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USCCB Releases New Video on the Fight to Protect Conscience Rights in America

By Kathy Schiffer
Ave Maria Radio
Today the USCCB released a new video which reiterates Catholic objections to the Obama Administration’s controversial HHS Mandate.  Through the stories of three women, the video explains why all Americans should be upset about this threat to our First Amendment liberties.

Despite the Administration’s assurances that the conscience rights of individuals will be protected, they just can’t get it right.

Speaking in early July, Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, reported that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ final rule—which was made public on June 28—does not appear, on first analysis, to eliminate “the need to continue defending our rights in Congress and the courts.”  As it did from the start, the Mandate still requires employers to offer employee health insurance for contraceptives, including abortion-causing drugs, and female sterilization, even when doing so violates their conscience.

Cardinal Dolan  listed three areas of concern based on the March 2012 statement of the Administrative Committee, United for Religious Freedom:
  1. the narrow definition of “religious employers” that are exempted,
  2. the “accommodation” of religious ministries excluded from that definition, and
  3. the treatment of businesses run by people who seek to operate their companies according to their religious principles.

“We are concerned as pastors with the freedom of the Church as a whole—not just for the full range of its institutional forms, but also for the faithful in their daily lives—to carry out the mission and ministry of Jesus Christ,” Cardinal Dolan said.
A first concern with the definition of “religious employer,” and the third concern with faithful business owners and other individuals, still have not been addressed at all.The second area of concern—the “accommodation” for religious charities, schools, hospitals, and other ministries of service—appears mostly the same, except for three relatively small changes that will require more time and analysis to evaluate.
The statement noted that the Conference “will have more to say when this aspect of our analysis is completed.”
The U.S. Bishops invite Catholics and all concerned citizensto join in praying this prayer for the protection of conscience rights in health care.

Prayer For Protection Of Conscience Rights In Health Care

  Father, in Jesus our Lord, we praise and thank you for your most precious gift of human life and for forming us in your divine image. Keep us, the dwelling place of your most Holy Spirit, ever healthy in body and soul.

Jesus, Divine Healer, pour your grace upon all those afflicted with illness or disease.  Protect from all harm those who are vulnerable due to sickness, suffering, frailty, poverty or age, whether elderly or unborn.

Holy Spirit, touch the hearts of all who serve human life in medicine and science, so they will  protect the dignity of each person, from conception to natural death, and remain faithful advocates of all entrusted to their care.  

Grant those who are called to serve as health care providers renewed conviction in their ministry, and increased wisdom to treat the whole person, and not merely the illness.

Protect the right of health care providers to serve their patients without being forced to violate their moral and religious convictions. Guard them against discrimination, that they might be free to follow you faithfully while fulfilling their professional duties.

Grant our lawmakers the wisdom and courage to uphold conscience rights for those called to the ministry of healing, and help them resist the pressure to become collaborators in the culture of death.

Give us strength to be bold and joyful witnesses to the truth that every human life is sacred.In your goodness, guard our freedom to live out our faith and to follow you in all that we do.

Father, we ask this in Jesus’ name, through the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Today on "Kresta in the Afternoon" – July 16, 2013

Talking about the “things that matter most” on July 16

4:00 – 6:00 – Direct to My Desk
Today on “Kresta In The Afternoon” we want to talk to you. You pick the topics and questions that matter most to you. We will pick up on the public discourse over the George Zimmerman / Travon Martin affair, the demise of abortion clinics this year, and the importance of trust – trust in God, trust in fellow Catholics, trust of government. Be ready to call 877-573-7825. This and more on today’s Kresta in the Afternoon.

Five Things Our Unsacred Society Holds Sacred

Posted by
Truth & Charity

It seems like every morning I wake up to face something I hold sacred being drawn, quartered and spat upon by any one of the vast array of members of what is generally considered American “society.” Because there is so much that was at one time cherished and has been very intentionally trampled underfoot, it can be rather tempting to throw my hands into the air, questioning “Is nothing sacred?!?!” Outbursts such as these are generally not helpful and while musing about the unholy things an immoral society reveres, I think it important to consider the things that are both good and held as sacred by our generally unsacred culture. It’s a short list, I know, but sometimes you take what you can get.

1. Wet Paint – Whether it’s being considerate of another person’s hard work or the desire to remain clean, anything with a wet paint sign will be avoided at all costs. I’ve heard of bank robbers who made it all the way to the vault only to turn around and go home because on it hung the revered sign. Actually, that’s not true, but what if it were?!

2. HOV lanes – Surprisingly, the Dallas, TX transit website says it almost as well as I could (which is enough for a blogger under a deadline): Anyone who’s driven around the metroplex during rush hour knows a sad truth: It’s lonely in bumper-to-bumper traffic. The fact is, you have more fun when you share a ride in a High Occupancy Vehicle lane. Just like it takes two to tango, it also takes at least two people to use an HOV lane. Notice the tango-ing passengers to the right, taken from the same website. When HOV lanes first appeared in Dallas over 10 years ago, there was merely a white line dividing the HOV riders from the slow going riff-raff that refused to enter into the sacred byway. Nowadays, they have probably followed Houston’s example and erected concrete barriers to keep people from HOV-hopping; if only protecting that which is actually sacred were that easy…

Read the other three here!

[VIDEO] Male students say they support abortion for casual sex


Oliver Darcy
By Oliver Darcy
on Jul 15, 2013
Several male students at the University of Colorado – Boulder said they support keeping abortion legal in order to increase their chances at having casual sex.
In the video, posted on YouTube Monday, conservative pundit Caleb Bonham asked students if they support “bro-choice.”

“A bro-choice is where I am pro-choice because I am a man and if women don’t have access to abortion on demand then I won’t get laid as often,” explained Bonham in the video.

“That is a true fact,” one student said.

“Bro-choice is the right choice because if you want to get laid you best go with the bro-choice,” chimed in another.

WATCH: Students say they support abortion to increase odds at casual sex

Bonham also asked a female student if she would consider having sex with someone who is pro-life.

“Would you sleep with me if I was pro-life?” he asked.

“No,” the female student replied.

Bonham told Campus Reform in a statement on Monday afternoon that he filmed the video to see if students would “object to the notion that men should support abortion because it allows for care-free casual sex.”

“Essentially, my video reveals a rarely discussed but prevalent self-centered mindset among the college aged pro-choice crowd,” said Bonham. “One that views abortion as a means to ensure materialistic responsibility-free sex.”

Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @oliverdarcy

CampusReform.org is a project of the non-profit Leadership Institute. Please consider supporting our efforts.

Fixing houses through faith: Students repair more than 60 homes in Muskegon area

By Brandon Champion | BCHAMPIO@mlive.com
Follow on Twitter
on July 12, 2013 at 6:55 AM, updated July 12, 2013 at 6:56 AM


MUSKEGON, MI – They’ve come from all over, but with a common goal in mind.
For the past week, as many as 380 high school students from around the Midwest have moved to the Muskegon area in an effort to make the lives of the area’s low-income senior citizens better.
The students are part of the Group Workcamps Foundation. The foundation, which was founded in 1991, organizes hundreds of short-term mission trips in the United States and abroad which focus on home repair and community service.

“There are so many things I like about this,” said Tara Brooks, 24, of Arlington Heights, Ill., who is participating in her 11th mission trip. “Group Workcamps does an amazing job organizing this. You get to meet a lot of random people. The residents are awesome and so grateful for everything we do.”
Catholic Charities West Michigan is sponsoring this week’s Workcamp.

“The Workcamp philosophy supports our mission of offering innovative, collaborative programs that deliver high-quality social service programs to those in need,” said Deborah J. Nykamp, president and CEO of Catholic Charities West Michigan. “We are very pleased to host these dedicated and hard-working young people, who will be able to make a very real difference in the lives of some of our most vulnerable seniors.”

The students, who come from nine different Midwestern states, will spend their week offering free repairs at more than 60 homes. Those repairs include painting, roofing, repairing porches, building wheelchair ramps and assisting with any other household chores needed.

On Thursday afternoon, five of the students were at the Muskegon Heights home of Alice Doxey. Doxey, 75, has lived in the house on Maffett Street for 47 years.

Read more here.

Liberal Cartoonists Spin Passage of Texas Bill to Ban Late-Term Abortions


by Jill Stanek | Washington, DC | LifeNews.com | 7/15/13 11:12 AM

How did liberal political cartoonists spin passage in Texas on July 13 of an omnibus pro-life bill, which includes a ban on abortions after 20 weeks? See the many ways below, but first, a zinger from our side.

by Jeff Darcy at Cleveland.com
Moving on, a pro-death twofer by John Branch at BranchToon.com

Several more cartoons here.

The house that time forgot: Mother and sons keep family home frozen in the 1920s for 70 YEARS with original decoration, food and furniture

  • The suburban semi-detached house at 7 Blyth Grove, Worksop, was the home of the Straw family, who were grocers
  • After William Straw senior died suddenly in 1932, his grief-stricken family decided to leave the house as it was
  • Now owned by the National Trust, it offers a unique glimpse into family life in suburban Britain between the wars

By Harriet Arkell
| 3

When William Straw, a grocer, died suddenly in 1932, his grief-stricken widow and sons decided to leave their house exactly as he knew it.
Decorated in 1923, the redbrick Worksop semi then remained just as it was until the last Straw to live there, Mr Straw’s son William junior, died and bequeathed it to the National Trust in 1991.
The rooms are painted in the dark colours fashionable at the time, gilt-framed oil paintings hang from picture rails, and the larder is full of Bovril and tinned sardines.
Click here for video

The redbrick semi in Worksop offers a fascinating glimpse of suburban family life in Britain between the wars
Glimpse of a more formal age: The redbrick semi in Worksop offers a fascinating glimpse of suburban family life in Britain between the wars
Number 7 Blyth Grove in Worksop still looks just as it did in 1923 when the Straw family decorated it
National Trust propertyi: Number 7 Blyth Grove in Worksop still looks just as it did in 1923 when the Straw family decorated it
The larder reflecs the palate of a different age: tinned new potatoes, tinned sardines, and jars and jars of Bovril
Tinned herrings, anyone? The larder reflects the palate of a different age: tinned new potatoes, tinned sardines, and jars and jars of Bovril

Owned by the National Trust since the family of grocers who lived there passed it on, it is one of the Trust’s more unusual properties, and all the more fascinating for it.
There are no expensive treasures or rare antiques; instead the house, known as Mr Straw’s House, offers an authentic glimpse into how an ordinary British family lived a century ago.
Built in 1905, it was the home of the Straws, a grocer family headed by William Straw senior and his wife, Florence.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2361731/The-house-time-forgot-Red-brick-semi-frozen-1920s-original-decoration-food-furniture-untouched-90-YEARS.html#ixzz2Z9NkMuOc
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Today on "Kresta in the Afternoon" July 15, 2013

Talking about the “things that matter most” on July 15

4:00 – Darwin’s Doubt: The Explosive Origin of Animal Life and the Case for Intelligent Design
When Charles Darwin finished The Origin of Species, he thought that he had explained every clue, but one. Though his theory could explain many facts, Darwin knew that there was a significant event in the history of life that his theory did not explain. During this event, the “Cambrian explosion,” many animals suddenly appeared in the fossil record without apparent ancestors in earlier layers of rock. In Darwin’s Doubt, Stephen Meyertells the story of the mystery surrounding this explosion of animal life—a mystery that has intensified, not only because the expected ancestors of these animals have not been found, but because scientists have learned more about what it takes to construct an animal. Meyer joins us.

5:00 – A Martyr’s Crown
While on assignment for The Catholic Sun, the Archdiocese of Phoenix newspaper, Joyce Coronel discovered the story of those who have fled the violence and religious persecution in her their native Iraq. She relates these stories in her new novel, “A Martyr’s Crown.” Coronel has taken elements of her life growing up in Scottsdale and as a writer for The Catholic Sun to craft a story loosely based on the real hardships facing Chaldean Catholics living in the Middle East. She joins us today.

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