1. No Catholics Need Adopt, A Massachusetts couple is denied a foster child because of religious views., By William McGurn, The Wall Street Journal, August 15, 2023, Pg. A13, OpinionOnce again, Samuel Alito saw it coming. Recent events in Massachusetts—where a Catholic couple was deemed unfit for a foster-care license because their beliefs are insufficiently progressive—have borne out his warnings.  The author of their license study took care to note that the Burkes are “lovely people.” But with regard to LGBT issues, she also said “their faith is not supportive and neither are they.” Ultimately the license review team concluded the Burkes “would not be affirming to a child who identified as LGBTQIA” and the Burkes were rejected.  How different the landscape today is from what Justice Kennedy so glibly promised in Obergefell. In what was almost an afterthought, he did allow that many who opposed same-sex marriage did so based on “decent and honorable” premises, and that their First Amendment rights still stand. “I assume that those who cling to old beliefs will be able to whisper their thoughts in the recesses of their homes,” Justice Alito answered, “but if they repeat those views in public, they will risk being labeled as bigots and treated as such by governments, employers, and schools.” When Obergefell was decided, skeptics were repeatedly asked: What could it possibly matter to you if the Supreme Court allows people of the same sex to get married? Ask Mike and Kitty Burke. https://www.wsj.com/articles/no-catholics-need-adopt-massachusetts-foster-care-family-children-marriage-obergefell-df672535__________________________________________________________ 2. Texas wants Planned Parenthood to repay millions of dollars, By Paul J. Weber, Associated Press, August 15, 2023, 7:43 AM Texas wants Planned Parenthood to give back millions of dollars in Medicaid reimbursements — and pay far more in fines on top of that — in a lawsuit that appears to be the first of its kind brought by a state against the largest abortion provider in the U.S. A hearing was set for Tuesday in front of U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, who earlier this year put access to the most common method of abortion in the U.S. in limbo with a ruling that invalidated approval of the abortion pill mifepristone. The case now before him in America’s biggest red state does not surround abortion, which has been banned in Texas since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last year. But Planned Parenthood argues the attempt to recoup at least $17 million in Medicaid payments for health services, including cancer screenings, is a new effort to weaken the organization after years of Republican-led laws that stripped funding and imposed restrictions on how its clinics operate.  https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2023/08/15/planned-parenthood-texas-medicaid/08df18c8-3b25-11ee-aefd-40c039a855ba_story.html__________________________________________________________ 3. Court backs the firing of unwed pregnant teacher, By Mark A. Kellner, The Washington Times, August 15, 2023, Pg. A6 A Catholic school was within its rights to deny an art teacher a contract renewal after the instructor became pregnant out-of-wedlock, the Supreme Court of New Jersey ruled Monday. Victoria Crisitello, who had once attended the school as a student, returned as a teacher in 2011 and signed a statement agreeing to the Archdiocese of Newark’s code of ethics for professional employees. Both the school’s attorney and a public interest law firm representing an Orthodox Jewish coalition hailed the ruling as protecting the rights of religious employers.  https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2023/aug/14/new-jersey-court-backs-catholic-school-firing-unma/__________________________________________________________ 4. We must save PEPFAR, Protecting the most vulnerable from AIDS, By Newt Gingrich, The Washington Times, August 15, 2023, Pg. B1, Opinion I recently signed a letter pledging my full support of Rep. Chris Smith’s efforts to ensure that U.S. global health policy genuinely cares for — and protects — the most vulnerable from AIDS. It is incredibly disappointing but not surprising that the Biden administration has hijacked one of President George W. Bush’s greatest accomplishments — the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, known as PEPFAR — to promote abortion on demand in the developing world. President Biden’s insincere and demonstrably false claim that PEPFAR isn’t pushing abortion on demand in Africa and elsewhere collapses under any serious scrutiny of its partners.  I applaud the work of Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, chairman of the House Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs, for leading the Appropriations Committee passage of his legislation to reauthorize PEPFAR for one year combined with Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance. In like manner, any multi-year reauthorization of PEPFAR must include that pro-life policy as well. I know pro-life members of Congress want to see PEPFAR succeed. I stand with them on that front. I also support this exceedingly important effort to protect unborn children and their mothers, increase transparency and accountability of our foreign aid dollars, and ensure that the U.S. provides true life-affirming assistance to those in need. Every American who cares about the unborn should tell their representatives and senators to support this important effort. https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2023/aug/14/we-must-save-pepfar-to-protect-most-vulnerable-fro/__________________________________________________________ 5. A throng of interfaith leaders to focus on combating authoritarianism at global gathering in Chicago, By David Crary, Associated Press, August 14, 2023, 8:19 AM More than 6,000 people representing scores of religions and belief systems are expected to convene in Chicago starting Monday for what organizers bill as the world’s largest gathering of interfaith leaders. For the Parliament of the World’s Religions, the week-long event marks a return to its roots – the organization was founded in Chicago in 1893. In the past 30 years, it has convened six times, most recently in Toronto in 2018. Past gatherings have drawn participants from more than 80 nations. This week’s speakers and presenters will represent Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, Baha’i, Hinduism, Jainism, Zoroastrianism, Sikhism, Indigenous religions, paganism and other beliefs. This year’s theme is “A Call to Conscience: Defending Freedom and Human Rights,” with a focus on combating authoritarianism around the world. Topics on the agenda include climate change, human rights, food insecurity, racism and women’s rights.  Illustrative of the parliament’s diversity, its program chair for this week’s event is Phyllis Curott, a Wiccan priestess who as an author and lawyer has advocated for the legal rights of witches.  Cardinal Blase Cupich, the Catholic archbishop of Chicago, is among the scheduled speakers this week. He has been urging Catholics in the archdiocese to engage in the event, saying it is in harmony with key priorities of Pope Francis. The gathering “is an opportunity to live out the Holy Father’s teaching that a core part of our identity as Catholics involves building friendship between members of different religious traditions,” Cupich said in a message to the archdiocese last month. “Through our sharing of spiritual and ethical values, we get to know one another.” https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/2023/08/14/parliament-world-religions-chicago-interfaith/db55fcd8-3a9c-11ee-aefd-40c039a855ba_story.html__________________________________________________________ 6. Ortega dictatorship in Nicaragua freezes bank accounts, assets of Jesuit university, By Diego Lopez Marina, Catholic News Agency, August 14, 2023, 8:53 AM The dictatorship of President Daniel Ortega and his wife, Vice President Rosario Murillo, in Nicaragua, froze the bank accounts and assets of the Central American University (UCA), run by the Society of Jesus, a move that has been condemned by a bishop and multiple organizations. “As a former student of the Central American University of Managua, I repudiate the aggression of the dictatorship against this center of studies,” the auxiliary bishop of Managua, Nicaragua, Silvio Báez, wrote Aug. 10 on his personal X (formerly Twitter) account. The prelate, living in exile in the United States since April 2019 due to persecution by the dictatorship, stated that “the freezing of accounts is an outrage against higher education, intellectual freedom, culture, and the whole of society.”  https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/255085/ortega-dictatorship-in-nicaragua-freezes-bank-accounts-assets-of-jesuit-university__________________________________________________________ 7. Cincinnati archbishop urges Catholics to reject state abortion amendment in November, By Daniel Payne, Catholic News Agency, August 14, 2023, 11:04 AM Cincinnati Archbishop Dennis Schnurr on Saturday urged Catholics in the state of Ohio to reject a November ballot measure that would enshrine abortion rights under the state’s constitution. The prelate said in a letter posted to the archdiocesan website that the proposed amendment, titled the “Right to Reproductive Freedom with Protections for Health and Safety,” would legalize the right to “take the lives of innocent children in the womb while harming women and families in the process.” The amendment, if passed, would dictate that Ohio “shall not, directly or indirectly, burden, penalize, prohibit, interfere with, or discriminate against” a woman’s attempt to get an abortion.  https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/255086/cincinnati-archbishop-urges-catholics-to-reject-state-abortion-amendment-in-november__________________________________________________________

TCA Media Monitoring provides a snapshot from national newspapers and major Catholic press outlets of coverage regarding significant Catholic Church news and current issues with which the Catholic Church is traditionally or prominently engaged. The opinions and views expressed in the articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Catholic Association.
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