We’ve all heard people around us who claim to be Catholic and yet express views that are absolutely at odds with the teachings of Christ and His Church. If this confuses you, you’re not alone. But the true Catholic view can be known. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website contains a section devoted specifically to the issue of healthcare and healthcare reform. The full statement of the position of the bishops is available for all to read* and print out if they like (less than 5 pages in my print preview).
Related to this, I’m also posting the following text from a newsletter I received today from One Nation Under God. It shows how Planned Parenthood is (or certain people at PP are) either confused or are determined to misunderstand and misrepresent the actual position of the bishops on healthcare reform and life issues in general. I think it provides evidence of a hard-headedness not uncommon in the world today. (But, then, I suppose hard-headedness is not peculiar to our time. The Bible itself provides ample proof of that.)
In a desperate attempt to keep abortion in the healthcare bills being debated in Congress, Planned Parenthood went after the United States bishops for trying to exclude abortion. The United States Catholic Conference of Bishops (USCCB) had sent two letters to all members of Congress with criteria for a healthcare bill they could support. Knowing that all amendments to specifically exclude abortion had been defeated in committees, the bishops warn that the healthcare reform bills leave the door open for mandated abortion coverage and taxpayer funding of abortion.
Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood accused the bishops of wanting to make women second-class citizens, “Seems that, if the U.S. Conference had its way, the national health care system would make American women second-class citizens and deny them access to benefits they currently have.”
Yesterday Fr. Eutenauer [spelling in the original], President of Human Life International, rebukes Richards for her attack on our bishops, “Ms. Richards has done a favor to all pro-lifers and people of good faith in her hate-filled rant against the shepherds of our beloved Church…First, she has reminded everyone that, despite President Obama’s recent statements to the contrary, abortion is absolutely going to be covered in any health care reform legislation that crosses his desk. He and his cronies in Congress are much too beholden to the abortion lobby for any different outcome.”
Fr. Eutenauer [spelling in the original] makes reference to President Obama’s false statement in his teleconference on Wednesday with the religious-left that taxpayer funding of abortion was not in the healthcare bills. Catholic League president William Donohue asks “Is Obama lying, or just misinformed?”
Please consider sending a note to Cardinal Justin Rigali and Bishop William Murphy thanking them for their leadership and offering prayer and encouragement as they continue this important work. More information on the bishops’ position on health care can be found at the USCCB healthcare webpage.
— From the One Nation Under God newsletter, August 22 2009.
*This statement was originally released in 1993. The Church has been concerned about healthcare reform for many years prior to that and has made known her teachings and views on morality, social and life issues throughout her long history. With the There is no excuse for an adult Catholic to be unaware of what the Church teaches, especially those in public office and those who teach the faith to others, not with bookstores and libraries and the vast amount of material archived on the web. Absolutely no excuse at all, barring a flat out refusal to know or an inability to know. I think for most people it must be a matter of laziness and the fact that those who teach the faith do so in such a haphazard and sloppy manner. But don’t get me started on that! That’s a whole other topic.
Read more about it:
In face of Planned Parenthood attack, USCCB official insists abortion is not health care
Misleading Attacks on Women’s Health: