With the economy sputtering and threats of war rising like smoke in the Middle East, why is everyone suddenly talking about contraception? Why was a Georgetown Law School student celebrated on Capitol Hill last week when she testified about her promiscuous sex life and demanded free contraception from a Catholic University? And more importantly, why are Protestant Christians sitting on their hands?
In a nutshell, the White House has issued an order that religious organizations cannot be exempted from particular demands of national healthcare even if those demands violate the clear teachings of the Church. After the initial outcry, the President modified his ruling slightly. But the bottom line is still the same: Catholic organizations must provide free contraception for their employees and students despite the fact that this contradicts their religious convictions.
You might ask, “Why should I care? Protestants have no religious objections to contraception. This is somebody else’s problem!” No, it’s not just their problem. The White House has tacitly nullified the First Amendment which prohibits the government from interfering in the practice of faith in this nation. And it’s not even the eleventh, or thirteenth, or fifteenth amendment we’re talking about. The First Amendment is so important that the rest of our historic Constitution could not have been adopted without it.
- If a new healthcare law can force Catholic Americans to violate their historic doctrines, then nothing is sacred.
- Tomorrow the ADA can force churches with 50 members to install all the costly improvements that banks and stadiums must provide for Americans with all varieties of disabilities. All those churches will be forced to close their doors.
- Civil Rights Law can be invoked to force churches to perform wedding ceremonies for gays, lesbians, atheists, threesomes, and any other permutation of marital union that comes down the pike.
Recently the White House called a meeting of Catholic bishops and leaders to “work out the wrinkles” in this Catholic Problem. The participating Catholic leaders immediately inquired if exemptions for religious groups were still “off the table.” Very quickly, they were informed they were. There would be no changes. Rather, White House aides actually quoted books and articles to argue Catholic theology with a room full of Catholic bishops! Federal employees were telling bishops what the Catholic Church really believes.
Friends, this is not just about contraception. It’s not just about healthcare. And it’s not just about Roman Catholics. This is about the First Amendment and the government’s right to give orders to Christians and churches. Are you really prepared to give up a freedom that has been guaranteed and protected in the nation since our founding?
Never forget what a Protestant named Martin Niemoller wrote from a Nazi prison: “When the Nazis came for the communists I remained silent; I was not a communist. When they locked up the social democrats, I remained silent ; I was not a social democrat. When they came for the trade unionists, I did not speak out; I was not a trade unionist. When they came for the Jews, I remained silent; for I wasn’t a Jew. When they came for me, there was no one left to speak out.”
They are coming for the Catholics today. The Protestants will be next. This advance of the Anti-Christ will not stop until the whole Church rises up.
Lift up the Cross!