Contraception and Religious Freedom

“We have a year to violate our consciences.” I’m John Stonestreet, and this is The Point.

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That comment from Catholic Archbishop Timothy Dolan was aimed at the Obama Administration’s announcement that religious organizations be forced to purchase insurance offering free contraception for its workers. So faith based organizations, like Catholic hospitals, who object to artificial contraception must violate their conscience to comply.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said the proposal “strikes the appropriate balance between respecting religious freedom and increasing access to important preventive services.” Only it doesn’t -- the church’s view won’t change in a year, so they’ll lose this institutional freedom to act from their religious convictions. Even the Washington Post said the decision went too far!

As Chuck Colson wrote recently, this administration has consistently undermined religious freedom -- even renaming it freedom of worship, which extends to personal faith but not public expression when conviction demands it.

Now you may not hold Rome’s conviction on birth control, but we had better be asking, “What’s next?” For, I’m John Stonestreet.

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Further Reading

First It Was the Catholics
Chuck Colson | BreakPoint | January 24, 2012

Catholic Bishops Criticize Obama Admin Rules on Contraception
Shawna Thomas | NBC | January 20, 2012

Respecting Religious Exemptions
The Washington Post (Editorial Board) | January 22, 2012

Manhattan Declaration