1. Flood of bills on abortion presses court to weigh in, State legislation this year ‘unprecedented’, By Valerie Richardson, The Washington Times, May 4, 2021, Pg. A1
State legislatures across the country are on pace this year to approve an “unprecedented” number of bills placing limits on abortion, and that’s not spin from the pro-life movement.
The pro-choice Guttmacher Institute warned in a report that 61 bills restricting abortion access or services have passed in 13 states, putting the 2021 legislative session on track to surpass the record set in 2011. In many cases, the new measures are almost direct invitations to the Supreme Court to take up the constitutionality of the laws and reopen the debate on the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision.
“To put those figures in context, by this time in 2011 — the year previously regarded as the most hostile to abortion rights since Roe was decided — 42 restrictions had been enacted, including six bans,” said the institute, a research and policy organization that began as a Planned Parenthood affiliate.
2. Judge asked to toss South Carolina private school money ban, By Associated Press, May 4, 2021
Private schools and colleges asked a federal judge Monday to strike down the provision in South Carolina’s constitution that bars public money for private and religious schools, saying the 1895 measure is discriminatory.
The Catholic Diocese of Charleston and South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities filed the lawsuit last month. The state Supreme Court has blocked Gov. Henry McMaster’s efforts to share COVID-19 relief money with private schools or private school parents, citing the state constitution.
Daniel Suhr, an attorney for the plaintiffs with the Washington, D.C.-based Liberty Justice Center, told U.S. District Judge Bruce Hendricks on Monday in Charleston that the amendment is blocking historically Black colleges and universities and Catholic schools from receiving “fair, equitable access” to the money.

The provision is one of a number of “Blaine Amendments” imbedded in state constitutions, named after Maine Republican James Blaine, who advocated for them in the late 1800s as a way of blocking public money from going to Catholic schools. Federal courts have struck down some of the state measures in recent years.
3. Leading Catholics Offer Grim Assessment of Joe Biden’s First 100 Days, By Thomas D. Williams, Breitbart, May 3, 2021
Prominent Catholic thinkers have handed Joe Biden a failing report card following the president’s first hundred days in office.

For her part, Grazie Pozo Christie — a medical doctor and policy adviser for The Catholic Association — writes that President Biden eloquently proposed unity as the solution to America’s woes in his inaugural address but has failed miserably to make that a reality.
So many of the actions Biden has taken in his first 100 days “have not built bridges but deepened chasms, and this is especially true of those that defy the core ideals of our faith,” Christie writes in an April 30 essay for National Review.

Christie notes that one of Biden’s first actions as president was to rescind the Mexico City Policy, which “prohibits U.S. tax monies from being spent performing or promoting abortions in developing countries.”
“Encouraging poor women to abort their children instead of helping them meet their very real needs is the worst kind of false charity,” she adds. “That a Catholic president should restore funding for abortions overseas as one of his first acts is deeply troubling.”
Domestically, Biden has done much the same, Christie writes, proposing new rules that would send tens of millions in Title X Family Planning grants to abortion providers such as Planned Parenthood.

“It’s hard to see how sending millions of dollars to abortion businesses such as Planned Parenthood fosters the unity Biden touted, not to mention the fact that it contradicts our shared faith’s teaching on the sanctify of all life,” she contends.

As Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League, noted last Friday, there is nothing “right wing” about “addressing public figures who boast of their ‘devout Catholic’ status while constantly undermining what the Church teaches, especially on life and death issues.”
4. Nancy Pelosi’s Bishop: Pro-Abortion Politicians “Should Not Come Forward to Receive Holy Communion”, By Mary Margaret Olohan, LifeNews, May 3, 2021, 2:36 PM
San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone warned pro-abortion Catholic public figures not to receive communion at Mass if they find that they “are unwilling or unable to abandon” their “advocacy for abortion.”
In a lengthy document titled “Before I Formed You In The Womb, I Knew You,” the archbishop examined the implications of high profile Catholics who publicly support abortion.

“Archbishop Cordileone’s pastoral letter is a beautiful call for a deeper appreciation of the sacredness of both the Blessed Sacrament and of human life,” Maureen Ferguson, senior fellow with The Catholic Association, said in a statement following the archbishop’s warning. “It is a call for Catholics who are private citizens and those who bear the responsibility of public office, to deepen the reverence with which Holy Communion is received and reverence for the dignity of human life.”
5. Reckoning with history, Long Island diocese names 101 clergy accused of sex abuse, By Kevin J. Jones, Catholic News Agency, May 3, 2021, 11:00 AM
The Diocese of Rockvillle Centre has released a list of 101 diocesan clergy it believes to be credibly accused of sex abuse of minors. The list is not meant to be complete, and most allegations date back decades.
The list comes amid lawsuits from alleged clergy sex abuse victims and other compensation efforts in the New York diocese, which is one of the largest in the U.S.
“The list is not exhaustive,” said the introduction to the April 22 list. “The fact that this list may not include the name of the accused clergy who sexually abused you does not mean that you should not file a Sexual Abuse Proof of Claim Form.”

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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