TCA Podcast, – “Conversations with Consequences,” Episode 227 – John Bursch On Loving God’s Children & Route 60: The Biblical Highway! John Bursch of Alliance Defending Freedom joins to discuss his new book, Loving God’s Children: The Church and Gender Ideology, offering a chronology into the current LGBT agenda that was really bolstered by Obergefell v. Hodges, and how we as Catholics can help those suffering with gender dysphoria. We also learn all about a new movie coming to theaters next month, offering a virtual pilgrimage to Israel on a highway of deep historical significance. Travel the path that once felt the footsteps of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, King David–and Jesus in Route 60: The Biblical HighwayFather Roger Landry also offers an inspiring homily for this Sunday’s Gospel. Catch the show every Saturday 7amET/5pmET on EWTN radio! 1. Federal judge: West Virginia can restrict abortion pill sales, By Leah Willingham, Associated Press, August 25, 2023, 8:30 AM West Virginia can restrict the sale of the abortion pill, despite federal regulators’ approval of it as a safe and effective medication, a federal judge has ruled. U.S. District Court Judge Robert C. Chambers determined Thursday that the near-total abortion ban signed by Republican Gov. Jim Justice in September 2022 takes precedence over approvals from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. “The Supreme Court has made it clear that regulating abortion is a matter of health and safety upon which States may appropriately exercise their police power,” Chambers wrote in a decision dismissing most challenges brought against the state by abortion pill manufacturer GenBioPro, Inc. in a January lawsuit filed in the state southern district’s Huntington division. 2. Montgomery students can’t opt out of LGBTQ storybooks, judge says, In denying a temporary injunction, a federal judge was not persuaded that certain readings infringe on the First Amendment rights of religious parents, By Nicole Asbury, The Washington Post, August 24, 2023, 6:48 PM A federal judge Thursday denied a request to let Montgomery County parents pull their children out of the classroom when books with LGBTQ characters are read aloud. Several Muslim and Christian families sued Montgomery County Public Schools in May, saying the use of LGBTQ storybooks forces religious parents to either forgo their beliefs or depart the public school system. They asked to allow their children to opt out of such readings before the school year begins Aug. 28, at least on a temporary basis while litigation over a permanent exemption proceeds. 3. If they want to win, Republicans need to go on offense on abortion, By Kellyanne Conway and Marjorie Dannenfelser, The Washington Post, August 24, 2023, 4:17 PM, Opinion The issue of abortion was an inflection point Wednesday during the first debate of the campaign for the Republican Party’s 2024 presidential nomination. Some candidates were boldly pro-life. Some were not.  To win hearts, minds and votes, Republican candidates must do four crucial things: First, define your pro-life position. Recent polls show that 56 percent of voters support a national abortion limit of 15 weeks, with exceptions for rape, incest and the life of the mother. That is why a 15-week minimum standard to protect babies in the womb, at least by when they might be able to feel pain, is a popular and humane policy that Republicans must proudly adopt and articulate. Second, pro-life advocates must serve moms and save children. Highlight the important work of pregnancy resource centers, which 91 percent of Americans support. Speak with love, not judgment, and affirm our readiness to protect both mother and child. Champion legislation such as the Providing for Life Act, which calls for child support starting at pregnancy, expanding the child tax credit, parental leave support, resources for pregnant and parenting students, and much more. Third, be a peacock and not an ostrich about the recent gains for life. A year after the Dobbs decision, half the country — 25 states — voted to protect babies in the womb. Pro-life lawmakers are taking ambitious steps to increase support for moms and families, with state laws providing millions of dollars in funding to help them access resources. It’s time for Republicans everywhere to talk about it. Finally, go on offense. Democrats plan to put abortion on the ballot across the country, and candidates everywhere will make this their central issue for the 2024 election. Smoke out the Democrats’ out-of-touch positions. Challenge them to reveal where they stand. Is there any abortion they find objectionable? Voters deserve to hear exactly where each Democrat stands on protecting life. America needs a national defender of life who will boldly advance this crucial human rights cause. With millions of lives at stake and millions of mothers in need, Republicans, will you boldly stand for life? We’re watching closely — and so are voters all across this country. Kellyanne Conway is a longtime pollster who served as counselor to President Donald Trump and manager for the 2016 Trump-Pence campaign. Marjorie Dannenfelser is president of Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America. 4. Virginia school boards must adhere to Gov. Youngkin’s new policies on transgender students, AG says, By Sarah Rankin, Associated Press, August 24, 2023, 4:42 PM Republican Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s new model policies for the treatment of transgender students are in line with federal and state nondiscrimination laws and school boards must follow their guidance, the state’s attorney general said in a nonbinding legal analysis released Thursday. “The Model Policies ensure that all students are treated with dignity and that parental involvement remains at the center. These policies are fully compliant with the law, and school boards across the Commonwealth should support and implement them,” Attorney General Jason Miyares, also a Republican, said in a statement. The advisory opinion from Miyares comes as a growing number of school boards across the state are responding to the administration’s guidelines, which were finalized last month after a lengthy review and address issues ranging from athletics to pronoun use in the classroom. The guidelines, which under state law are supposed to offer something of a road map for local school districts fashioning their own policies, roll back many accommodations for transgender students urged by the previous Democratic administration. They have won praise from conservative and religious groups and sparked criticism from Democrats and LGBTQ advocates. 5. Catholic parish challenges Michigan law that would control who it hires, By Tyler Arnold, Catholic News Agency, August 24, 2023, 4:00 PM A Catholic parish in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is taking a legal battle to an appellate court amid fears that a state civil rights law could be used to restrict its religious liberty in matters related to gender identity and sexuality. Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish is asking the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit to block the state attorney general’s office from using the Elliott Larsen Civil Rights Act to force the parish to hire employees who reject Catholic teachings on sexuality and gender identity or change its policies toward students in its parish school who have same-sex attraction or identify as transgender. The parish is asking that the appellate court overturn a lower court’s decision to throw out its lawsuit. Although the attorney’s general office has not issued any legal warnings or brought any complaints to the parish, the lawsuit argues that it could be targeted based on the Michigan Supreme Court’s recent reinterpretation of the law. The act has existed since 1977, but in July 2022, the court upheld a Michigan Civil Rights Commission interpretation of the law, which stated that the prohibition of discrimination based on a person’s sex also included discrimination based on a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity. Another institution that is suing the state over the same law, Christian Healthcare Centers, also filed an appeal with the same appellate court after its lawsuit was thrown out. Both organizations are being represented by Alliance Defending Freedom.

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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