Sunday, February 12, 2012


What do you believe in - at your core? 

Besides free fabric for all (because that would just be awesome).

Perfect points

"We pray, no longer silently but as a great number. 
We enlighten each other. 
We carry each other along. 
We depend on our faith in Jesus."

--Pope John Paul II

Have you heard? Perhaps you have, and either heartily agree with the HHS mandate or are neutral. You can not afford to be. What are your core beliefs? And can you trust that you will be permitted to hold onto them?

Most of you aren't one of my FB friends that has been flooded with blog links and comments the last 3 weeks.  So here's an entertaining summary of this crazy, just as it was starting.
An Open Letter to President Barack Obama Concerning Recent Tyranny (With Pictures!)
The Obama administration has just told the Catholics of the United States, “To Hell with you!”  Bishop David Zubik of the Diocese of Pittsburgh.
The media would like to make this into a Women's Health issue - and pit it against a bunch of old, out of touch Catholic bishops.

It is not.  

This is about a central teaching of the Catholic church and Obama's demand that we figure out how to violate our consciences within the next year.

"Our country is unique in the world because it was established on the basis of an idea: that we are all endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights -- in other words, rights that are conferred not by a king or a president or a Congress, but by the Creator himself. The state protects these rights, but it doesn't grant them," McConnell said.

"Our founders believed so strongly that the government should neither establish a religion nor prevent its free exercise that they listed it as the very first item in the Bill of Rights,"

A slightly similar scenario?  There are so many homeless in America, and Obama has decided that it is a right that they are housed inside every night.  Each public building and church must be open to area homeless each night for shelter.  The Catholic church does this in our area, so that seems good to me.  But the Mormon leaders protest that they must be excluded - their big, beautiful temples are sacred to them.  OK - says Obama - we'll make a slight change.  Don't worry about opening your temple doors, we will post an official at each and open the doors for you.  You don't have to be around, see - all good.  Not exactly the same, but just as nuts!  It's the idea of the government saying your religious beliefs are null, suck it up we really don't care.

Because I'm a bit obsessive and read everything, I happened to find The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, and their report on Laos in 2011.   It recommends that the US "Initiate technical assistance and human rights programs that support the goals of protecting and promoting religious freedom."

Among other issues, USCIRF is upset that Laos authorities have used threats to force people to 'abandon beliefs and practices the authorities consider “backward.” '

Perhaps we must turn the USCIRF on our current administration. Because this is exactly what they are trying to do to the Catholic Church and any other person whose beliefs are contrary to their mandate.

Let's just admit that it's economically wrong as well:  The Wall Street Journal (full article):
Critics are missing the main point. There are good reasons that your car-insurance company doesn't add $100 to your premium and then cover oil changes.
Perhaps you don't buy in to the Catholic view on birth control.  Honestly, a bunch of those who consider themselves Catholic don't either - Humanae Vitae can be hard to understand and without a doubt is contrary to the whims of society.  Regardless, we are to follow the Magisterium and work to understand it even when it is hard.  But here's a secular view from the Business Insider (full article):
Here's the thing, though: the Catholic Church is the world's biggest and oldest organization. It has buried all of the greatest empires known to man, from the Romans to the Soviets. It has establishments literally all over the world, touching every area of human endeavor. It's given us some of the world's greatest thinkers, from Saint Augustine on down to René Girard. When it does things, it usually has a good reason. Everyone has a right to disagree, but it's not that they're a bunch of crazy old white dudes who are stuck in the Middle Ages.
There isn't a single thing they can say to make me think this is truly about Women's Health.  (This one is pretty funny and on target.  The only thing they missed was how many copays women and men are going to cough up when the free pills (condoms are expensive dude! go for the free stuff) have left them vulnerable to the rampant STDs currently out there.)  In their first release, The White House actually quoted a study:
The National Business Group on Health estimated that it would cost employers 15 to 17 percent more not to provide contraceptive coverage than to provide such coverage, after accounting for both the direct medical costs of potentially unintended and unhealthy pregnancy and indirect costs such as employee absence and reduced productivity. 
Perhaps employers should not hire women at all?  Evidently they are costly and irresponsible ones that want a family will have a reduced productivity.

For those that are interested, a detailed outline of the Bishops' firm commitment to rescind the HHS mandate after the insulting 'accommodation' on Friday.

We are raging mad.  There comes a time when you have to stand up and own what you believe.  And not be afraid to put it out there.



Mary P said...

Thank you Angela. I hate that people say it is a Republican thing or a woman's health thing. So ingratiating. Catholicism is not about political parties. Plus pills for all doesn't address the fact that there are side effects and risks to taking drugs when you are not sick!The There are so many things about this that infuriate me. No one should be forced to violate their core beliefs, even if you disagree with them.

Kigwit said...

I appreciate you speaking up Angela. People need to wake up and realize that this is the thin end of the wedge. If we do not stop with one of our first liberties what is next? Right to assemble? Right to Free Speech?

This isn't a womens issue at all. This is about the Rights that were granted us by our Creator-not the current administration.

Ariane said...

Thank you for sharing your beliefs. I'm not American, but totally agree with you on this one!!!

cakegirl said...

You have every right to say whatever you want on your quilting blog. And I have the right to stop reading.

JaneRH said...

I don't know all the details that the administration is asking the Catholic medical centers to do...but I do know this: if these medical centers are accepting federal money to run programs (along with the sizeable tax break they already get from being a religious institution) they should have to comply with the law. Nope, I'm not Catholic. Will be interesting to see what happens...haven't seen much 'outrage' in the media from American Catholics as yet.

Shayla Sharp said...

I agree Angela--it's not about women's health, it's about control. Control of beliefs, of freedom, of population. I remember studying this in college on how the progressive agenda included population control and elimination of "archaic" belief systems. All religions should stand together on this one--or they won't have a chance later.

Brynwood Needleworks said...

God Bless you for speaking out, Angela.

leigh said...

My hubs told me about this today and I was pretty shocked. And I totally agree with you, although I'm not catholic. I hope everything ends up going the right way.

Also - about the church/homeless issue - I haven't heard about it, but we (Mormon's) also have churches for Sunday worship that aren't the same as temples. I wonder if they're using those for the homeless as well?

Shanley said...

Wait, what? We are forcing women to take pills? No, no we aren't.
Ah well, it's your blog, your opinion. I respectfully disagree.

gale said...

Love this post! Thank you for speaking out.

angela said...

Thank you for this post, and your bravery to say the things alot of us won't say. As a US citizen, I never thought I would be afraid of my government.

angela said...

And if you think forcing the Catholic church to provide birth control isn't overrreaching, what will you think when your insurance premiums go up exponentially because the administration's way out of this mess they created is to force the insurance companies to provide it for free to those who cannot pay for it? What's next, mandatory sterilization of those the government feels are unfit to procreate? If allowed to continue, this is the beginning of the end of the freedoms our country was based on.

Tammy said...

I am a Catholic in the UK, but have no idea what is happening in the US. Please could you explain the HHS mandate. In the UK our Christian values & beliefs are also being eroded by an atheist state.

Katie Z. said...

Well said. The point that I continue to return to is: After they come for us, the Catholics, who will they come for next!

Sharripie said...

I followed your blog because of my interest in crafts, not for politics. You have every right to your opinion, as do I. Considered me unsubscribed.

Chip said...

Keep speaking about this issue. What people don't seem to get is that effects everyone, not "those" Catholics (which by the way I'm proud to say I'm one). If they can take away our religious rights, they can strip away many other rights as well.

gale said...

I already commented but I can't keep my mouth shut. I'm sad to see those who've decided they have to forgo your blog completely and miss out on your wonderful quilty posts because of a single political post. If I quit going to blogs in which I didn't like 100% of the content, I would have a lot more time on my hands to clean and sew. It's just as easy to click to the next entry or to click that x in the corner as to delete an unwanted email.

Dee said...

Not a Catholic issue's a Religious Freedom issue. Your post was spot on. Thank you for posting this!

TheCatholicScienceGeek said...

Thank you for posting this! Yeah, I've already started ruffling a few feathers regarding this issue and really appreciate your coming out and saying something about it. Keep standing strong and "be not afraid."

Kari V. said...

I absolutely, with every inch of my being, think you are completely wrong on this issue. One of the roles of government is to step in and protect us all. No one is forcing anyone to use prescription contraception.

Here's more food for thought: Despite the opposition of Catholic leaders, Catholics are actually more likely than non-Catholics to support including contraception in health plans, according to survey results by the Public Religion Research Institute. About 58% of American Catholics "believe that employers should be required to provide their employees with health care plans that cover contraception."

Alicia said...

Perhaps the catholics that don't want birth control, just shouldn't get it. Perhaps there are recipients of the health programs that do want it? Its not up to the Catholic church to decide make health decisions for their constituents. Its all well and good, but I have to pay for plenty of things that I don't want to support. For example I don't like the "fee" on my telephone bill that funds cell phones for the drug dealers. But i have no choice but to pay it. I don't believe in BC for other reasons, but if this is the health care system we live in now, there is no reason that the church should prevent its employees from the care that everyone else is receiving.

Laura said...

The Catholic Church employs many non-Catholic women as teachers. They get their health care from their employer but may not share the belief in not using contraception. Your belief is those women do not get to have contraception covered by their health plan?

Bessiemae said...

Late to this party. I'm Catholic too, though I suspect a fair bit more liberal one than you. ;-) I don't think church institutions should be required to provide insurance with birth control coverage *unless* they are accepting federal funds. Once you accept government money or use government property,etc., (whether you're the boy scouts, the Church, whoever), then I think you have to play by their rules.

Interestingly, I don't think I know a single person in my large Catholic community who would disagree with my position, but I suspect that has a fair amount to do with our differing geographical locations. Lefty Bay area here...

Regardless of my political or religious beliefs, however, I absolutely love your quilts. I read lots of blogs, from people of all different beliefs. I think it's silly to flounce off in a huff because you have different beliefs than what someone is expressing on their OWN blog. You were gracious enough not to say that, though. Good job turning that other cheek. :-)

Emily said...

OH Angela!!!! You had me at "Magesterium!!!" I can't begin to explain how happy this post makes me. It's hard to find a catholic (or anyone) around here who agrees with me / agrees with the Church! Let alone finding one who's educated enough to really back it up! I'm really outside of politics most of the time, and I have absolutely no idea how they might fix this, but the Church is certainly not going to budge, ever. :) Thanks for writing this up!

PS - I'm quite saddened by the couple commenters that feel you should be writing content specifically for them 100% of the time. This is your space, please keep using it freely!

TADVR said...

You go girl! It's your blog, and your fourm to share your work and thoughts. As a Catholic and having put 2 kids thru Catholic Schools preK-12 it's refreshing to hear others discussing the issues outside the political & religious blogs.

TADVR said...

You go girl! It's your blog, and your fourm to share your work and thoughts. As a Catholic and having put 2 kids thru Catholic Schools preK-12 it's refreshing to hear others discussing the issues outside the political & religious blogs.