America Magazine, run by Jesuits, recently criticized the USCCB for their response to the Obama administration’s HHS mandate. The America editorial took the bishops to task for getting in to the fine policy details. Bishop Lori responds here. One excerpt:
Have I forgotten any other details we bishops shouldn’t be attending to? Well, I guess we’re policy wonks for wondering if the government has a compelling interest in forcing the Church to insure for proscribed services when contraception is covered in 90% of healthcare plans, is free in Title X programs, and is available from Walmart (generic) for about $10 a month. Pardon me also for wondering whether the most basic of freedoms, religious liberty, isn’t being compromised, not by a right to health care, but by a claim to “services” which regard pregnancy and fertility as diseases.
When administration officials and media flacks say “Catholic leaders approve of the HHS mandate,” this is what they are talking about. Organizations that call themselves “Catholic” and yet are in direct opposition to 100% of the members of the national conference of bishops thereby put themselves above the bishops in matters of faith and morals. That is indeed a precarious place to be.