Daily Archives: April 3, 2009

From the USCCB

Mark Shea has posted an open letter to pro-life bloggers from Deirdre McQuade at the USCCB, asking us to post a banner ad (to the right) promoting the last 6 days to publicly comment to the HHS on physician’s conscience rights (see previous post).

Click on the banner ad to the right to contribute to this important cause.

My Letter to HHS on Conscience Rights

Since the days of Hippocrates, freedom of conscience has been an integral aspect of the medical profession. Every day, physicians make decisions that are based as much on ethics as on science. Today, a positivist and utilitarian approach to medical ethics has led to the elevation of “science” above ethics: whatever serves the perceived need of “scientific advancement” comes to override any ethical considerations.

Indeed, until recently, the refusal to perform abortions at all was considered a fundamental tenet of the authentic medical profession. In just a few short generations, however, the rules have been completely inverted so that many in society, including some in our government, are trying to require all medical professionals to provide abortion services (or refer them), forcing some doctors to violate not only their personal morals but the Hippocratic Oath itself.

Again, doctors routinely make decisions based upon ethics. A doctor may feel that a patient with chronic pain is becoming too dependent upon pain killers. A doctor may refuse to perform a particular procedure for fear of the risk to the patient’s health. I have never had a situation where I’ve been able to compel a doctor to do something that the doctor felt was against his or her professional judgement. It is unclear why, in this one area, physicians are to be forced to go against their professional medical and ethical judgements. It is unclear why people find it so difficult to just find a different doctor or pharmacist, the way anyone else does in that situation.

Professional conscience rights for doctors are a direct corollary to the conscience rights of patients and the First Amendment rights of all Americans. Let the free market reign. If certain patients want abortions and contraception, let those patients go to another service provider. Those of us whose consciences object to these practices need to have access to providers we can, in good conscience, support.

My wife refuses to go to any OB/Gyn who provides abortions. We are Catholics who practice Natural Family Planning. For all the talk of “reproductive choice,” we find little or no support among medical professionals for our particular “choice.” We have always gone to “pro-life”, non-abortion practicing physicians, but every OB/Gyn my wife has seen has had a condescending attitude towards NFP, and everyone but one has strongly pressured her to use birth control pills. Does this not constitute forcing their ethical judgements upon patients? NFP is proven to be at least as effective as the birth control pill, if not more. The newer Marquette Method has the potential to be 100% effective. Yet doctors and nurses simply say, with deep-seated contempt, “Rhythm doesn’t work,” and refuse to listen to the science in this case.

We want the choice, as a couple, to seek out medical practitioners who do not engage in abortion or contraception, or who at least will treat our “reproductive choice” with respect. As patients and as parents, we refuse to receive any treatment derived from embryonic stem cell research or fetal tissue research. This includes conscientious objection to certain vaccinations. It is very difficult to find pediatricians who support our conscience rights as parents. Removing the conscience rights of physicians will, in turn, take away our conscience rights, as well.

Many Americans are concerned that the principal agenda of the party that currently holds the presidency and majority in both houses of Congress is to destroy our fundamental right of conscience, our first amendment freedom of religion. We are deeply afraid of being forced to violate our most basic values, and this motion to take away the conscience rights of medical practitioners seems to be the first step towards such a “slippery slope.”

It would seem that those who claim to be “pro-choice” would support the individual freedom of choice of both professionals and patients.

Sincerely,
John C. Hathaway

Iowa legalizes same sex "marriage" by Judicial tyranny

When are we going to remember that the US Constitution specifically assigns legislatoin to legislatures and not to the Courts?

"Can’t we all just get along?"

Thomas Merton recounts in Seven Storey Mountain how one of his English private school teachers once said that being a Christian is the same as being a Gentleman.

Manners are good, but, as the recent discussion of pro-life “rhetoric” shows, many Christians are mistaking civility for virtue. Part of this is the “What Would Jesus Do?” mentality, the 19th Century innovation according to which Jesus was somehow a “nice guy.”

Let’s look at what the Gospel of Luke has to say on the subject (Douay-Rheims).

34 And Simeon blessed them, and said to Mary his mother: Behold this child
is set for the fall, and for the resurrection of many in Israel, and for a sign
which shall be contradicted; 35 And thy own soul a sword shall pierce, that, out
of many hearts, thoughts may be revealed.
Luke 2:34-35

[John the Baptist] said therefore to the multitudes that went forth to
be baptized by him: Ye offspring of vipers, who hath shewed you to flee from the
wrath to come? (Luke
3:7)

John the Baptist wasn’t afraid of condemning political figures for their sins–even the private ones:

But Herod the tetrarch, when he was reproved by him for Herodias, his brother’s wife, and for all the evils which Herod had done; 20 He added this also above all, and shut up John in prison. (Luke 3:19-20).

Jesus is willing to offend the people:

24 And he said: Amen I say to you, that no prophet is accepted in his own country. 25 In truth I say to you, there were many widows in the days of Elias in Israel, when heaven was shut up three years and six months, when there was a great famine throughout all the earth.
26 And to none of them was Elias sent, but to Sarepta of Sidon, to a widow woman. 27 And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of Eliseus the prophet: and none of them was cleansed but Naaman the Syrian. 28 And all they in the synagogue, hearing these things, were filled with anger. (Luke 4:24-28).

And some of the Pharisees said to them: Why do you that which is not lawful on the sabbath days? (Luke 6:2)

13 Woe to thee, Corozain, woe to thee, Bethsaida. For if in Tyre and Sidon had been wrought the mighty works that have been wrought in you, they would have done penance long ago, sitting in sackcloth and ashes. 14 But it shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the judgement, than for you. 15 And thou, Capharnaum, which art exalted unto heaven, thou shalt be thrust down to hell. 16 He that heareth you, heareth me; and he that despiseth you, despiseth me; and he that despiseth me, despiseth him that sent me. (Luke 10:13-16).

29 And the multitudes running together, he began to say: This generation is a wicked generation: it asketh a sign, and a sign shall not be given it, but the sign of Jonas the prophet. 30 For as Jonas was a sign to the Ninivites; so shall the Son of man also be to this generation.
31 The queen of the south shall rise in the judgment with the men of this generation, and shall condemn them: because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and behold more than Solomon here. 32 The men of Ninive shall rise in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it; because they did penance at the preaching of Jonas; and behold more than Jonas here. (Luke 11:29-32).

25 And there went great multitudes with him. And turning, he said to them: 26 “If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. 27 And whosoever doth not carry his cross and come after me, cannot be my disciple.” (Luke 14:25-27).

Jesus openly criticizes people, using language that might be considered “uncivil” or “mean”:

24 But woe to you that are rich: for you have your consolation.
25 Woe to you that are filled: for you shall hunger. Woe to you that now laugh: for you shall mourn and weep.
26 Woe to you when men shall bless you: for according to these things did their fathers to the false prophets. (Luke 6:24-26)

37 And as he was speaking, a certain Pharisee prayed him, that he would dine with him. And he going in, sat down to eat. 38 And the Pharisee began to say, thinking within himself, why he was not washed before dinner.
39 And the Lord said to him: Now you Pharisees make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter; but your inside is full of rapine and iniquity. 40 Ye fools, did not he that made that which is without, make also that which is within? 41 But yet that which remaineth, give alms; and behold, all things are clean unto you.
42 But woe to you, Pharisees, because you tithe mint and rue and every herb; and pass over judgment, and the charity of God. Now these things you ought to have done, and not to leave the other undone. 43 Woe to you, Pharisees, because you love the uppermost seats in the synagogues, and salutations in the marketplace. 44 Woe to you, because you are as sepulchres that appear not, and men that walk
over are not aware.
45 And one of the lawyers answering, saith to him: Master, in saying these things, thou reproachest us also. 46
But he said: Woe to you lawyers also, because you load men with burdens which they cannot bear, and you yourselves touch not the packs with one of your fingers. 47 Woe to you who build the monuments of the prophets: and your fathers killed them. 48 Truly you bear witness that you consent to the doings of your fathers: for they indeed killed them, and you build their sepulchres. 49 For this cause also the wisdom of God said: I will send to them prophets and apostles; and some of them they will kill and persecute. 50 That the blood of all the prophets which was shed from the foundation of the world, may be required of this generation, 51 From the blood of Abel unto the blood of Zacharias, who was slain between the alter and the temple: Yea I say to you, It shall be required of this generation. 52 Woe to you lawyers, for you have taken away the key of knowledge: you yourselves have not entered in, and those that were entering in, you have hindered. 53 And as he was saying these things to them, the Pharisees and the lawyers began violently to urge him, and to oppress his mouth about many things, 54 Lying in wait for him, and seeking to catch something from his mouth, that they might accuse him. (Luke 11:37-54).

Everyone knows the Parable of the Talents in Luke 19, but how many people know how the parable ends?

26 But I say to you, that to every one that hath shall be given, and he shall abound: and from him that hath not, even that which he hath, shall be taken from him. 27 But as for those my enemies, who would not have me reign over them, bring them hither, and kill them before me. (Luke 19:26-27).

In the following sentence, this “nice,” “civil” Savior is speaking to His own Apostles:

And Jesus answering, said: O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you, and suffer you? Bring hither thy son. (Luke 9:41).

And the passage that liberal priests love to second-guess:

51 Think ye, that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, no; but separation. 52 For there shall be from henceforth five in one house divided: three against two, and two against three. 53 The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against his father, the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother, the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. 54 And he said also to the multitudes: When you see a cloud rising from the west, presently you say: A shower is coming: and so it happeneth: 55 And when ye see the south wind blow, you say: There will be heat: and it cometh to pass.
56 You hypocrites, you know how to discern the face of the heaven and of the earth: but how is it that you do not discern this time? 57 And why even of yourselves, do you not judge that which is just? 58 And when thou goest with thy adversary to the prince, whilst thou art in the way, endeavour to be delivered from him: lest perhaps he draw thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the exacter, and the exacter cast thee into prison. 59 I say to thee, thou shalt not go out thence, until thou pay the very last mite. (Luke 12:51-59).

Homeschooling is illegal in Brazil

We are told over and over how, allegedly, the Catholic Church is in favor of socialism, in spite the the fact that, for approximately 200 years between the foundation of socialism and Vatican II, everyone know socialism and Catholicism were bitter enemies.

We’re told that liberation theology is OK, if not laudable, that it is not merely Marxism disguised as Catholicism.

We’re told that Brazil’s Catholic population, highly influenced by both liberation theology and the Charismatic Renewal, is a dynamic model to be followed.

However, in this allegedly “Catholic” country, a family who practice homeschooling–which embodies the Church’s teachings on subsidiarity–are being prosecuted for “intellectual neglect.” Even though their eldest children, 13 and 14, have both successfully passed law school admissions exams, and their children have passed all state tests that have been thrown at them in this legal process, the parents are still being fined huge amounts of money and ordered to send their children to public school. The parents keep refusing. They are now at the highest appeal level, and, if they lose, their children will be taken away from them, and they will be thrown in prison.

Please pray (and, if possible), advocate for these “white Martyrs”

Michael O’Brien writes an article on the New World Order

Michael O’Brien, author the _Father Elijah_ series and _Landscapes with Dragons_, has written an article on how the European Union sets the groundwork for a global Superstate.

Meanwhile, Fr. Alphonse de Valk , editor of Catholic Insight Magazine, has written a summary of Obama’s anti-Christian actions in his first 50 days, arguing that Obama is a greater threat to Christianity than the Russian Revolution of 1917.

Excommunicated Brazilian mother indicted

The mother of the nine-year-old girl who was excommunicated for having her grandchildren aborted has now been indicted for neglect in allowing the sexual abuse of her daughter.