1. Down syndrome abortion fight in Ohio takes legal twists.

By Julie Carr Smyth, Associated Press, March 11, 2020, 1:35 AM

A federal court in Cincinnati will hear complex legal arguments for and against Ohio’s Down syndrome abortion ban Wednesday, in a case viewed as pivotal in the national debate over the procedure.

Attorneys for the government contend in legal filings that the sidelined 2017 law does not infringe on a woman’s constitutional rights — because it “does not prohibit any abortions at all.”


2. Virus lockdown hits Vatican as pope livestreams audience.

By Nicole Winfield, Associated Press, March 11, 2020, 8:21 AM

Pope Francis held his weekly general audience in the privacy of his library Wednesday as the Vatican implemented Italy’s drastic virus lockdown measures.

Police barred the general public from St. Peter’s Square and the Vatican took measures to limit infections inside the city state and mitigate the economic fallout outside.


3. UN Secretary General Guterres to receive Path to Peace Award.

By Christopher White, Crux, March 11, 2020

United Nations Secretary General António Guterres will receive the annual top prize from the Path to Peace Foundation – the major charitable organization established to support the work of the Holy See Mission to the U.N.

Father Roger Landry, a priest who has been working at the Holy See Mission since 2015 and directs the Gala, praised Guterres for consistently making room in his schedule to receive different Vatican officials when they are in New York for related business.

“The synergistic relationship between Secretary-General Guterres and the Holy See was epitomized by the unprecedented joint video statement of Pope Francis and Guterres right before Christmas last year,” he told Crux.

“The joint statement itself, and the various issues raised in the statement, indicates not just a desire for cooperation but mutual commitment to working together to address many of the problems facing the world. There has been close cooperation, for example, on protecting our common home, care for refugees and migrants, fighting the scourge of human trafficking, and bringing peace to specific warn-torn areas,” Landry added.


4. Peruvian cardinal says Vatican pondering dissolution of scandal-ridden lay group.

By Elise Ann Allen, Crux, March 11, 2020

In a recent interview Peruvian Cardinal Pedro Barreto has said he believes the Soldalitium Christianae Vitae (SCV), a controversial lay group founded in Peru, ought to be dissolved, and he suggested the Vatican feels the same way.

One of the best-known and most controversial religious groups in Latin America, the SCV was established in Peru in the 1970s by Peruvian layman Luis Fernando Figari, who is accused of physical, psychological and sexual abuse and was prohibited by the Vatican in 2017 from having further contact with members of the group.


5. Mexican churches attacked during Women’s Day marches.

By Inés San Martín, Crux, March 11, 2020

Across Mexico, including in the capital Mexico City, protestors attacked Catholic cathedrals, mostly by throwing paint on the churches, but some attacks incendiary devices, including Molotov cocktails.

In Mexico City, the small group of policewomen was quickly overcome by a group of violent women, who attacked the walls of the church building. Also involved where a handful of faithful who were trying to protect the cathedral from vandalism, a common occurrence during feminist rallies in Latin America.

The demonstration came during a nationwide “women’s strike” held on March 9 to protest rising violence against women in Mexico. The strike happened the day after the United Nations International Women’s Day, held on March 8.


6. The Catholic case against single-payer.

By Grazie Pozo Christie, Angelus, March 10, 2020, Opinion

As we roll rapidly through the election year, the remaining two Democrats vying for the nomination have backed expensive and radical changes to health care policy.

Whether the frontrunners’ plans directly abolish private medicine (Sen. Bernie Sanders) or do so slowly but inexorably through a “public option” (Joe Biden), voters should consider that there is more at stake than losing the considerable advantage we Americans enjoy over our British cousins in cancer survival rates.

Also at stake is freedom.

Today in the U.S., private-sector medicine provides a varied landscape of health care styles and choices, in contrast to the sclerotic uniformity and government micromanagement of a socialist, single-payer system.

With private medicine, health care workers and hospitals can opt out of ethically problematic “treatments” like suicide, abortion, and amputations of healthy organs. And patients have the freedom to choose oases of sanity and Hippocratic medicine, like Catholic hospitals, where they will receive care in accordance with the highest concepts of human flourishing, and not just those that happen to be currently in vogue with social engineers.

If these fears seem the result of a fevered imagination, a close reading of former candidate Elizabeth Warren’s Medicare for All plan illustrates how one-size-fits-all-medicine can and will be harnessed to the cart of a radical social agenda.

From Warren’s bill: “Items and services to eligible persons shall be furnished by the provider without discrimination.” This is not an innocuous phrase meant to protect against age or race discrimination by providers and institutions. Formulations like this are currently being used to wield the accusation of “discrimination” as a cudgel enforcing progressive aims.

For an example, look no further than a lawsuit brought against a Catholic hospital network in California for refusing to perform a hysterectomy on a healthy woman who identifies as a man.

What will be lost in the calculation, and quite purposefully, are the rights of doctors, nurses, and others to step aside and let someone else do the job they can’t in good conscience bring themselves to do: because it ends a human life, or irreparably harms a young and healthy body.

This, of course, is the worst kind of discrimination, because it would prevent these good people from working for what would be the only medical employer in the country: the government.

Medicare for All comes with lots of promises that will turn out to be false: of cost containment, no tax hikes for the middle class, and the preservation of cancer cure rates that are the envy of the developed world. It also comes with assurances that promise to be true, like the fact that no one gets to keep their plan.

If that is not enough to scare voters away from presidential candidates who espouse single-payer medicine, the end of freedom of conscience in medicine should do the trick.


7. Women deacons possible after ‘Synodal Way,’ says German bishops’ chairman.

By Catholic News Agency, March 10, 2020, 9:00 AM

The new chairman of the German bishops’ conference has said that calling for the ordination of women could be a conclusion of the two-year “synodal way” being undertaken by the Church in Germany. Bishop Georg Bätzing of Limburg said in a radio interview Monday for International Women’s Day that such a conclusion would require Roman approval.


8. Human composting could become an option in California.

By Alejandra Molina, Associated Press, March 10, 2020, 3:57 PM

But first, at least in California, the human composting process has to become legal. The procedure is seen as a more sustainable alternative to cremation, which requires fossil fuels and releases carbon dioxide that pollutes and contributes to climate change. Proponents say families can use the soil to plant a tree or a garden to honor their loved ones.

The Catholic Church, however, has denounced it as an undignified way to treat the body.


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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