In Pennsylvania's

Saturday, June 30, 2012

The Pa Catholic Conference is urging action on HB 1977 / SB 3.

The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference is urging that messages be sent to our legislators in Harrisburg:

    "Now that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the Affordable Care Act, Pennsylvania must take steps to prevent abortion coverage in the insurance exchanges. Senate Bill 3 and House Bill 1077 are two active bills that would prohibit insurance providers that participate in the insurance exchanges created by the federal health care reform law from covering elective abortion services.
    "HB 1977 passed the House with a vote of 146-45, which clearly indicates that the legislature is not in favor of using taxpayer's money to fund abortions. This bill is similar to Senate Bill 3, which passed the Senate 37-12.

    "House Bill 1977 is now in the state Senate. Senate Bill 3 is in the state House. Please send a message to your legislators requesting this important pro-life vote!

    "Take Action"

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

"Nuns on the Bus"

Your Excellencies:

I wish to call your attention to Network's "Nuns on the Bus" tour, which is being sponsored locally by the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Philadelphia.

In its introductory video, Network executive director Sister Simone Campbell flippantly acknowledges finding the Holy Father's Caritas et Veritae to be boring and singles out "Republicans" for criticism.  While Sister Simone is highly critical of Rep. Paul Ryan, her own understanding of authentic Catholic Social Teaching strikes me as scandalously inadequate.  Clearly, I am not alone in thinking so.  As per the Vatican's Doctrinal Assessment of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious
  • "while there has been a great deal of work on the part of LCWR promoting issues of social justice in harmony with the Church’s social doctrine, it is silent on the right to life from conception to natural death....greater emphasis needs to be placed both on the relationship of the LCWR with the Conference of Bishops, and on the need to provide a sound doctrinal foundation in the faith of the Church...[There is a need to] review LCWR links with affiliated organizations, e.g. Network and Resource Center for Religious Life."
It is telling that Network and the Sisters of Saint Joseph appear to be targeting local Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick for criticism, while they were deafeningly silent during the tenure of his rabidly pro-abortion predecessor, Patrick Murphy.  Fitzpatrick's pro life record has been commendable.

Sincerely,



Saturday, June 16, 2012

"We need to flood newspapers with letters to the editor in support of Pennsylvania Senate Bill 3."

As per the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference, "Senate Bill 3 and House Bill 1977 would remove abortion funding from the state health care exchanges that will be created by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)."  Though each identifies himself as pro life, House Majority Leader Mike Turzai, Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi, and Governor Tom Corbett have failed to move SB 3 / HB 1977 forward and signed into law:

As explained by Philly Pro Life,

  • "PA Senate Bill 3 would allow Pennsylvania to opt out of abortion funding in the health insurance exchanges created by so-called health care reform. The bill passed the PA Senate, and the PA House OK'd a similar measure, HB 1977. Now, it's time for the House to OK final passage of SB 3. Pro-life Governor Tom Corbett has already pledged to sign the measure into law. Please call Majority Leader Mike Turzai's office at 717-772-9943 and urge him to run the bill.  We need to flood newspapers with letters to the editor in support of Pennsylvania Senate Bill 3."
As per Dr. James Dobson,  
    "The Obama administration will give Pennsylvania $160 million to set up a new 'high-risk' insurance program under a provision of the federal health-care legislation enacted in March.
    "It has quietly approved a plan submitted by an appointee of pro-abortion Gov. Edward Rendell under which the new program will cover any abortion that is legal in Pennsylvania.

    "The high-risk pool program is one of the new programs created by the sweeping health-care legislation, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, President Obama signed into law on March 23. The law authorizes $5 billion in federal funds for the program, which will cover as many as 400,000 people when it is implemented nationwide.

    "'The Obama Administration will give Pennsylvania $160 million in federal tax funds, which we’ve discovered will pay for insurance plans that cover any legal abortion,' said Douglas Johnson, legislative director for the National Right to Life Committee."

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

What Failure to Move Forward with SB 3 / HB 1977 is Bringing Upon Us

Gov Corbett, Sen Pileggi, and Rep Turzai:

As per Dr. James Dobson,  
    "The Obama administration will give Pennsylvania $160 million to set up a new 'high-risk' insurance program under a provision of the federal health-care legislation enacted in March.
    "It has quietly approved a plan submitted by an appointee of pro-abortion Gov. Edward Rendell under which the new program will cover any abortion that is legal in Pennsylvania.

    "The high-risk pool program is one of the new programs created by the sweeping health-care legislation, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, President Obama signed into law on March 23. The law authorizes $5 billion in federal funds for the program, which will cover as many as 400,000 people when it is implemented nationwide.

    "'The Obama Administration will give Pennsylvania $160 million in federal tax funds, which we’ve discovered will pay for insurance plans that cover any legal abortion,' said Douglas Johnson, legislative director for the National Right to Life Committee."
As per the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference, "Senate Bill 3 and House Bill 1977 would remove abortion funding from the state health care exchanges that will be created by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)."

  • This Thursday marks one entire year, since the Senate passed SB 3 (37 to 12)! 
  • Next Tuesday will mark six months, since HB 1977 passed the House (146 to 45)! 
Personally, your failure to move forward with SB 3 / HB 1977 makes me question the sincerity of your pro life positions and/or your competences for your respective positions.  In either case, this is disgraceful.

Sincerely,

Sunday, June 3, 2012

The Fortnight for Freedom / NFP Awareness Week

There are incredible connections between the USCCB's calls for The Fortnight for Freedom and for NFP Awareness Week, which - I believe - we would do well to better emphasize....

As per the Archdiocese's Office for Divine Worship and Respect Life,

"The United States Bishops’ invitation for 'a great hymn of prayer in our country,' from June 21 [i.e., the vigil of the Feasts of  Saint John Fisher and Saint Thomas More] through to July 4, will be parish based in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. All pastors, parish priests and deacons, along with those associated with them in the preparation of the Sacred Liturgy during these fourteen days, are encouraged to make use of the following ways to observe A Fortnight for Freedom.

    "• Use a petition in the Prayer of the Faithful each day at Mass, such as: For the protection of conscience rights and religious liberty, that all people of good will may work together against the increasing threats to these fundamental rights.
    • Encourage the daily praying of the Rosary after Mass, part of parish meetings, and in homes for the protection of Religious Freedom.
    • Encourage adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament for the protection of Religious Freedom.
    • Encourage the inclusion of this prayer for religious liberty in all meetings and assemblies in parishes.
      Prayer for Religious Liberty

      Almighty God, Father of all nations,
      for freedom you have set us free in Christ Jesus (Gal 5:1).

      We praise and bless you for the gift of religious liberty,
      the foundation of human rights, justice and the common good.

      Grant to our leaders the wisdom to protect
      and promote our liberties.

      By your grace may we have the courage to defend them,
      for ourselves and for all those who live in this blessed land.

      We ask this
      through the intercession of Mary Immaculate, our patroness,
      and in the name of your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ,
      in the unity of the Holy Spirit, with whom you live and reign,
      one God, for ever and ever.

      Amen
      ."
Coinciding with the anniversary of Pope Paul VI's courageous & prophetic Humanae Vitae  and the feast of Saints Joachim and Ann, the United States Bishops also designate July 22 to July 28 as Natural Family Planning Awareness Week.  Though we too often equate the Church's "vocation crisis" ONLY with dwindling numbers of priests and religious, Pope Paul VI realized that the vocation of marriage was under attack:

    "Marriage, then, is far from being the effect of chance or the result of the blind evolution of natural forces. It is in reality the wise and provident institution of God the Creator, whose purpose was to effect in man His loving design. As a consequence, husband and wife, through that mutual gift of themselves, which is specific and exclusive to them alone, develop that union of two persons in which they perfect one another, cooperating with God in the generation and rearing of new lives.
    "The marriage of those who have been baptized is, in addition, invested with the dignity of a sacramental sign of grace, for it represents the union of Christ and His Church....

    "Married love is also faithful and exclusive of all other, and this until death. This is how husband and wife understood it on the day on which, fully aware of what they were doing, they freely vowed themselves to one another in marriage. Though this fidelity of husband and wife sometimes presents difficulties, no one has the right to assert that it is impossible; it is, on the contrary, always honorable and meritorious. The example of countless married couples proves not only that fidelity is in accord with the nature of marriage, but also that it is the source of profound and enduring happiness [emphasis added].

    "Finally, this love is fecund. It is not confined wholly to the loving interchange of husband and wife; it also contrives to go beyond this to bring new life into being. 'Marriage and conjugal love are by their nature ordained toward the procreation and education of children. Children are really the supreme gift of marriage and contribute in the highest degree to their parents' welfare' (8)....

    "With regard to the biological processes, responsible parenthood means an awareness of, and respect for, their proper functions. In the procreative faculty the human mind discerns biological laws that apply to the human person. (9)

    "With regard to man's innate drives and emotions, responsible parenthood means that man's reason and will must exert control over them.

    "With regard to physical, economic, psychological and social conditions, responsible parenthood is exercised by those who prudently and generously decide to have more children, and by those who, for serious reasons and with due respect to moral precepts, decide not to have additional children for either a certain or an indefinite period of time....

    "From this it follows that they are not free to act as they choose in the service of transmitting life, as if it were wholly up to them to decide what is the right course to follow. On the contrary, they are bound to ensure that what they do corresponds to the will of God the Creator. The very nature of marriage and its use makes His will clear, while the constant teaching of the Church spells it out. (10)...

    "The Church...teaches that each and every marital act must of necessity retain its intrinsic relationship to the procreation of human life (12)....

    "This particular doctrine, often expounded by the magisterium of the Church, is based on the inseparable connection, established by God, which man on his own initiative may not break, between the unitive significance and the procreative significance which are both inherent to the marriage act.

    "The reason is that the fundamental nature of the marriage act, while uniting husband and wife in the closest intimacy, also renders them capable of generating new life—and this as a result of laws written into the actual nature of man and of woman. And if each of these essential qualities, the unitive and the procreative, is preserved, the use of marriage fully retains its sense of true mutual love and its ordination to the supreme responsibility of parenthood to which man is called. We believe that our contemporaries are particularly capable of seeing that this teaching is in harmony with human reason....

    "an act of mutual love which impairs the capacity to transmit life which God the Creator, through specific laws, has built into it, frustrates His design which constitutes the norm of marriage, and contradicts the will of the Author of life. Hence to use this divine gift while depriving it, even if only partially, of its meaning and purpose, is equally repugnant to the nature of man and of woman, and is consequently in opposition to the plan of God and His holy will....
    "We base Our words on the first principles of a human and Christian doctrine of marriage when We are obliged once more to declare that the direct interruption of the generative process already begun and, above all, all direct abortion, even for therapeutic reasons, are to be absolutely excluded as lawful means of regulating the number of children. (14) Equally to be condemned, as the magisterium of the Church has affirmed on many occasions, is direct sterilization, whether of the man or of the woman, whether permanent or temporary. (15)

    "Similarly excluded is any action which either before, at the moment of, or after sexual intercourse, is specifically intended to prevent procreation—whether as an end or as a means. (16)....

    "If...there are well-grounded reasons for spacing births, arising from the physical or psychological condition of husband or wife, or from external circumstances, the Church teaches that married people may then take advantage of the natural cycles immanent in the reproductive system and engage in marital intercourse only during those times that are infertile, thus controlling birth in a way which does not in the least offend the moral principles which We have just explained. (
    20)....

    "careful consideration should be given to the danger of this power passing into the hands of those public authorities who care little for the precepts of the moral law. Who will blame a government which in its attempt to resolve the problems affecting an entire country resorts to the same measures as are regarded as lawful by married people in the solution of a particular family difficulty? Who will prevent public authorities from favoring those contraceptive methods which they consider more effective? Should they regard this as necessary, they may even impose their use on everyone. It could well happen, therefore, that when people, either individually or in family or social life, experience the inherent difficulties of the divine law and are determined to avoid them, they may give into the hands of public authorities the power to intervene in the most personal and intimate responsibility of husband and wife....


    "It is to be anticipated that perhaps not everyone will easily accept this particular teaching. There is too much clamorous outcry against the voice of the Church, and this is intensified by modern means of communication. But it comes as no surprise to the Church that she, no less than her divine Founder, is destined to be a 'sign of contradiction.' (22) She does not, because of this, evade the duty imposed on her of proclaiming humbly but firmly the entire moral law, both natural and evangelical....

    "Everything...in the modern means of social communication which arouses men's baser passions and encourages low moral standards, as well as every obscenity in the written word and every form of indecency on the stage and screen, should be condemned publicly and unanimously by all those who have at heart the advance of civilization and the safeguarding of the outstanding values of the human spirit. It is quite absurd to defend this kind of depravity in the name of art or culture (
    25) or by pleading the liberty which may be allowed in this field by the public authorities....

    "And now We wish to speak to rulers of nations....We beg of you, never allow the morals of your peoples to be undermined. The family is the primary unit in the state; do not tolerate any legislation which would introduce into the family those practices which are opposed to the natural law of God....


    "beloved sons, you who are priests....it is your principal duty...to spell out clearly and completely the Church's teaching on marriage....

    "We turn Our mind to you, reverently and lovingly, beloved and venerable brothers in the episcopate, with whom We share more closely the care of the spiritual good of the People of God. For We invite all of you, We implore you, to give a lead to your priests who assist you in the sacred ministry, and to the faithful of your dioceses, and to devote yourselves with all zeal and without delay to safeguarding the holiness of marriage, in order to guide married life to its full human and Christian perfection....

    "man cannot attain that true happiness for which he yearns with all the strength of his spirit, unless he keeps the laws which the Most High God has engraved in his very nature" [emphases added].
It is my belief that our efforts to share the phenomenal truth about religious freedom, human life, and marriage/family/sexuality are sabotaged by
  • allowing pharmacy ads in parish bulletins (other than ads for Saint Clare Pharmacy, where it is my understanding that no abortifacients or contraceptives are sold), and
  • allowing physicians in Catholic hospitals who do not ascribe to Catholic medical ethics in their private practices.

The 10 Commandments

The Beatitudes (from "Jesus of Nazareth")

Christifideles Laici

Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church

Our representation in D.C....

Click the below image, to check on the status of federal legislation:
Click the below images, to ascertain what pro-life and pro-marriage/family legislation is being sponsored or co-sponsored (as well as what legislation is NOT being sponsored or co-sponsored):
https://www.congress.gov/member/brian-fitzpatrick/F000466?q={%22search%22:[%22brian+fitzpatrick%22]}&r=1

To check U.S. House votes:

To check U.S. Senate votes:

Contacts:

Bucks County in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Bucks County in the Pennsylvania Senate

Contacting Our Governor

717 787 2500 or governor@pa.gov.

Contacting Our Bishops