Posts Tagged ‘Catholics’

April 1, 2016, “National Atheists Day”: Of Atheists, Restricting Religious Liberty, and “Complaining Christians”

April 1, 2016

7b2b9eba5179818a8336fbf20269a8d1The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.”- Psalm 14:1

Lifeway Research reports that

A growing number of Americans believe religious liberty is on the decline and that the nation’s Christians face growing intolerance. They also say American Christians complain too much.

Those are among the findings of a new study of views about religious liberty from LifeWay Research. Researchers surveyed 1,000 Americans in September 2013 and September 2015 and then compared the results.

Two-thirds (63 percent) say Christians face increasing intolerance, up from half (50 percent) in 2013.

A similar number (60 percent) say religious liberty is on the decline, up from just over half (54 percent) in 2013.

Forty-three percent say American Christians complain too much about how they are treated, up from 34 percent in 2013.

“More Americans worry the U.S. has a hostile environment for religious liberty,” said Ed Stetzer, executive director of LifeWay Research. “As this perception grows, some approve of it while others speak up against it.”

Religious liberty has become an increasingly contentious issue in American culture—with disputes over birth control, same-sex wedding cakes, headscarves at work, and prisoner’s beards.

The more recent LifeWay Research survey found faith plays a key role in how Americans view the state of religious liberty.

Two-thirds of Christians (64 percent) and those of other faiths (65 percent) say religious liberty is on the decline. Self-identified evangelicals (71 percent) and those who attend worship at least once a week (70 percent) are most likely to agree.

Catholics (56 percent) and non-evangelicals (55 percent) are more skeptical. So are Nones (46 percent).

“Christians are particularly sensitive to what they see as intolerance towards their faith,” said Stetzer. “But they share a common concern with people of other faiths—that religious liberty in general is declining. And this perception is growing rapidly.”

Age also played a role in how Americans view the state of religious liberty.

Less than half  (42 percent) of those 18 to 24 say religious liberty is on the decline. By contrast, 6 in 10 (62 percent) of those over 25 see a decline.

LifeWay Research also found non-Christians are less convinced that Christians face intolerance.

Less than half of those from other faiths (43 percent) and Nones (48 percent) agree when asked if intolerance towards Christians has increased.

By contrast, most Christians (70 percent), self-identified evangelicals (82 percent) and Protestants (74 percent) see more intolerance. So do two-thirds (76 percent) of those who attend services once a week or more.

Researchers found some signs that Americans are tired of arguments over religious liberty. A sizable number of Americans believe Christians’ complaints about how they are treated are excessive.

Among them:

38 percent of Christians
39 percent of Americans of other faiths
59 percent of Nones
53 percent of those who rarely or never attend worship
American Christians face a challenge, as the nation becomes more secular, said Stetzer. Calls for religious liberty may fall on increasingly deaf ears in the future.

“Most people now believe Christians are facing intolerance, however, a surprising large minority perceives Christians to be complainers,” said Stetzer. “Both of those facts will matter as Christians profess and contend for their beliefs without sounding false alarms around faux controversies. It won’t be easy to strike that balance.”

Really? Really?

C’mon now.

As John McEnroe says,

You can’t be serious.

(Look him up, boys and girls.)

At first glance, this article should be upsetting to the 74% of Americans, including myself, who, as described by the “cool” word of the Millennials,  self-identify as Christian Americans.

The fact of the matter is, no matter how some seek to restrict the Religious Liberty of Christian Americans, the death of Christianity in America has been greatly exaggerated.

“Organized Religion”, a term usually spoken in derision by those seeking to somehow impugn the generations-old practice of Christian Americans to be a member of and attend the weekly worship service of the denomination and church building of their choice, is being attacked constantly by Atheists, Liberals, and Progressives (but, I repeat myself) to further degrade the spiritual backbone of the “Shining City Upon a Hill”, as President Ronald Reagan referred to our country.

For what now seems like an eternity, those on the left side of Political Aisle, have focused their attention on “radically changing” America.

They soon realized that they simply could not do it through popular culture and educational indoctrination, inundating America’s children with both overt and subliminal imaging designed to countermand the Traditional American Values that they were being raised with, in normal American Households, out here in “Flyover Country”, otherwise known as America’s Heartland…or “the Red States”.

Modern Liberals soon figured out that the way to program Americans into believing that “all paths lead to God” and that cradle-to-grave Nanny-State Government were the new American Standards for living our daily lives, was to turn Christian American Houses of Worship away from being instructors of the Word of God and a sanctuary in which to worship Our Creator, to, instead, being purveyors of the joys of Popular Culture. Wednesday Night Bible Studies were soon replaced by Yoga Classes and Encounter Groups. Religious Leaders were soon quoting philosophy, instead of the Bible in their Sunday Morning Sermons.

And, instead of taking a stand against those things of the world which were directly opposed to what is found in God’s Word, these “new, enlightened” churches started standing up for the “right” of a woman to have her baby prematurely yanked out of her womb with a set of tongs, standing up for the right of Adam to “marry” Steve, when the Bible states that marriage is between a man and a woman, and standing up for the equality of all faiths, when the Son of God firmly states, in John 14:6, that

I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

So, is Christianity in America going to “fade away”?

Not any time soon.

Being filled with human beings, churches have made a lot of mistakes, However, they have also done a lot of good in the name of the Lord.

For example, the church I attend, houses a Food Pantry, operated in co-operation with other churches in our area, which feeds 2,000 people per month, counseling them, and getting them the assistance that they need.

Churches today have to walk a fine line.

The spiritual battle the influence of American Popular Culture and those seeking the Will of God in their lives, takes all the strength…and prayer, that Christians can muster.

Articles, such as the one which I quoted earlier, are usually written by Liberals, especially those found in a Liberal Publication like USA Today.

Modern Liberals seem to have great difficulty comprehending the role which Our Creator, the God of Abraham, played and plays in this Grand Experiment, known as the United States of America.

Why have Liberals ratcheted up their anti-Christian Vitriol and Negativity since January 21, 2009?

Why are they so focused on removing America’s Christian Heritage?

Well, as is usually my wont, I have been doing some “reckoning” about this.

It seems to this ol’ Southern Boy, living here in the Heartland, that America’s Christian Heritage and the very real fact of His influence in building and shaping America’s growth into the greatest country on the face of God’s Green Earth, not only stifles and interferes with Modern Liberals’ “anything goes”, “share the wealth”, “hive-mind”, “man is his own god” Political Ideology, but the reality of God’s very existence, somewhere deep in their miserable, bitter psyches, scares the mess out of them.

According to a Pew Forum Survey, more than 13 million Americans are self-described atheists and agnostics, comprising less than 6% of the U.S. public.

I have never understood Atheists, especially the so-called activists among them.

Our Constitution provides for Freedom of Religion.

According to the Supreme Court, in their Ruling abolishing School Prayer, Atheism is a religion, which the Americans who embrace this nihilism are free to practice.

So, why the continuous full-blown attack on the Faith which our Founding Fathers wrote so eloquently about, and which has sustained this “shining city on a hill” through times of internal and external strife?

In other words, why are activist Atheists (and Progressives) so intent to either limit or completely eliminate Christianity’s influence on everyday American Life?

Why don’t they attack the political/religious ideology of Islam with the same fervor?

The answer to this question is simple:  Cowards will always tell you whom they are afraid of. They will avoid them, like one avoids a child with Chicken Pox.

Additionally, they expect Christians to allow them to take control by “turning the other cheek.”

Evidently, they never read the scriptures which describe Jesus running the “money lenders” out of the temple, overturning tables, and expressing his righteous indignation in a way in which no one could mistake it for anything else.

Or, perhaps, it’s the overwhelming overestimation of their own intelligence, which results from ignoring the influence of the God of Abraham in their life.

So, what drives them in this “Unholy Crusade”?

Bitterness, emptiness, and an unfulfilled longing in their soul which they cannot put a finger on, is the only explanation.

Otherwise, why would they fight so hard against the influence of and worship of Someone they don’t personally believe in?

Until He Comes,

KJ

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Pope Attacks Trump for Promise to Build Wall to Protect Our Sovereignty. Vatican Wall Still Stands.

February 19, 2016

Vatican-wall8 But Jesus went to the Mount of Olives.

2 Now early in the morning He came again into the temple, and all the people came to Him; and He sat down and taught them. 3 Then the scribes and Pharisees brought to Him a woman caught in adultery. And when they had set her in the midst, 4 they said to Him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act. 5 Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do You say? 6 This they said, testing Him, that they might have something of which to accuse Him. But Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear.

7 So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” 8 And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. 9 Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. 10 When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?”

11 She said, “No one, Lord.”

And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.” – John 8: 1-11

In a related story…

Foxnews.com reports that

Pope Francis questioned Donald Trump’s Christianity Thursday over the Republican presidential hopeful’s plan to build a wall on the Mexican border, but the pontiff himself lives behind massive stone walls.

Speaking from Mexico as he departed from a weeklong tour in which he spoke before millions, His Holiness took a direct shot at Trump, who has made his plan to build a wall and make Mexico pay for it a centerpiece of his campaign.

“A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian,” Pope Francis said. “This is not in the Gospel.”

Trump supporters quickly took to the Internet, noting the irony of the pope’s comment.

One tweet read: ‘”People who build walls are not Christians,” said Pope Francis, who lives in Vatican City, which is essentially a giant fortress.”

The pope said he’d “give the benefit of the doubt” since he hasn’t heard Trump’s plan himself, according to AP, adding, “I say only that this man is not Christian if he has said things like that.”

Trump has proposed the border wall to combat illegal immigration. The developer, who is Presbyterian, shot back at the pope after having his faith questioned.

“For a religious leader to question a person’s faith is disgraceful,” Trump said in a statement. “I am proud to be a Christian and, as president, I will not allow Christianity to be consistently attacked and weakened, unlike what is happening now, with our current president.”

The Vatican’s walls, which do not completely surround the enclave, date back more than 1,000 years, to the time of Pope Leo IV, who commissioned the construction of what is known as the Leonine Wall following the sacking of Old St. Peter’s Basilica by Islamic Saracens in 846.

Regarding his comments concerning building a wall to keep out “immigrants”, the Pope left out a very important word: ILLEGAL.

The last bipartisan U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform happened during President ill “Bubba” Clinton’s tenure. Bubba appointed former congresswoman and Democratic icon Barbara Jordan as its chair. Jordan came from humble beginnings to become a lawyer and the first Southern black woman elected to the House of Representatives. A DEMOCRAT, she was a leader in the civil rights movement, a professor of ethics, a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and a world-class orator (two of her speeches are considered among the greatest of the 20th century). Her appointment gave the commission instant credibility. According to Jordan, she believed her responsibility as the head of the commission was to restore credibility to the U.S. immigration system. On the issue of illegal immigration, Jordan was very clear and succinct:

Unlawful immigration is unacceptable. Those who should not be here will be required to leave.

I understand that people want a better life for themselves and their children. We are all immigrants in this land, except for American Indians, and they got here by crossing the Bering Straight. But there is a huge difference between immigrating here legally and sneaking in illegally, between assimilating into an existing culture, and insisting on replacing a country’s existing culture with that of the country you left.

Do you want to have access to the blessings of American Citizenship, such as the right to attend our schools? Fine. Become an AMERICAN CITIZEN.

According to the website, churchauthority.org, the Pope has three main duties:

He is the Supreme Pastor.

That means that he represents Christ’s love and concern for every single individual. That is why the Pope’s priority lies in getting to know people, understanding how they live, listening to their interests and sharing their sufferings and their joys. On no account should the Pope allow his contact with ordinary people to be obstructed by a multitude of administrative duties.

He is the Unifier of the People of God.

Because of the international character of the Church, this will create many demands. The good of the world-wide Church and the autonomy of local Churches need to be balanced. That is why the Pope should guide and inspire the Central Synod of Bishops so that it can efficiently work out agreements and general Church policies.

He is the Prime Witness to Faith.

This includes both preaching [= announcing the message to non-Christians] and teaching [= explaining an element of Christ’s message in today’s context]. On very rare occasions the Pope is the main exponent of the infallible understanding of faith [=inerrancy] that is carried by the whole people of God. The Pope can only do so after listening to the People of God and discerning the faith they carry in their hearts.

Nowhere in his Job Description, does it say that the Pontiff gets to interfere in the Elections held in any nation, much less, those held in the Greatest Country on the Face of the Earth.

Pope Francis is the first Pope who represents the Far Left Political Viewpoint, which encompasses Modern Liberalism and the failed Marxist Political Ideology of Socialism.

He also comes from Latin America. It is not a coincidence that the recent invasion of underage illegal “immigrants” comes from that area, as well.

I had a poster on a Facebook Political Page scold me yesterday for pointing out Il Papa’s Political Ideology. I informed them that the Pope, while being “Christ’s Representative” on Earth, is not himself, the Son of God, and, is therefore, an imperfect man, like the rest of us.

I do not believe that Jesus would be a part of the Social Justice Movement, which is so popular among Liberal Churches, today. His was and is a soul-saving movement. One that still brings hundreds of thousand of people to individual salvation on this terrestrial ball every day. A movement that, in fact, was embraced by the founders of this cherished land.

The Pope is the Leader of the Catholic Church.

No disrespect meant, but shouldn’t he be more concerned about winning individual souls for God, than “saving the Collective” and advancing the Political Ideology of Marx?

Until He Comes,

KJ

Pope Francis Speaks to Congress, Urges “Compassion” For “Immigrants”

September 25, 2015

untitled (3)Francis spoke to Congress, yesterday.

The Daily Mail reports that

Pope Francis delivered a stinging blow to nativist conservatives bent on keeping illegal immigrants and Middle Eastern refugees out of the United States, saying Thursday in a landmark address to Congress that Americans should show compassion to immigrants of all stripes.

‘When the stranger in our midst appeals to us, we must not repeat the sins and the errors of the past,’ the Roman Catholic pontiff said. ‘We must resolve now to live as nobly and as justly as possible, as we educate new generations not to turn their back on our “neighbors” and everything around us.’

Speaking in English – a language he has learned only recently – Francis also dropped coded messages to conservatives about gay marriage and abortion, and made an impassioned plea for a left-leaning approach to capital punishment in an unprecedented visit to Capitol Hill by a sitting Pope.

‘I cannot hide my concern for the family, which is threatened, perhaps as never before, from within and without,’ Francis told a packed House chamber filled with legislators, Supreme Court justices and multiple presidential candidates.

‘Fundamental relationships are being called into question, as is the very basis of marriage and the family.’ 

And without mentioning abortion by name – or the name of the embattled domestic Planned Parenthood organization – Francis told lawmakers that the ‘Golden Rule … reminds us of our responsibility to protect and defend human life at every stage of its development.’

Francis spoke calmly but emphatically, never raising his voice as presidents often do in their State of the Union addresses to joint congressional sessions.

He was greeted by polite applause at certain points – particularly when he began reciting the Golden Rule but was interrupted before he could finish – ‘do unto others as you would have done unto you.’

Also, notably, applause broke out after these words: ‘The Golden Rule reminds us of our responsibility to protect and defend human life at every stage of development.’ 

But the applause was never raucous, a sign that members heeded party leaders’ directive not to applaud effusively or ‘glad-handle’ Francis if they got close to him.

Behind him on the raised speaker’s dais, close watchers got a different show during the speech, as both Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker John Boehner – both well-known emotional men – proved to be almost as watchable.

Throughout the speech, Biden gravely nodded his head and looked down as if in serious thought. But Boehner appeared to tear up at several points, and was openly crying later on the Speaker’s Balcony after the address.

Francis’s speech was sprinkled with references to American history, as the pontiff repeatedly referenced and occasionally quoted from President Abraham Lincoln, civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr., Catholic Worker Movement founder Dorothy Day and Cistercerian monk Thomas Merton.

The pontiff made clear his firmness on the sanctity of human life, not only the veiled reference to abortion but also his opposition to the death penalty. 

 Biden, a Roman Catholic who co-presided over the Joint Session of Congress as the constitutionally appointed president of the U.S. Senate, caused a stir this week by declaring that he believes life begins at conception.

But it’s Francis’ comments about immigrants that will be most sharply felt as the U.S. deals with the twin crises of Syrian refugees and an immigrant invasion from Mexico and Central America, both of which the Obama administration has taken steps to pacify by loosening America’s borders as a show of compassion.

‘Thousands of persons are led to travel north in search of a better life for themselves and for their loved ones in search of greater opportunities’ in in North America, he said. ‘Is this not what we want for our own children?’

‘We must not be taken aback by their numbers, but rather view them as persons, seeing their faces and listening to their stories, trying to respond as best we can to their situation. To respond in a way which is always humane, just and fraternal.’

WIthout naming Syria, the Muslim faith, the ISIS terror army, or any of the European nations that have hedged their bets again welcoming the tide of migrants displaced by Islamist armies, Francis noted ‘a refugee crisis of a magnitude not seen since the Second World War.’

‘This presents us with great challenges and many hard decisions,’ he said. 

Ultimately the shepherd of more than 1.2 billion Catholics counseled adherence to a Biblical do-unto-others philosophy.

‘Let us treat others with the same passion and compassion with which we want to be treated,’ he implored Congress. ‘Let us seek for others the same possibilities which we seek for ourselves. Let us help others to grow, as we would like to be helped ourselves.’

‘In a word, if we want security, let us give security; if we want life, let us give life; if we want opportunities, let us provide opportunities. The yardstick we use for others will be the yardstick which time will use for us.’ 

Francis did warn against religious fundamentalism of the type that drew ISIS into the fight that has displaced an estimated 4 million Syrians, mostly young men.

‘Our world is increasingly a place of violent conflict, hatred and brutal atrocities, committed even in the name of God and of religion,’ he said. 

‘We know that no religion is immune from forms of individual delusion or ideological extremism. This means that we must be especially attentive to every type of fundamentalism, whether religious or of any other kind.’

Since this happens to be my blog, please allow me to state the following, as I believe it to be:

Friends have asked me if I believe that Christ would be in favor of this “Social Justice” movement that has consumed some churches in America, replacing Christian Doctrine with a Modern Liberal Political Agenda. No. I do not believe that Jesus would be a part of the social justice movement. His was and is a soul-saving movement. One that still brings hundreds of thousand of people to individual salvation on this terrestrial ball every day. A movement that, in fact, was embraced by the founders of this cherished land.

Regarding his comments concerning “immigrants”, the Pope left out a very important word: ILLEGAL.

The last bipartisan U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform happened during President ill “Bubba” Clinton’s tenure. Bubba appointed former congresswoman and Democratic icon Barbara Jordan as its chair. Jordan came from humble beginnings to become a lawyer and the first Southern black woman elected to the House of Representatives. A DEMOCRAT, she was a leader in the civil rights movement, a professor of ethics, a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and a world-class orator (two of her speeches are considered among the greatest of the 20th century). Her appointment gave the commission instant credibility. According to Jordan, she believed her responsibility as the head of the commission was to restore credibility to the U.S. immigration system. On the issue of illegal immigration, Jordan was very clear and succinct:

Unlawful immigration is unacceptable. Those who should not be here will be required to leave.

I understand that people want a better life for themselves and their children.  We are all immigrants in this land, except for American Indians, and they got here by crossing the Bering Straight.  But there is a huge difference between immigrating here legally and sneaking in illegally, between assimilating into an existing culture, and insisting on replacing a country’s existing culture with that of the country you left.

Do you want to have access to the blessings of American Citizenship, such as the right to attend our schools? Fine. Become an AMERICAN CITIZEN.

Regarding the Syrian “Refugees”:

Why did the Pope only concentrate on the Muslim Refugees from Syria? Why did he not mention the Christian Refugees from Syria, presently in our country, whom Obama is sending back to their home country to most certainly be killed?

And, why did he not mention Pastor Saeed, and the other three prisoners, being held unjustly in Iran, when Obam and Kerry are lauding their “Genbtleman’s Agreement” with that country of Muslim Barbarians, giving them nuclear capability?

With all due respect, sir, Christ threw the money changers out of the temple. He hated sin. Yes, he spent time with sinners…TO LEAD THEM TO REPENTENCE. JESUS CHRIST DID NOT CONDONE SIN. BREAKING THE  LAWS OF A SOVEREIGN NATION IS COMMITING A SIN.

So is entering a country to commit violent acts, in order to spread Islam throughout the world.

I’m just saying.

Until He Comes,

KJ

 

The War Against Christianity: Obama Vs. The Little Sisters of the Poor

January 4, 2014

American FreedomWhen I was a child, I was taught by my parents to respect others. Quite frankly, I was raised to be a Southern Gentleman.

Any slip in saying “Yes, ma’am” or “No, sir” was met by a swift correction by my mother.

That same respect went out to everyone, regardless of their religion. I suppose that it was because my folks were members of America’s Greatest Generation, as I have recorded before, who all pulled together in the dark days of the Depression, the terrifying days of Word War II, and the uncertain days of the Cold War, when there was a nuke hidden around every corner.

They had to work hard, and with one another, for everything they had, and, in doing so, they became determined that their children would be raised with American values, principles, and ethics.

A couple of examples that I remember of that “mutual respect”, centered around my Mother. When I was in Second Grade, around 1965, she came down with severe Diabetes. Her doctor was a wonderful, old Jewish gentleman, whom my Mother had worked the Front Desk for.  He made sure that she got the best of care in the hospital, because she was not only his past employee, but his friend, as well.

While I was visiting my Mother in St. Joseph Hospital, in Memphis, TN, in walked this big, Black man, wearing a suit, with a red liturgical shirt and collar. His name was Parker, and he worked the loading dock at the 20 story Sears Building in Midtown Memphis, where my folks worked. He was another friend of their’s.

I remember his big old smile, and soft gentle demeanor, as his huge hands enveloped mine and my Mother’s, as he led us in a prayer for her recovery.

Not to beat a dead horse, but, please remember, this was Memphis, TN, in 1965.

Blows your Southern Stereotypes all to Hades, doesn’t it?

But, I digress…

Anyway, I was sitting at my desk in my office at work yesterday, when a Bing Update flashed across the top of my computer screen that President Barack Hussein Obama, still blowing $4,000,0000 OF OUR MONEY in Hawaii on his Family Vay-cay and his Administration, were urging the Supreme court to ignore Justice Sotomayor’s unexpected temporary injunction, stopping the Administration from forcing Catholic Institutions to provide free Birth Control, including abortiafacients, under Obamacare.

Politico.com summarizes the situation…

On New Year’s Eve, Sotomayor granted the Denver nursing home a last-minute, temporary reprieve from the health care law requirement that health coverage for employees include contraception. She will now have to decide whether to keep the temporary order in place, dissolve it, or take the issue to the other justices, who could decide to review the whole case in the coming months.

Justice Department lawyers in their response Friday said that the Little Sisters for the Poor Home for the Aged uses a Christian health insurer that is recognized as a church under U.S. employment law — and is already exempt from the Affordable Care Act contraception requirement.

“Applicants have no legal basis to … complain that it involves them in the process of providing contraceptive coverage,” government lawyers wrote to the court.“This case involves a church plan that is exempt from regulation” under a 1974 labor law that predates the president’s health care law.

The Little Sisters, in their reply to the government’s brief on Friday afternoon, said that signing a piece of paper allowing contraception — even if it doesn’t result in contraception being handed out —is itself a violation of their religious protections. That certification is part of the current legal process for religious non-profits that object to providing the contraception.

No matter which path Sotomayor takes, the central questions on contraception and religious nonprofits could eventually work their way through the legal system and return to the high court through this case or a different one.

The court has already agreed to take two separate challenges to the contraceptive requirement, but they involve religious owners of for-profit businesses, not religious nonprofits like this Denver nursing home. Dozens of religious-affiliated groups, dissatisfied with the Obama administration’s attempts to address their concerns, have petitioned federal courts to eliminate the requirement.

Anything the court does in the Little Sisters case could also affect nearly 500 religious non-profits that work with the Little Sisters and others on the lawsuit.

In all, more than 90 legal challenges have been filed around the country. A Supreme Court decision against the contraceptive rule would undercut but not cripple the health law. The birth control rule is a small piece of the overall law, but it’s been another source of ongoing political controversy for President Barack Obama’s signature law.

The Obama administration argues that employer health plans need to include contraception to ensure that women and their babies are healthy. Opponents of the policy — notably, the Catholic bishops — say that the administration is requiring some businesses to forgo religious beliefs against the use of contraception.

The case brought by the Little Sisters of the Poor Home for the Aged falls into an unexpected loophole in the ACA’s contraception coverage.

Earlier this year, the Obama administration tried through regulations to accommodate religious-affiliated nonprofits over contraception. It allowed groups like the Little Sisters to tell their insurance company or third-party administrator that they objected on religious grounds. The insurer or administrator would then have to provide contraceptives to the employees at no charge.

The premise was that an insurer or administrator would not have the same objection to providing such products. But the catch here is that the Little Sisters’ administrator — the Christian Brothers Employee Benefits Trust — is also run by a religious order.

The Christian Brothers, who joined the Little Sisters on the lawsuit, qualify as a church under employment law known as ERISA. And under that law, if they don’t want to provide contraception, the federal government has no recourse to force them to do so.

So, why is the Obama Administration so desperately trying to make Catholic Institutions provide services which are diametrically opposed tho the tenents of their faith?

I believe that it is all about respect for Americans’ Faith.

With this Administration, more so than any Administration which has gone before, the insensitivity and, downright blatant opposition to the role of Christianity in American Everyday Life, has led to the heretofore unthinkable situation of the Department of Justice and the American Court System being used as a bludgeon to keep us “uppity” Christians in line, so that we do not interfere with the plans of a Secular All-powerful State.

Sound familiar?

The Obama Administration’s ongoing war with the Catholic Church over providing these services is just one example of a deliberate movement to isolate Christianity from American’s Everyday Lives and regulate our relationship and following of Jesus Christ to a 2-hour window on Sunday Mornings.

However, try as it may, this Administration may have Pyrrhic Victories, but in the long run, it will not succeed.

Y’see….I know how this thing ends.  I’ve read The Book.

Until He Comes,

KJ 

Obamacare and the FFRF: Intolerance in Action

July 2, 2012

Those oh-so-tolerant individuals of the Freedom From Religion Foundation are at it again.  This time they’re down in Dallas:

A new billboard along Interstate 30 is upsetting some Catholics. It urges members to quit the church.

The billboard is part of a national atheist campaign by the Freedom from Religion Foundation. It also says the Roman Catholic Church should put women’s rights over bishops’ wrongs.

It’s a dig at dozens of federal lawsuits by Catholic dioceses including those in Dallas and Fort Worth. They want to do away with an Obama Administration mandate that requires employers, including church-owned institutions like hospitals, to provide employees insurance coverage for birth control, something the church doesn’t believe in.

“I don’t like them imposing their religious beliefs on other people who don’t have those beliefs,” said Terry McDonald with the DFW Coalition of Reason, a local atheist group.

The Dallas Diocese said it has been getting phone calls about the sign located along westbound I-30 near Highway 360.

“It’s all been women who’ve called in to say they were offended and upset by the billboard,” said Annette Gonzales Taylor with the Catholic Diocese of Dallas.

The diocese believes the Freedom from Religion Foundation is in the wrong lane.

“We’re very offended that an entity that has no knowledge or understanding of the church would erect a billboard of this nature,” Gonzales Taylor said. “The issue is truly about religious liberty and protecting the church’s right to adhere to our faith principals.”

McDonald questioned that response.

“When you read that there’s a high percentage of Catholic women who use birth control, I wonder who’s complaining,” he said.

Last week, the FFRF released a 30 second spot  featuring Julia Sweeney.  A humanist named Mriana wrote the following for GodDiscussion.com:

This week the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) released an ad featuring Julia Sweeney, which they call “great experiment to storm the “Bishops’ Bastille”” countering the Catholic bishops’ war on contraception. This ad is part of their “Stand Up for Religious Freedom” and “Quit the Catholic Church” campaigns.

The 30-second spot, according to the FFRF, received various responses thus far and it will run 1200 times during a two-week period.

We’re getting a lot of phone calls at the FFRF office in response. Some callers are giving our female receptionists a hard time, making unprintable comments. But others are our kind of folks, such as a grandmother in Pennsylvania who said she was raised Catholic but is “98 percent atheist,” and is disgusted by the Catholic Church’s attempt, as she put it, to “put canon law over civil law.”

A kind man living in a remote area of North Carolina caught us on MSNBC’s Hardball With Chris Matthews. Another North Carolinian called after seeing Julia’s spot on a rerun of the The Daily Show and said people have forgotten the need for a strict separation between state and church. I couldn’t help replying: “It might sound strange for an atheist to say this, but hallelujah, brother.” He laughed and said, “Amen, sister.”

FFRF’s Facebook page received 500 new likes over the weekend, but request that people join them if they really like them.

The FFRF lists the various shows that will feature the ad through July 4, and updates the page frequently. The FFRF listed the times the ad will air as expected times for when the ad will air and listed as Eastern Time on a 24-hour clock and they are guaranteed over 42 million viewers.

In the ad, Julia says:

“Hi, I’m Julia Sweeney, and I’m a cultural Catholic. I am no longer a believer and I even wrote a play about it called “Letting Go of God.” But I wanted to let you know that right now Catholic Bishops are framing their opposition to contraceptive coverage as a religious freedom issue. But the real threat to freedom is the Bishops, who want to be free to force their dogma on people who don’t want it. Please join the Freedom From Religion Foundation and help keep church and state separate. [FFRF’s name, toll-free number and website are displayed throughout the ad.]

Actually the Freedom From Religion Foundation and the Obama Administration have a lot in common.  The Administration doesn’t seem to care for Christians, in general, and Catholicism, in particular, much either.

Catholic.org reports that

Obamacare compels Catholics to participate in anti-life activities, no matter how much they are opposed to it. Not only is this evil, but it is coercive and tramples upon our God-given, First Amendment protected, right to freedom of religion and conscience.

How does this happen?

Obamacare considers contraceptives, sterilizations, abortifacients, and abortion as “preventative services” under its definition of “health care”. The underlying presumption is that pregnancy is a disease. When people pay into the Obamcare scheme, whether as taxpayers or through their insurance, their dollars will be used to finance these procedures, some of which must be provided for free to all women. The people have no choice – the individual mandate means everyone pays.

It is ironic that a national federalized healthcare plan would make anti-life procedures absolutely free while still requiring people to pay out-of-pocket for lifesaving procedures and medications.

Worse, there is no means to allow supposedly free people to opt out of paying into such plans. Now, even your parish priest must pay for insurance or pay a penalty that will one way or another go into a system that uses his money to fund anti-life procedures.

Of course the Bishops of the Catholic church have raised this point on behalf of all Catholics, other Christians and people of good will, but the Obama administration has ignored their pleas.

Per Gallup, 78% of Americans proclaim their Christianity, 92% believe in God, and Liberals are the smallest political ideology in the nation, consisting of only 21%, compared to 40% for Conservatives and 35% for Moderates.

So, once again, what we are experiencing is the “Tyranny of the Minority”.

I thought Liberals were supposed to be the tolerant ones?

What Part of “Freedom of Religion” Does Obama Not Understand?

May 27, 2012

William Peter Blatty, accomplished author (The Exorcist) is calling Georgetown University out.

Why?

The 1950 Georgetown University Graduate is tired of the secularization of the University, which includes a recent visit by HHS Secretary Kathleen Sibelius, Obamacare contributor and pro-abortion advocate.

On May 5, 2012, in a speech to American bishops, Pope Benedict XVI called on America’s Catholic universities to reaffirm their Catholic identity. The Pope noted the failure of many Catholic universities to comply with Blessed John Paul II’s apostolic constitution Ex corde Ecclesiae. The Pope said that preservation of a university’s Catholic identity “entails much more than the teaching of religion or the mere presence of a chaplaincy on campus.”

For 21 years now. Georgetown University has refused to comply with Ex corde Ecclesiaie (“From The Heart of the Church”), and, therefore, with canon law. And, it seems as if every month GU gives another scandal to the faithful! The most recent is Georgetown’s obtuse invitation to Secretary Sebelius to be a commencement speaker.

Each of these scandals is proof of Georgetown’s non-compliance with Ex corde Ecclesiae and canon law. They are each inconsistent with a Catholic identity, and we all know it. A university in solidarity with the Church would not do these prideful things that do so much harm to our communion.

Georgetown is being dishonest. Together, we need to end that! In very recent years, Georgetown has even created the impression that its Jesuit tradition can stand apart from its Catholic identity. I am told that in on-campus debates, students will divide over favoring either Jesuit or Catholic! After eight years of Jesuit education, – when Jesuits and their reputation were one and the same – I shudder at this deception. The great Jesuit theologian Avery Dulles anticipated and admonished his fellow Jesuit educators over this fomented confusion: “To be Jesuit is merely to be more intensely Catholic,” he said. Of course.

Many believe that to make Georgetown truly Catholic is to turn back the clock hands and somehow limit its very nature as a university, as if the notion of “Catholic” and “university” are new to each other, or inherently at odds. On the contrary, to make Georgetown “Catholic” is to move the clock forward; it is to make the University better than it now is! Of course, there are always those who are afraid of change, – who lack vision. They may need to step aside.

John Paul II exhorted us all to preserve for the Church the highest places of culture – our universities. Generations of alumni have long been seduced to “go along” by dinners, medals, and board seats (I accepted my John Carroll Medal too). We have all been negligent for too long: the laity, the clergy, and the bishops as well.

Blatty is not alone in his righteous indignation over the anti-life Healthcare Monster being imposed upon us by the Obama Administration and their Congressional sycophants.

Foxnews.com reports that:

Some of the most influential Catholic institutions in the country filed suit against the Obama administration Monday over the so-called contraception mandate, in one of the biggest coordinated legal challenges to the rule to date.

Claiming their “fundamental rights hang in the balance,” a total of 43 plaintiffs filed a dozen separate federal lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of the requirement. Among the organizations filing were the University of Notre Dame, the Archdiocese of New York and The Catholic University of America.

The groups are objecting to the requirement from the federal health care overhaul that employers provide access to contraceptive care. The Obama administration several months ago softened its position on the mandate, but some religious organizations complained the administration did not go far enough to ensure the rule would not compel them to violate their religious beliefs.

A statement from the University of Notre Dame said the requirement would still call on religious-affiliated groups to “facilitate” coverage “for services that violate the teachings of the Catholic Church.”

“The federal mandate requires Notre Dame and similar religious organizations to provide in their insurance plans abortion-inducing drugs, contraceptives and sterilization procedures, which are contrary to Catholic teaching,” the statement said.

Rev. John Jenkins, the president of Notre Dame, said in a message to the campus that the filing “is about the freedom of a religious organization to live its mission, and its significance goes well beyond any debate about contraceptives.”

The contraception rule does include an exemption for religious organizations — but that exemption does not cover many religious-affiliated organizations like schools and charities. Complaints about the narrowly tailored exemption prompted a stand-off between the Obama administration and religious groups earlier this year. As a compromise, the administration said insurers — and not the religious-affiliated organizations themselves — could be required to offer contraceptive coverage directly.

But many organizations were not satisfied with the plan. John Garvey, president of Catholic University, said in a statement Monday that “such a revision would not solve our moral dilemma.” He argued that the cost of contraceptive coverage would still be “rolled into the cost” of a university insurance policy.

“In the end the university, its employees and its students will be forced to pay for the prescriptions and services we find objectionable,” he said.

University of Notre Dame Law Prof. Richard Garnett said in a statement that the mandate could affect a range of religious institutions, including “schools, health care providers and social welfare agencies.”

On a separate track, officials at a Florida Catholic university decided Monday to drop student health care coverage, becoming the second school this month to make that call. The decision at Ave Maria University was based in part on objections to the contraception rule, but also on projected increased premium costs tied to new rules in the federal health care overhaul.

While I am not Catholic, as a Christian American Conservative, I applaud the stand made by these People of Faith.

For those of you who, like the president, do not understand, the phrase is “Freedom of Religion”.

Not “Freedom from Religion”.