In anticipation of the Solemnity of All Saints
On Wednesday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R.1314, the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015:
- "The House of Representatives voted 266-167 Wednesday to approve a budget deal....The measure amounts to one final package crafted by House Speaker John Boehner with other legislative leaders and President Barack Obama....The deal also clears the plate for GOP speaker nominee Paul Ryan, who surprised some conservatives Wednesday when he announced he would support the measure. The deal was approved as 79 Republicans joined with 187 Democrats to easily clear the number of votes needed to send the measure to the Senate...." (House approves two-year budget deal, CNN, 10/28/15).
On Thursday, former Republican presidential candidate Alan Keyes posed a provocative question: "Is The GOP’s Anti-Planned Parenthood Indignation Just Posturing?"
- "....Had they been serious about defunding Planned Parenthood, the GOP’s quisling leaders would have dealt with the defunding issue as part of the legislation required to fund the U.S. Government as a whole. That way, to defend the abortion cult Obama would have had to veto the funding legislation, starting the countdown toward a government shutdown. The GOP quislings want pro-life votes, but they do not in fact share the pro-life voter’s commitment to the standard of God-endowed unalienable right...."
The State Marriage Defense Act, the First Amendment Defense Act, and the the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015While "politically incorrect," the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops continues to support the State Marriage Defense Act and the First Amendment Defense Act. In our current political atmosphere, however, co-sponsoring the State Marriage Defense Act (HR 824, S 435) and/or the First Amendment Defense Act (HR 2802, S 1598) requires courageous character. Two extremely noteworthy observations:
- EVERY House co-sponsor of the State Marriage Defense Act (See blue rectangles below.) voted AGAINST HR 1314.
- House co-sponsors of the First Amendment Defense Act (See yellow highlights.) overwhelmingly voted AGAINST HR 1314.
Materials sadly absent from most parish bulletins, websites, and bulletin boards:
- The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference's "alerts"
- The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' "Alerts Central"
- the "National Committee for the Human Life Amendment" (NCHLA), and that
- "Action alerts for issues related to immigration reform can be found through the USCCB-led Catholic coalition, "Justice for Immigrants.)
The following sites also deserve your consideration:
And in the news....
- Letter to
Senator McConnell, Senator Reid, Speaker Boehner, and House Minority
Leader Pelosi, in support of Representative Chis Smith's HR 1150 (Ken
Starr, Archbishop Chaput, Alan Dershowitz, Matthew Franck, Maryann
Glendon, Senator Joseph Lieberman, Bishop William Murphy, Pastor Rick
Warren, Cardinal Wuerl and others, 7/14/15).
"We write as a diverse group of religious leaders, public intellectuals and scholars to urge Congressional action on the issue of international religious persecution that threatens people of faith worldwide and our national security.... We are witnessing a tragic, global crisis in religious persecution, violence, and terrorism, with dire consequences for religious minorities and for the national security of the United States....H.R. 1150 would...give Ambassador Saperstein the status that other ambassadors at large at the Department of State enjoy, the authority to develop an interagency strategy to protect global religious freedom, and the resources he needs to implement that strategy. It would also mandate training for all foreign service officers, deputy chiefs of mission, and country ambassadors. This training would ensure that our diplomats fully understand and can effectively defend the free expression of religion worldwide, the enduring value of religious freedom and its relationship to national security, and how to advance the cause of religious liberty in our foreign policy...."
- "Into the Breach: An Apostolic Exhortation to Catholic Men, My Spiritual Sons in the Diocese of Phoenix" (Bishop Olmstead, 9/29/15)
- "Statement Calling for Constitutional Resistance to Obergefell v. Hodges" (American Principles Project, 10/8/15)
- "the marriage act purged of impurities is the nearest thing to the beatific vision we can know....To offer the suffering of celibacy, temporary or permanent, to the Lord is to make use, in the best possible way, of man's greatest joy " (10/21/15)
- "....the PA House of Representatives could soon vote on a proposed Constitutional Amendment which would strip away your right to vote for appellate judges. House Bill 1336...would take away your right to vote for judges for the PA Supreme Court, the Superior Court, and the Commonwealth Court....Please contact your state representative and tell him or her you don't want your right to vote for judges taken away....." (Pa Pro Life Federation, 10/21/15)
- "‘It’s genocide’ - US Congress challenged over Christian victims of ISIS" (Mercator.net, 10/15/15)
"Members of Congress introduced a resolution...to label the atrocities committed by the Islamic State against Christians and other religious minorities 'genocide'....Call it what it is, name it, and especially declare that it is genocide, says Princeton Professor Robert George, Chairman of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom....citizens in the US [need] to call on their Members of Congress...to support two pieces of urgent legislation in the House of Representatives" (As of 10/26/15, Representative Fitzpatrick is NOT among the 107 co-sponsors of H.R. 1150; Fitzpatrick is NOT among the 144 co-sponsors of H Con Res 75.).