access to life-affirming healthcare for all, and the conscience rights of everyone involved in the complex process of providing that healthcare. That is why we raised two serious objections to the “preventive services” regulation issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in August 2011. 

First, we objected to the rule forcing private health plans — nationwide, by the stroke of a bureaucrat’s pen—to cover sterilization and contraception, including drugs that may cause abortion. All the other mandated “preventive services” prevent disease, and pregnancy is not a disease. Moreover, forcing plans to cover abortifacients violates existing federal conscience laws. Therefore, we called for the rescission of the mandate altogether.

Second, we explained that the mandate would impose a burden of unprecedented reach and severity on the consciences of those who consider such “services” immoral: insurers forced to write policies including this coverage; employers and schools forced to sponsor and subsidize the coverage; and individual employees and students forced to pay premiums for the coverage. We therefore urged HHS, if it insisted on keeping the mandate, to provide a conscience exemption for all of these stakeholders—not just the extremely small subset of “religious employers” that HHS proposed to exempt initially.

Today, the President has done two things.

First, he has decided to retain HHS’s nationwide mandate of insurance coverage of sterilization and contraception, including some abortifacients. This is both unsupported in the law and remains a grave moral concern. We cannot fail to reiterate this, even as so many would focus exclusively on the question of religious liberty.

Second, the President has announced some changes in how that mandate will be administered, which is still unclear in its details. As far as we can tell at this point, the change appears to have the following basic contours:

•It would still mandate that all insurers must include coverage for the objectionable services in all the policies they would write. At this point, it would appear that self-insuring religious employers, and religious insurance companies, are not exempt from this mandate.

•It would allow non-profit, religious employers to declare that they do not offer such coverage. But the employee and insurer may separately agree to add that coverage. The employee would not have to pay any additional amount to obtain this coverage, and the coverage would be provided as a part of the employer’s policy, not as a separate rider.

•Finally, we are told that the one-year extension on the effective date (from August 1, 2012 to August 1, 2013) is available to any non-profit religious employer who desires it, without any government application or approval process.

These changes require careful moral analysis, and moreover, appear subject to some measure of change. But we note at the outset that the lack of clear protection for key stakeholders—for self-insured religious employers; for religious and secular for-profit employers; for secular non-profit employers; for religious insurers; and for individuals—is unacceptable and must be corrected. And in the case where the employee and insurer agree to add the objectionable coverage, that coverage is still provided as a part of the objecting employer’s plan, financed in the same way as the rest of the coverage offered by the objecting employer. This, too, raises serious moral concerns.

We just received information about this proposal for the first time this morning; we were not consulted in advance. Some information we have is in writing and some is oral. We will, of course, continue to press for the greatest conscience protection we can secure from the Executive Branch. But stepping away from the particulars, we note that today’s proposal continues to involve needless government intrusion in the internal governance of religious institutions, and to threaten government coercion of religious people and groups to violate their most deeply held convictions. In a nation dedicated to religious liberty as its first and founding principle, we should not be limited to negotiating within these parameters. The only complete solution to this religious liberty problem is for HHS to rescind the mandate of these objectionable services.

We will therefore continue—with no less vigor, no less sense of urgency—our efforts to correct this problem through the other two branches of government. For example, we renew our call on Congress to pass, and the Administration to sign, the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act. And we renew our call to the Catholic faithful, and to all our fellow Americans, to join together in this effort to protect religious liberty and freedom of conscience for all.



Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 12:59 AM By Dan
“We just received information about this proposal for the first time this morning; we were not consulted in advance.” This just about says it all, doesn’t it?

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 3:35 AM By Doc Mugwump
Amen! Thank you USCCB for listening to the urgent exhortations of Pope Benedict (*who lived through the Nazi occupation of his own homeland which took away all religious freedom etc) and for listening to faithful Catholics who can no longer tolerate the apostacy which runs rampant within the US Catholic Church. Stay strong.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 4:42 AM By Neil C
Thank you for your strong and vocal stance against this administrations attack on our liberty and our faith.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 5:50 AM By Juergensen
The Church is the Body of Christ (CCC 1368). Therefore, the attack on the Church by Obama is an attack on Christ Himself, making Obama an antichrist, one of “many antichrists [who] have come; therefore we know that it is the last hour” (1 John 2:18). What does this say of those “Catholics” who voted for Obama? Worse, what does this say of those “Catholics” who with forked tongues mislead others into voting for Obama?

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 5:55 AM By Joe
The problem is that you are dealing with an immoral president. He is unable to see why this is immoral to Catholics.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 5:56 AM By Gabriel Espinosa 
Thank you USCCB… You’ve finally awoken from your slumber.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 5:57 AM By DC
I wonder what Cardinal Mahoney would have done if he were still the Bishop? I know–ho hum, just another day.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 6:05 AM By Sandra
Sr. Carol Keenan was in the middle of this “accomodation”. The USCCB must get rid of her and put a true Catholic at the helm of the CHA.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 6:28 AM By 4unborn
President Obama’s “accommodation” makes it easier for religious employers to rationalize and violate their consciences. The cost will be buried in other premiums. There is no free lunch! Contraceptives and abortifacients will still be obtained through one’s employment with religious employers. Unless religious employers are completely exempt, continue to state unequivocally, “We cannot and will not obey!”

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 6:32 AM By respectlife
Thank you USCCB and thank you God for our church leaders who are standing up against evil. This will be the generation of many saints in our church. If we lose religious freedom we lose the battle of freedom as we know it.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 8:05 AM By mrpkguy
How many of those Catholics who failed to check out the then presidential candidate’s record and voted for him the last election, will have amnesia again this November? The adage “a tiger doesn’t change his spots” should now be glaringly apparent to all who have seen Obama’s true colors.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 8:11 AM By Life Lady
Okay, so the day has come when we would be asked to stand for the Church, or cave in and accept the socialism of this administration. The rubber meets the road here, the line has been drawn, etc. For us Catholics the line has been drawn in the sand, and either we stand with the bishops, as long as they are vigorously standing for what are the rights of the Church and the Faithful in the USA, or we fall by the wayside and let the cares of the world take The Word from us. Only our own prayerful resistence to Obama-nation will save us. Yesterday my priest at St. Anne’s said “as we prepare for Lent, we must examine our own prayer life, and it must deepen as we prepare for Easter”. That holds true in this fight, also. We must deepen our prayer lives, with prayer and sacrifice. Recall that Jesus, as he was casting out a demon, told the apostles that only fasting and prayer could rid the poor afflicted soul of the demon that possessed him. As we prepare for Lent, we must resolve to pray more, deepen our relationship with Jesus, as a personal effort can do, and not just give lip service to our recitation of our prayers. We must fast with our prayers, and sacrifice, so that we can bolster our bishops in their efforts, and pray for the Holy Father. We know that only by prayer and fasting can we cast out the evil that has taken our country. Our Lord has given us the means, now it is up to us to take this cross up and do it.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 8:19 AM By Catherine
Excellent words Doc Mugwump, Juergensen and Sandra! United we stand! Divided we fall! The above statement from the bishops, “Some information we have is in writing and some is oral.” Yes, that statement is very true, not in regards to the mandate, but in regards to our obedience to Christ. There is remedy and solution that has been there for, “well over two thousand years!” Some had forgotten this. “Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the Traditions which you have learned, whether by word, or by epistle. Now Our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God and our Father, who hath loved us and hath given us everlasting consolation, and good hope in grace.”….Thessalonians 2:15-16

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 9:10 AM By Maryanne Leonard
Archbishop Dolan, soon-to-be Cardinal Dolan, is the best thing that ever happened to the USCCB.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 9:20 AM By pete
I hope the Bishops see the Marxist tactics behind this bureaucratic dictum and FINALLY wake up to Obama as completely untrustworthy. Their naivete in gullibly supporting Obama care AS LONG AS THEY HAD THE CONSCIENCE PROTECTION is breathtaking. Maybe now they see the true colors of this President. Note also, his tactics include DIVIDING Catholics from the Bishops,AND THEN PROJECTING HIS BASE POLITICAL AIMS ONTO HIS REPUBLICAN OPPONENTS TAKING THE HIGH sounding RHETORIC of just trying to help women. Of course, the goal of his policy remains Marxist: health care legislation as the easiest way to turn a nation into a marxist one!

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 9:41 AM By goodcause
Nice to see the heirachy standing up to Obama for once. Iresepctive of individual Catholic positions on birth control, no Catholic wants to see our Church jerked around by the White House and patronized with their shell game of “accomodation”.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 10:00 AM By Juergensen
@ goodcause: There is no such thing as “individual Catholic positions on birth control.” There is one Catholic position on birth control, and it is defined by the Church, not by polls. Any individual who espouses a position at odds with the Church is not espousing a “Catholic” position.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 10:13 AM By 4unborn
President Obama’s “accommodation” makes it easier for religious employers to rationalize and violate their consciences. The cost will be buried in other premiums. There is no free lunch! Contraceptives and abortifacients will still be obtained through one’s employment with religious employers. Unless religious employers are completely exempt, continue to state unequivocally, “We cannot and will not obey!”

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 10:33 AM By RWhite
My questions to the bishops would be why did you not see this coming ? did you not read the 2000 page plus bill or did you rely on Nancy Pelosi’s advice of “We have to pass the bill so you can see what’s in it” ?. Is the individual mandate moral ?, did the constitution and its protections enter into your decision process. Did you bring this on yourselves and the faithful by supporting this in the first place ? , What lessons have you learned about such convoluted and needlessly complicated legislation that is immoral and more then likely unconstitutional ?. Should t you emphasize private charity rather then forced charity from the government ?. Private charity freely given helps to develop moral growth , the coercive “charity ” from the government has had many negative consequences and by the nature of its coercion can and usually does promote abuse and immorality. Better the bishops look to the writings of St. Thomas Aquinas for guidance on how charity and social good can be encouraged. Finally look at the record and philosophy of those who you ally yourself with this is not the first time ( nor the last) that the church and the faithful have been insulted and deceived we deserve better discernment from our bishops and our leaders..

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 10:43 AM By el rose
The Catholic Health Association and Catholic Charities USA need new leadership immediately! Let’s start with putting faithful Catholics at the helm. They are currently a disgrace. God bless you, bishops, for staying strong. You are in our prayers.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 11:04 AM By Elizabeth
I urge all of your to watch the Father Groeschel Prime Time Live that aired this past weekend! AB Dolan was on for the whole hour……very insightful!!!!! You can probably go on the EWTN website and still see it.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 11:28 AM By PAPA
Don’t know where the most smoke and mirrors really come from – the Bishops or the liar in the white house? The Bishops conned a lot of Catholics into voting for Pres. Obama, who gave them everything he promised: more abortions, more gay rights, more illegals, more hungry to feed and on and on. So where are the Bishops really coming from this time? MGB

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 11:36 AM By Bud
Putting faithful Catholics at the helm? Where are we going to find them? We have managed to put some of the most radical pseudo Catholics in power now. Note how O’Bama has surrounded himself with them like a lead wall. Our church has been seduced by the Democratic mantras since the 30s and our Hierarchy has followed suit. Reform must start at the top at the USCCB with their sometimes unintended support of everything relating to Social Doctrine that can be immoral. Amazingly it had much of it’s organization from Chicago! Sound familiar? I do believe the bishops must reform or they to will lose more of their subjects than they already have. Their medieval authority is being usurped by government. .

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 12:53 PM By Brian S.
DC – you don’t have to wonder what Cardinal Mahony would have done – he spoke out forcefully against this, as reported by the CCD.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 12:56 PM By Maryanne Leonard
Elizabeth, you are right. Watching Father Groeschel interview Archbishop Dolan on EWTN was distinctly satisfying and should not be missed.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 12:57 PM By Jim
How could anyone not have seen this coming! That man (Obama) can not be trusted.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 1:07 PM By CJ
” we are told that the one-year extension on the effective date (from August 1, 2012 to August 1, 2013) is available to any non-profit religious employer who desires it, without any government application or approval process. ” If this holds true, it gives us an opportunity to elect a new President who will lead the charge to repeal this mandate . . . but how can we trust any offer of compromise? We must keep the pressure on by contacting our Representatives and Senators to let them know that we expect them to fix this problem that they brought upon us by allowing a bill to pass Congress without knowing what was in that bill! 1st Congress must permenently repeal this mandate. 2nd We must all work to elect a President who will respect and defend our constitution and religious freedom.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 1:50 PM By tony
Those who remember WW11 and a certain man named Hitler can fill us in on what this president is trying to do. Many failed to see danger until it was too late. Beware Catholics supporting Obama.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 2:33 PM By Catherine
Jim asks, “How could anyone not have seen this coming?” Here is the response that Classical American Philosopher George Santayana would give… “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it!” “The rise of Mussolini in the 1930’s initially seemed positive to George Santayana. He viewed the Italian civil society as chaotic and thought Mussolini might bring order where needed. But Santayana soon noted the rise of a tyrant.”

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 6:02 PM By jon
I am no fan of Obama and did not vote for him, however I find Catherine’s and tony’s references to Hitler and Mussolini in association to “what is Obama doing” ridiculous, outlandish, irresponsible.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 6:04 PM By Robert Bushlow
Thank you Archbishop/Cardinal Dolan. Please stay strong in upholding the authentic teaching of The Catholic Church and opposing the unconstitutional Obamacare law.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 6:35 PM By Jackson
Tony, Hitler considered Aryan Germans to be superior beings and it was his goal to have Germans rule the world for 1000 years. I doubt President Obama supports the Aryan right. What he is doing is protecting the rights of women. This is a war on women and they are and will fight back.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 7:09 PM By Delilah
Jackson, what rights? I have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, the right to vote, the right to equal pay for equal work. Are you referring to the right to murder an unborn baby? Are you referring to the right to be made an object by men? I am a woman who is quite happy to be loved and affirmed in her marriage and who is able to practice her religion. Cardinal designate Dolan did a wonderful job explaining how the mandate interferes with religious freedom. Watch out, soon we may have the right to worship but not the right to practice our religion. Pax

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 8:05 PM By Catherine
Jackson says, ” I doubt President Obama supports the Aryan right.” Obama actually supports the murdering right to stop the beating hearts of countless innocent babies. Obama considers himself to be superior to unborn children. Murder is murder! Abortion is the American Holocaust.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 8:15 PM By Catherine
jon, The Germans and Italians who cheered on Hitler and Mussolini sounded just like you. The apathetic Germans and Italians who didn’t really care for Mussolini and Hitler sounded just like you. History proved them all wrong.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 8:23 PM By Anne T.
Jackson, the first thing Hitler did was get rid of any conscience clauses in the medical field. President Obama is doing the same now. That is the point being made. One’s skin does not have to white to do evil.. Many, if not most, of the abortion clinics are in black and hispanic neighborhoods. Not only does he want abortions for whites but blacks and Hispanics too. He and hs administration feed on their own people. He himself said he would not want his daughters to be “punished” with a child if they get pregnant. In other words, instead of helping his daughter to bear the child, he would kill it. That is not a protective father. Some young woman, and boys too, have been born with limbs torn off or half their faces burned off from botched abortions. Obama knows about that but does not give a damn.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 8:30 PM By Anne T.
By the way, Jackeson, those botched abortions were legal ones. The abortionist just did not “finish” the job. You know the job of snuffing out their lives by tearing the child apart limb by limb or by burning them to death with saline injections. All, for the most part, because someone wants to get rid of the evident of their affair or infidelity.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 8:50 PM By JLS
jon and Jackson have not been keeping up with the various federal putsches against our constitutional form of government. One glaring example is the large number of national police forces that we have now; another is the Dept of Homeland Defense, and there are all sorts of things that the federal govt is kicking into gear that will be in place as the totalitarian coupe d’etat snaps out. One example of resistance to this subtle onslaught of federal tyranny is the new movement of county sheriffs exerting their legal rights as the chief law officers in their counties with more authority there than the federal government. jon and Jackson are either not up on what they profess to know, or else they are agents of the snowjob being handed to the American public. One explanation to the seeming reticence or cowardice of the American bishops in the face of the govt is their insight and knowledge of this potential catastrophic move by global rulers to use money and force to subdue the constitutional tradition in the USA. Obama is a radical opponent of the Second Amendment to keep and bear arms … the National Rifle Association’s major agenda is to keep O from a second term, in which they believe the Second Amendment to the Bill of Rights, without which no other right can exist, is extremely imperiled. Other nations around the world with constitutions of sorts only have them because of the tradition of the USA military pressure on those nations … including the European ones. This USA tradition of insuring freedom globally is in severe danger … because of the likes of jon and Jackson, the sodomites, the abortion tolerators, the contraception fanatics, street drug marketing empires, you name it. Don’t turn your backs on the jons and Jacksons of this world, the flesh or the devil.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 8:58 PM By John F. Maguire
In reply to Juergensen: “Birth control” — G. K. Chesterton warned us against the term, given its immense range: from periodic abstinence to procured abortion; from conception-prevention to what today would be called resort to abortifacient pills. Mr. Juergensen, you come to this venue claiming loudly that that the Church has “defined” “birth control” and that that definition is some somehow singular (“one position”). Not exactly, indeed to the contrary: the Catholic Church has one position but that none position is first of all on the three purposes of married life: (1) the communication of sexual pleasure, (2) mutuum adjutorium (mutual assistance), and (3) openness to procreation. It is from the point of view these three finalities that the Church’s true teaching derives.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 9:08 PM By malber
About 10 years ago the state of california mandated contraceptive coverage be part of hmo’s. Thus for years the Dioceses and Catholic entities that provide their employees with Kaiser coverage have been providing them with coverage that includes contraceptives, abortions, and sterilazations. That’s a lot of people being provide these services by the Church which are in direct contradiction to the teachings of the Church.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 9:20 PM By Jeff
The USCCB should not let this opportunity pass as to WHAT and WHY Catholic teaching is what it is. This is a world wide teaching moment! They should not blow it.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 11:20 PM By Abeca Christian
now here are my two cents! jon I don’t think you are entirely honest here! Catherine and tony comments are right on because they make more sense!! jon isn’t entirely honest, I can discern that, I’m sure he supports Obama in some regards. You see how it works is that one will come off across as someone who knows well the CCC, in order not to lose his creditability, he must not disclose some things that may cause him to lose his creditability, that is key to fooling others so he can discredit the ones who are really defending the faith.

Posted Monday, February 13, 2012 11:24 PM By BETH
Are each of us willing to go to jail for our ‘Religious Freedom’, if necessary? Pray and think about it. If Obama gets re-elected it may come to that.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 8:14 AM By John F. Maguire
What Goodcause is pointing out, Mr. Juergensen, is that the empirical fact that not all Catholics accept the teaching of the Church on conception-prevention does not preclude large numbers of these same Catholics from rallying to the defense of the Church under attacked by abortocratic policies designed to strip Church institutions of their Catholic identity. In this context, given that abortocrats, as a political class, characteristically accept direct killing of infants as a (routine) form of birth control, why do you, for your part, continue to maintain that state legislatures, upon an overturn of _Roe v. Wade_, would, under the Organic Law of the United States, still retain the prerogative to vote in favor of abortion as a form of birth control? Do you not agree that the word person in the 14th Amendment is inclusive of all living human bodies — equally then, preborn infants?

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 9:46 AM By Abeca Christian
Mr Maguire why do you always feel the need to explain things, as if they were asking you to explain and as if they did not know, especially in the case of Juergensen, he seems to know a great deal on such important issues. I notice that you have that bad habit, like when you tried it on me, on another thread, the one on that glass cathedral article. Let me explain something to you, we know what the faith teaches, but what you need explaining from us on the other side, are the realities of the abuses that go on and that you have entirely or sometimes on some issues, your own interpretation of things, it proves that because you felt the need to vote for Obama and used your searching in the faith, something to give you that power to do so.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 9:56 AM By jon
Contrary to Catherine and Abeca, any right thinking and historically conscious person will readily realize that “whatever Obama is doing” is not equivalent to the evil horrors perpetrated by Nazi Germany and the other Axis powers. You are both wrong, and it should be noted here in justice for those who suffered the Nazi Holocaust, and in fairness to Obama.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 11:09 AM By Juergensen
Mr. Maguire: You come to this venue claiming loudly that that the Church has defined nothing. Remember this, John?: “December 18, 2010 1:46 PM By John F. Maguire ~ ‘I assure you, I’d rather be a true progressive than a false conservative.'”

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 3:23 PM By Anne T.
Excuse my typos, please, in my last post. One of them was that I left out the word “be” in the phrase “one does not have to be white”. President Obama has not done all the things Hitler did, but he certainly is gradually sliding there.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 5:46 PM By James Riley
Thank you Cardinal Dolan & USCCB for your strong and vocal response to this administrations attack on religious freedom. Our Faith is more important than this presidents’ reelection. Stand your ground with truth buckled around your waist.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 7:09 PM By Catherine
jon. In fairness to you, at the rate were going, be careful of what you say! You certainly would not be singing hymns of defense and thanksgiving for Obama, especially if in a few years you should find yourself assigned to a labor camp for wanting to practice your religion.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 7:30 PM By John F. Maguire
“Defined nothing”? Who, the Church? Mr. Juergensen, the entire dogmatic structure of the Faith has been defined by Holy Church, no? As for the axiom of mine you (from my point of view, always helpfully) quote, I am happy to see it reiterated. Given the false conservatism that is rampant in the blogosphere, I’m happy to repeat myself: I would rather be a true progressive than a false conservative.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 8:20 PM By jon
Sorry Catherine, but there is no logic in what you have just said. My point is solid and irrefutable, that your words comparing Obama to the Axis leaders—in light of the horrors of the Shoa—are irresponsible.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 8:24 PM By JLS
“The entire dogmatic structure of the Faith has been defined by the Holy Church … “: Problem with this concept, Maguire, is that God is dynamic and not structure. Since Holy Church is united with God, then Holy Church is only partially structure in Her journey to eternity, which is completely dynamic. Jesus Himself depicts Faith as a mustard seed that continues to grow and develop, and thus its primary essence is not structure but dynamic. Faith ceases at the entrance to eternity (St Paul), leaving only love which of course has not structure but is totally dynamic.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 8:28 PM By JLS
Progressivism like all political systems has the one goal of providing a ruler with a theory useful in carrying out his or her nature of ruler. The Gospel is neither liberal nor conservative nor progressive. These get confused all the time … It is in this confusion that the manipulators enslave the faithful in their imperfect vision.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 8:32 PM By Abeca Christian
Last I heard is that there are more abortions now than there were during the during the nazi holocaust. In all justice! The unborn count as people too.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 8:36 PM By JLS
jon,”Hitler” is used as a symbol to indicate extreme tyranny over mankind. There have been worse tyrants, but Hitler is the common symbol that they’re all grouped under. Obama is a tyrant and pushes the grisly deaths of millions of human lives. He threatens the freedom that western civilization began building almost three thousand years ago, and which the Church integrated into modern civilization, taking Her two thousand years. Obama would destroy human freedom, and is already well underway in his programs of executive force. Like any dictator, he gains power by economically self destructive means. That is how they all rise to power, and it is why they all end up destroyed, and why the duped populations end up extremely damaged.

Posted Tuesday, February 14, 2012 10:43 PM By jon
And Catherine, be honest with yourself now. It is perhaps the case that you are an Obama-hater. And therefore you dislike those who do not share your hatred.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 7:00 AM By Juergensen
Maguire: Please be honest and sign off on all of your posts with your infamous line, viz., “I would rather be a true progressive than a false conservative.” That way, Catholics who read this forum will be less likely to be misled by you down the path to Obama.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 8:20 AM By Brian S
A true progressive is one who is progressing towards truth. “Progress” in the other direction is retreat. It is hardly fair, Juergeson, to ignore the qualifier.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 8:58 AM By Anne T.
Jackson, I am alive today, at 69, because I never took any kind of estrogen, including the birthcontrol pill on a regular basis. The birthcontrol pill is pure poison. Many women get breast cancer and other cancers from it besides all its others side effects. Many women are no longer alive to tell you about it. Many doctors will not tell women the truth about it because they are afraid of being sued because they give it out. One female gynocologist was not afraid to tell me the truth because she did not give it out the Pill but only recommended Natural Family Planning. One of my relatives got a bad infection from an IUD. The doctor who put it in kept telling her that it was not from the IUD. She finally went to her childhood physician, a devout Catholic, who took the IUD out and the infection cleared up. The man who discovered the birthcontrol pill has even come out against it and said he wished he never had. Artificial contraceptives are a scam put on women by some men who cannot control their passions and those men and women who profit from it.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 9:14 AM By Anne T.
I should have said “one of the three doctors who discovered it. I would recommend Natural Family Planning such as that the Couple to Couple League offers. They have a website site online. I am sure the Pope John II Institute can help with certain things also. Ladies, do not be deceived by these men pushing the pill. Their intentions are not good.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 9:20 AM By Anne T.
I should have written “at least one of the three men who discovered the Pill later came out against it”.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 9:28 AM By Juergensen
Oh, please, Brian. “Progressive” Catholics are progressing towards truth? LOL. If “truth” is defined as sodomy, lesbianism, homosexual marriage, abortion, and sundry other perversions, you have a point. But truth is not so defined. The Truth has been Revealed. And “progressive” Catholics deny much of that Truth. It’s who they are. Dissidents and heretics. As Fr. Dwight Longenecker states: “Who are the Progressives and where are they going? The progressive movement in the Catholic Church refers to those who believe that the church must continue to adapt itself to the progressive trends in society. Progressives push for married priests, women priests, permission for contraception, a more ‘pro choice’ position on abortion, ‘open-ness’ to same sex unions, an end to what they claim is clerical control of the church, and other ‘modern’ causes’” (Catholic Online, 2/7/2010). These are the true progressives, Brian, and it is hardly fair for you to pretend otherwise.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 10:15 AM By Catherine
Juergensen, It seems that *true progressives* also love to pretend that they are Catholic by spreading confusion and shamelessly progressing into the hearts and minds of trusting Catholics with new aliases!

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 10:39 AM By Abeca Christian
Juergensen excellent comments!

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:05 AM By John F. Maguire
I am amazed that there is a segment of the laity, albiet a small one, that does not know that the Church herself distinguishes between true and false progress. See, for example, Paul VI, _Populorum Progessio_ (March 26, 1967) (“The progressive development of peoples is an object of deep intterest and concern to the Church”). In his first general audience for 2006, the prepared text for which constitutes a commentary on St. Paul’s teaching that Christ is the firstborn of all creation, Pope Benedict XVI added the following words: “St. Paul shows us something of great importance, history has a goal, it has a direction, history moves towards a humanity united in Christ. In other words, St. Paul tells us yes, there is progress in history, there is one if we strive for evolution in history, progress is everything that allows us to come closer to Christ, thus leading us closer to a united humanity, to true humanism… And behind these indications is also a hidden imperative for us, to work for progress, somewthing we all want: all of us can work towards the closeness of men towards Christ, we can personally conform to Christ, going along the line of true progress.” Source: Catholic News Agency, Vatican City, January 4, 2006.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:19 AM By Catherine
I am amazed that there is a segment of *true progressives* who think they can pull that curly and linty wool over everyone’s eyes!

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:36 AM By Juergensen
I am amazed that there is a segment of the laity, albeit a small one, that defines “progress” as denial of Revealed Truth. Sort of like Obama reducing abortions by increasing them, no?

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 12:18 PM By John F. Maguire
Show me a post of mine, Juergensen, wherein I deny the revealed Truth vouchsafed by Holy Church.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 1:00 PM By John F. Maguire
Although you do not say so explicitly, I take it, Catherine, that you concur in Benedict XVI’s distinction between “the line of true progress,” on the one hand, and faux-progressive (counterfeit) lines, on the other hand. On this basis, let’s then consult an early writer on the subject of moral progress in human history, namely Adam Smith. Adam Smith (1723-1790) is well known for studying the phenomenon of economic progress (see _Wealth of Nations_, 1776) but by sharp contrast his _Theory of Moral Sentiments_ (1759) has suffered neglect. Here, on moral progress, is an exemplary passage from Adam Smith’s _Moral Sentiments_: “Can there be a greater barbarity for example, than to hurt an infant? Its helplessness, its innocence, its amiableness, call forth the compassion, even of an enemy, and not to spare that tender age is regarded as the most furious effort of an enraged and cruel conqueror. What then should we imagine must be the heart of a parent who could injure that weakness which even a furious enemy is afraid to violate? Yet the exposition, that is, the murder of new-born infants, was a practice allowed of in almost all the states of Greece, even among the polite and civilized Athenians; and whenever the circumstances of the parent rendered inconvenient to bring up the child, to abandon it to hunger, or to wild beasts, was regarded without blame or censure.” Smith recognizes that severely underdeveloped living conditions are correlated with the practice of infanticide, but he also points out that “In the latter ages of Greece, however, the same thing was permitted from views of remote interest or conveniency… [….] Uninterrupted custom by this time… thoroughly authorized the practice….” Smith here, we remember. is addressing 18th century readers with the intent of drawing their attention to the salience of moral progress in human history. Source: Adam Smith, _Theory of Moral Sentiments_ (New York: Cosimo Classics, 2007), pp. 214-15.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 2:04 PM By Catherine
John F. Maguire, Your posts are not clear and you are not consistent. You could have been such a remarkable force for goodness but you are the one who chose to use your intellect to become a *true progressive.* You may cite books, you may cite the saints, you may cite the Holy Father but your *truly progressive agenda* has absolutely nothing in common with what the saints said or what the Holy Father actually means.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 2:42 PM By John F. Maguire
Pray tell, Catherine, how does my defense of Catholic social doctrine — which in a mock-up way you characterize as a “true progressive agenda” (because, and precisely because, you think it is a false progressive agenda) — depart from the “true line of progress” identified by Pope Benedict XVI?

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 2:44 PM By Abeca Christian
Catherine I agree with your comments to Maguire. Catherine I like you because you are always helping folks to be a force for goodness. That is what I am always trying to do for my own kids, they have different temperaments and it is not always going in that direction since they are still naive and young, so we have a full time job. Whew!

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 2:44 PM By JLS
Catherine, good intro. Now the real challenge is to make it crystal clear to readers at any level why Maguire is accurately described as you have presented. His twists are extremely subtle, so subtle that maybe he does not even realize it when pointed out to him.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 2:48 PM By JLS
Maguire, I’ve been showing your heresy for years … and you simply ignore it. Juergensen has also shown it clearly. And so have others. It essentially is the ancient heresy of separating the spiritual aspect of the soul from the material aspect. This heresy is prevalent among Catholics and is the device which allows them to vote for enemies of God such as Obama, or even push abortion and claim to be faithful Catholics. Your religion, Maguire, has withdrawn from the real world and rests now in fantasy and ungrounded intellect.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 3:43 PM By Brian S.
I say True Progressive, Juergensen, you say “Progressive Catholic”? Why is it necessary for you to substitute words of your own for those of mine? I daresay it is because you would rather argue against your inventions and not what I say. But why argue against me, or Mr. Maguire? Address your argument against Pope Benedict XVI who has stated that “PROGRESS IS EVERYTHING THAT ALLOWS US TO COME CLOSER TO CHRIST.” and who urges us to “PERSONALLY CONFORM TO CHRIST, GOING ALONG THE LINE OF TRUE PROGRESS”.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 5:14 PM By John F. Maguire
JLS: Yes, I know — you’re a virtual Ahab in your heresy hunt, but with this difference: Ahab did his homework. Reply: (1) There’s no heresy in my or anyone else’s defense of the Bishops’ voting ethics document _Faithful Citizenship_. (2) There’s no theological error, let alone heresy, in my or anyone else’s defense of the 14th Amendment (“nor shall any State deprive any person of the right to life … without due process of law”), a defense that, by the way, runs contrary to your and Jon Juergensen’s state-prerogativism, according to which, upon _Roe_ getting overturned, states would, in consequence, possess a prerogative of voting for-or-against the right-to-life of preborn infants. ~ But wait, doesn’t such a purported prerogataive contradict the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution? See Evann Gastaldo, “It’s Time to Overturn _Roe v. Wade_, and Rick Santorum is serious about doing just that,” _Newser_, January 23, 2012, online. The reason why Mr. Gastaldo deems Senator Santorum serious about overturning _Roe v. Wade_ is because, and just because, “Santorum bases his argument on the 14th Amendment and our inalienable right to life.” Senator Santorum, JLS, is not a state-prerogativist.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 5:27 PM By k
The Priests for LIfe Website has an article called “True “Progressives” Will Love Pope Benedict”. It is written by Deacon KEigh Fournier of Catholic Online. True progressives are 100% in line with the Catholic faith. Dissenters who call themselves Progressives are really heretical and rebellious.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 6:09 PM By Anne T.
K and others, dissenters have so often misused the word “progressive” to mean an anything goes modernism that now many of the faithful hate the word. One woman told me once that she wanted a more “progressive” book in a certain meeting I go to, and I caught on that she meant one that approved of living togather without marriage and many other sinful behaviors. The word has been ruined by many.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 7:58 PM By k
Anne T., I agree.

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 8:07 PM By Catherine
Be on guard for wolves in sheep’s clothing who promote error by deliberately confusing and misleading others by promoting Modernism. They will even say, *I’d rather be a true progressive than a false conservative* See CCD’s article ‘More Dirty Laundry’ to see the terribly cruel examples of the deceptive practices of Modernism or true progressives. Kathyrn Hancock Ragsdale, the president and dean of the Episcopal Divinity School also likes to refer to herself as a True American Progressive. Kathryn is on the board of the Naral Project, The Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, The White House Project and Progressive Religious Partnership. Kathryn Ragsdale believes that abortion is a blessing and that abortion providers are doing holy work. The saints, the martyrs, the early Church Fathers realized then and Our Holy Father realizes now that there will always be those who work against the Church by using certain words or modernized chicanery to undermine Church teaching. Yes, Ms. Kathryn Ragsdale calls herself a true Progressive and she calls herself a priest, but her true progressiveness is open for all to see. Progressivism is a euphemism for heterodoxy and for posters to suggest that the Holy Father will ever support or promote heterodoxy is as disgraceful as the touted true progressive Kathryn Ragsdale, telling the world that abortion is a blessing and abortionists are doing holy work. PS.. I just loved using that word “chicanery”! I credit the usage of that most descriptive word to a wonderful Immaculate Heart Sister, who taught us that particular word when she explained how we needed to be prepared to stand up for the Catholic Faith. She understood well the meaning of being persecuted by those from within her own Order. This beautiful and holy sister not only kept her full habit, she kept her full faith. Do you know why she kept her full habit and kept her full faith? She never fell for the chicanery of Modernism or Progressivism!

Posted Wednesday, February 15, 2012 8:45 PM By John F. Maguire
The misuse of the word progress by faux progressives does not mean that the word progress should be handed over to those who misuse it as if it were true that the word progress does not properly belong to the Catholic understanding of history and society. The word progress DOES belong — properly belong — to the Catholic understanding of history and society. Pope Benedict XVI has made this point on several major occasions.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 4:08 AM By Brian S.
Yet, Anne T, Benedict’s use of the word “progressive” shows that he does not consider it ruined, but meaningful. Here, I provided its meaning directly. Maguire referenced Paul VI and provided Benedict’s exact phrase to assist research. All of that was ignored, to use the word as a taunt, such practices are destructive of all meaning.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 8:46 AM By Catherine
John Maguire You say, “The word progress DOES belong – properly belong to the Catholic understanding of history and society.” This is another excellent example of your own inconsistency and it is certainly not the same tune you were fiddling when you were promoting Douglas Kmiec’s ignoring of those words. Why are you trying to deceive the readers of CCD? You praised Professor Kmiec’s work when he thought he could water down and ignore the Catholic understanding of those truths to teach Catholics they could vote for a staunchly pro-abortion Barack Obama by using truly progressive lies. Yes, Douglas Kmiec used his truly progressive logic and Barack Obama betrayed Kmiec for selling out those Catholic truths, didn’t he Mr. Maguire? You cannot tap dance Catholic understanding in rhythm and harmony with the devil’s agenda to destroy ALL SOULS, no matter how truly wise and truly progressive you may think you are. Barack Obama betrayed his words to our bishops, who also believed Obama when he promised not to do what he has done by issuing the mandate that threatens our religious freedoms. Do you think the devil cares about breaking promises to Catholic bishops? Should our bishops have been tap dancing with Barack Obama? Since you are a very intelligent man and you are also able to see what has happened to Professor Kmiec and to our bishops for trusting Obama. This leaves faithful Catholics with one conclusion about your true progressive mission on CCD. That mission has absolutely nothing to do with upholding those Catholic understandings. We would have recognized that loyalty in your posts. No, Mr. Maguire, as bright as you are you cannot fool everyone by attempting to bait and switch the true understanding of Catholic truths. It did not work for Professor Kmiec because he did not have the supernatural forces of truth on his side. Supernatural power and supernatural graces will always be greater than those who disobey God yet still view themselves as *true progressives.*

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 9:35 AM By Brian S.
Perhaps it would help folks appreciate language to face up to the reality that today, Catholicsm is counter-cultural.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 10:07 AM By Anne T.
Yes, Brian S., we all know about the misuse of words. If the word “progessive” is used to mean progressing toward becoming more and more holy and loyal to the teachings of the Church, it is good, but too often the word has been used as an euphemism by the radical left for the opposite meaning. We also know about the misuse of the words “gay”, “pro-choice” and many others.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 10:08 AM By Maryanne Leonard
Catholicism is both currently out of fashion with today’s talking heads and hipsters, and concurrently underlies the entirety of Western Civilization. It’s still okay to be Catholic, though, as today’s culture allows for individual quirkiness and finds it both quaint and admirable to stand on one’s own two feet. I think most of us would still be Catholic if we found ourselves to be the last Catholic standing in a smaller but holier Church.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 10:12 AM By Anne T.
It is best to ask the person what they mean by such words as when they use the word “gay”. I would ask them now just what do you mean by the word “gay”, someone who is happy and cheerful, someone with a homosexual orientation or someone who practices sodomy? That might make the person think more seriously about the too frequent usages of such words.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 10:16 AM By Anne T.
If you are brave enough, you might add “and unnatural vices” to those words in my last post. That will really “throw them for a loop”.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 11:34 AM By John F. Maguire
For sure, I defended Douglas Kmiec’s break with Governor Romney over the abortion issue, Professor Kmiec holding as I do that the question of abortion as a legal matter is first of all a matter of the Organic Law of the United States; and therefore never first of all a matter of the arbitrary vote of state legislatures. On the voting ethics question, as you know Catherine, I subscribe to Cardinal Ratzinger’s 2004 Note on the moral theology of voting AND I subscribe to the USCCB’s document, _Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship_. ~ Three other points: (1) Your phrase “truly progressive lies” is a contradiction in terms. Lying is an intrinstic evil, and as measured by the dynamism of true progress (see Benedict’s definition), its effect is always regressive, never progressive. (2) In addition, Catherine, you seem not to have read my posts objecting at the time to the University of Notre Dame’s decision to grant President Obama an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws. (3) Nor have you cited a single post of mine as evidence that I’ve endorsed or promoted a candidate for office. ~ That I agree with Senator Santorum on the relevance of the 14th Amendment to the right-to-life of preborn infants (Rick Santorum rejects state-prerogativism) is but a simple concurrence in Senator Santorum’s reading of the Constitution — I’m not promoting candidates for office on this website.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 11:52 AM By Brian S.
Anne T., I followed your advice – my post was clear “A true progressive is one who is progressing towards truth.”

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 11:53 AM By Catherine
Brian S, Here is another reminder. Our Lady of Fatima warned us that more souls fall into hell because of sins of the flesh. On Nov. 29, 2011, 2:58 PM, the topic, ‘It is barbaric’, you also ran interference and defended a parish inviting De Colores of Orange County to hear about the *truly progressive agenda* of intersectionality. ..Luke 17:2…”It would be better for him, that a millstone were hanged around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea, than that he should scandalize one of these little ones.” Brian S, Why are you constantly running interference and defending the progressive scandalizing of God’s little ones?

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:58 PM By Catherine
Brian S, Are you dodging this question? Once again, Do you still defend and support a Catholic parish inviting De Colores Queer Orange County to their parish church? De Colores Queer Orange County is a homosexual activist group that promotes all gay rights.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 1:25 PM By Anne T.
Brian S., you really do need to answer Catherine’s question about De Colores Queer of Orange County.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 3:33 PM By Anne T.
And Catherine, by the term “gay rights” does the organization mean the so-called “rights” to practice unnatural vices? I am following my own advice. Let us get everything clear here.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 3:37 PM By Brian S
I’ve answered this question before, but why is it being asked? Where have I posted anything that you interpret as support for De Colores Queer of Orange County? Where have I ever run interference for scandalization? How can you possibly hold my repeated citations of Leo, Pius, Paul, John Paul, and Benedict and their insistences on governmental action to protect the poor and unemployed as corrupting children?

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 3:39 PM By k
Anyone, tell me if I’m off. Should insurance companies have to pay for something immoral? Did the bishops speak out for them? Will Catholic employers have to pay for it? Would the bishops have stood against the government if they were not directly threatened? I know EWTN and Priests for Life have sued the government on the grounds of unconstitutionality.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 4:51 PM By Catherine
Brian S, You can’t be serious! Who do you think you are fooling? “Insistences on government actions to protect the poor and unemployed”? Are we talking about that same government who wants to protect Planned Parenthood and take action in removing our religious freedom? Once again Brian S, HOW exactly does the radical pro-homosexual activist group known as De Colores Queer fit into that action of protecting the poor and the unemployed? Why do I have the feeling that your response will be a real progressive doozer!!! Let’s hear your response Brian S?

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 4:56 PM By JLS
Without the bishops’ doctrinal voices, there is only the sway of relativism in politics. But, you say, what about natural law? Well, duh, the Church has been up and running for 2000 years, and those inclined to follow natural law are not the same ones ruling politics today. Thus, without the bishops’ doctrinal voices, there is only tyranny rising towards its “tower of babel” moment … whenever that might happen, sooner or later.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 4:59 PM By JLS
Brian S., that is what I once imagined; however, it is a false idea that a “true progressive” … Because there is no such thing … again because Progressivism is a political movement associated with the left wing of politics, and the idea and the movement are not progressing anywhere, same as with the democrats, republicans, etc. These are political parties running governments … and trying to kick out the religion aspect because it militates against their world, flesh and devil means of rule.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 5:59 PM By JLS
Maguire, what you refer to by phrases such as organic law or natural law, and presuming that politics is founded on it is outrageously naiive. Those in government who push for evil things do not follow organic or natural law; they follow the “world, the flesh, and the devil”. This has been the long matured case from the onset of Catholicism. St John tells us that even then there were many anti-Christs running amok. These are the rulers who attempt to rule in defiance of Church doctrine.

Posted Thursday, February 16, 2012 8:31 PM By John F. Maguire
JLS: Didn’t I already cite the definition of Organic Law provided to us by Black’s Law Dictionary? Yet now you go ahead and run together Organic Law (i.e., fundamental law — in the United States of America: the Declaration of Indepedence and the Constitution) with the natural law, in which Organic Law partakes but as, and just as, positive law. Nor do you seem to understand the Pauline acceptation of natural law as the law written on the human heart, which is to say, the law written on the heart of those as well who lack access to the Church. Perhaps its worth while starting with primary phronesis, that is, with the first principle of the natural law, namely, Do good and avoid evil. This primary phronesis is the initiating habitus of the natural law as it abides in the hearts of all human beings.

Posted Friday, February 17, 2012 12:25 AM By Brian S.
To correct the astonishment that Popes call for Civil Authority to care for the poor, try researching the phrase “should be specially cared for and protected by the Government”. Finally, you must know that evil governments were known to Popes prior to our own, yet surely you recognize that the Church has always upheld the need for civil authority, as did Jesus.