TCA Podcast, – “Conversations with Consequences,” Episode 67- Pro-Life Democrat Katrina Jackson On Margaret Sanger & Edward Pentin Explores The Next Pope!

On a special edition of Conversations with Consequences, Dr. Grazie Christie and Maureen Ferguson talk with pro-life democratic state senator Katrina Jackson of Louisiana about Planned Parenthood’s racist origins plus a recent SCOTUS ruling on legislation authored by Jackson herself. We also go across the pond to Rome to visit Edward Pentin about his new book, The Next Pope: The Leading Cardinal Candidates. Make sure to tune in every Saturday at 5pm ET on EWTN radio!

1. Freedom Beats Aid for Religious Schools, By Avi Schick, The Wall Street Journal, July 31, 2020, Pg. A13, Opinion

The last week of the recent Supreme Court term brought two important decisions for supporters of religious liberty in education. As is often the case in school, the more popular one isn’t necessarily the most likely to succeed.

Espinoza v. Montana was the long-awaited Blaine Amendment case. It held that a state constitutional provision excluding religious schools from programs that fund private schools runs afoul of the First Amendment’s Free Exercise Clause.

Our Lady of Guadalupe School v. Morrissey-Berru involved the “ministerial exception” to employment laws, which insulates religious institutions from some labor lawsuits.

Although Our Lady of Guadalupe generated less passion, it is likely to prove much more meaningful to religious schools.

Espinoza is doctrinally important, and it rightly permits states to support religious schools alongside other private schools. But there is no reason to think that states will now step up spending.

Our Lady of Guadalupe, on the other hand, provides religious schools with something vital. In an era when the gulf between society’s values and those promoted by religious schools is getting wider while tolerance for differences is getting narrower, the ruling ensures that religious schools can pursue their mission free from government interference.

Mr. Schick is a partner at Troutman Pepper and president of the Rabbi Jacob Joseph School.

2. Exposing the Racist Crusade of Margaret Sanger and Planned Parenthood, By Grazie Pozo Christie and Maureen Ferguson, National Catholic Register, July 30, 2020, Opinion

The Greater New York chapter of Planned Parenthood is removing the name of its founder, Margaret Sanger, unapologetic eugenicist and (up-to-now) liberal heroine, from its flagship building.

A history and a present steeped in white supremacy — such moral clarity is refreshing, but will it change Planned Parenthood’s operations on the ground? Probably not, because what we are seeing here is a name change, not a policy change.

The new focus on Sanger’s racism is already creating whiplash in political circles and should cause more in days to come. Planned Parenthood of Greater New York has also asked for the removal of their founder’s name from the street that they themselves lobbied to be designated Margaret Sanger Square. And what of the once-proud past winners of Planned Parenthood’s Margaret Sanger Award? They include Hillary Clinton (“I admire Margaret Sanger enormously”) and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Will they be asked to renounce their Margaret Sanger Awards?

It’s high time they did. And not just because decades ago Sanger founded Planned Parenthood to carry out a racist mission, but because today it still does.

Grazie Pozo Christie, M.D., is a policy adviser for The Catholic Association, and Maureen Ferguson is a senior fellow for The Catholic Association.

3. Congressional hearing highlights case of missing Chinese Catholic bishop, By Matt Hadro, Catholic News Agency, July 30, 2020, 1:30 PM

The fate of a long-imprisoned Catholic bishop in China was the focus of a congressional hearing on Thursday, amid growing concern he may have died in the custody of the Communist government.

“President Xi Jinping: Where is Bishop Su, and what have you done to him?” Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.), co-chair of the commission, asked in his opening remarks of a July 30 hearing of the bipartisan Congressional Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission.

“What have you done in secret to this extraordinary man of God? And why does a powerful dictatorship fear peaceful men and women of faith and virtue?”

Bishop James Su Zhimin of the Diocese of Baoding, in China’s Hebei province, was arrested by Chinese authorities in 1997. He was last seen by family at a hospital in 2003 while he was in government custody.

According to Bishop Su’s nephew, Chinese officials have reportedly asked the Vatican to appoint a new bishop of Baoding, UCA News reported on July 22. Their preferred candidate is Coadjutor Bishop Francis An Shuxi, a member of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association, the state-sanctioned church.

4. Federal agencies appeal suspension of abortion pill rule, By Michael Kunzelman, Associated Press, July 30, 2020, 1:13 PM

The Trump administration has asked a federal appeals court to reinstate a rule that has required women to visit a hospital, clinic or medical office to obtain an abortion pill during the COVID-19 pandemic.

A federal judge in Maryland agreed earlier this month to temporarily block enforcement of the rule. Justice Department attorneys asked U.S. District Judge Theodore Chuang to suspend his July 13 order while they appeal, but the judge refused on Thursday.

The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday docketed the government’s appeal of Chuang’s decision.

5. Biden campaign launches coalition to capture religious votes, By Nicholas Rowan, The Washington Examiner, July 30, 2020, 9:22 PM

The Biden campaign on Thursday launched Believers for Biden, a campaign coalition targeting religious voters, in an event headlined by Delaware Sen. Chris Coons.

Biden, who is a vocal Catholic, has often faced criticism from religious voters for taking political positions that do not align with his church’s teaching. The most prominent of these are his opinions on abortion and gay marriage, which led to him being denied communion last year at a South Carolina church.

Biden also stirred discontent in July when he spoke out against the Little Sisters of the Poor, a Catholic order of nuns that the Supreme Court this year relieved of a long-running dispute over an Obama-era contraception mandate.

6. Supreme Court Session in Review: A Wake-Up Call for Catholics, By Andrea Picciotti-Bayer, National Catholic Register, July 30, 2020

The U.S. Supreme Court ended its 2019-2020 term earlier this month with a flurry of decisions. I hope that this quick overview of some of the court’s most consequential decisions inspires Catholics to be steadfast in prayer for the high court to defend what is good, true and beautiful, even when it miserably failed to do so on too many occasions.

The Supreme Court in Bostock and June Medical dealt grave blows to the rule of law and the inherent dignity of the human person. Almost in the same breath, however, the high court safeguarded religious belief from interference by the government in Espinoza, Little Sisters of the Poor and Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Such unpredictability might tempt some Catholics to fall into despair, or to demand that judges use radical-but-ill-defined philosophies dreamt up by utopian “conservatives.” Both temptations should be resisted. Instead, we should pray that in the coming term the men and women on the high court defend the divinely revealed truth about the human person and the sanctity of life; and, just as important, that they faithfully use conservative legal principles to ensure that these truths are once again held to be self-evident.

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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