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US Catholics Dismayed by Obama Administration Ruling


Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of the US Department of Health and Human Services (AP)

Catholics in the United States have reacted with dismay after the Obama administration turned down repeated requests from Catholic bishops, hospitals, schools and charitable organisations to revise its religious exemption to the requirement that all health plans cover contraceptives and sterilisation free of charge.

Instead, Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of the US Department of Health and Human Services, announced yesterday that non-profit groups that do not provide contraceptive coverage because of their religious beliefs will get an additional year “to adapt to this new rule”.

“This decision was made after very careful consideration, including the important concerns some have raised about religious liberty,” Mrs Sebelius said. “I believe this proposal strikes the appropriate balance between respecting religious freedom and increasing access to important preventive services.”

But Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan of New York, president of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), said the Obama administration had “drawn an unprecedented line in the sand” with the decision.

“The Catholic bishops are committed to working with our fellow Americans to reform the law and change this unjust regulation,” he added. “We will continue to study all the implications of this troubling decision.”

Mrs Sebelius announced the mandate and a narrow religious exemption to it on August 1, 2011. Under the plan, after August 1 this year, new or significantly altered health plans will be required to provide all Food and Drug Administration-approved contraceptives, including some that can cause abortions, without co-pays or deductibles as part of preventive health care for women. [More]


Catholic Herald



  1. Charles Bolser says:

    There is no president of the United States History that has please all of the people all of the time, inclunding Obama, Nixon, Ford, Regan, Bush I & II, etc. The Separation of Church and State is and has been in effect for several hundred years and works fairly well – and it does not seem that we depend on the approval or diaapproval of any bishop to decide who to vote for. There is more than one issue at stake at all levels of Government and all must be evaluated – democrat or republican – conservative or liberal – we all have a voice and a stake – and are all welcome at the table – we are one Nation in all of our God given diversity.

  2. Christy says:

    I’m saddned by his responce but look what the Repl. have to offer!!!

  3. Dillon Thomas says:

    How can any self respecting cathholic not be offended by obama and any decision he has made. the church endorsed obama and got you to vote for him now your not happy about his decisions when you knew full well what he was going to do before the election. All you democratic catholic chumps are getting what you deserve.


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