TCA Podcast, – “Conversations with Consequences,” Episode 135 – Carter Snead on Human Dignity & Dobbs + Kelsey Wicks on Pro-Life Confraternity As the Supreme Court takes up a critical abortion case this December, legal scholar Carter Snead of the University of Notre Dame joins Dr. Grazie Christie and Leigh Snead to discuss this important case and why abortion is “completely untethered from the Constitution’s text, history, and tradition.” As Catholics are called to pray for Dobbs ahead of oral arguments, we also talk with Kelsey Wicks, operations manager of Catholic News Agency about a pro-life confraternity she is starting. Father Roger Landry also offers an inspiring homily to mark Christ the King this weekend. Catch the show every Saturday at 7amET/5pm ET on EWTN radio! 1. Church vandalism is soaring. Here’s why everyone should care., By Samuel J. Aquila and Tim Busch, The Washington Post, November 19, 2021, Pg. A19, Opinion Archdiocese records show that at least 25 other Catholic parishes and ministry centers in and around Denver have been vandalized, looted, targeted by arson or desecrated in the past 21 months alone. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops declared the graffiti at the cathedral to be the 100th incidence of vandalism, arson and destruction of Catholic property nationwide since May of 2020. Yet that number doesn’t include many of the attacks that have been identified in Denver, along with countless similar incidents in other cities and states not reported in the media.  As Catholics, we recognize that this is a spiritual crisis. We pray for the end to such horrifying attacks and for God’s love to drive out the hate in the perpetrators, regardless of who they have targeted. Yet as Americans, we also clearly see a cultural crisis. People of goodwill, whether religious or not, must condemn and confront the societal trends that encourage attacks on houses of worship — trends that extend far beyond religion. America has long been a place where different people with different views could coexist in peaceful communities. Those differences were often significant, but the ability to hold them without fear of punishment was a wonderful source of national unity. Now, however, those differences are increasingly seen as something to be reined in or driven out, contributing to a mounting state of national division.  Everyone has a role in lifting America out of this crisis. Regardless of our individual beliefs, we must regain respect for the dignity of the human person. As Thanksgiving and the holiday season approach, let’s remember that all of us have a right to our own beliefs and a duty to accept that others have the same right. If we renew that understanding, our society will emerge from this age of division. If we do not, things will get far worse than seeing “Satan lives here” spray-painted on a cathedral door. Samuel J. Aquila is the Catholic archbishop of Denver and an advisory board member of the Napa Institute, where Tim Busch is chairman and co-founder. 2. HHS repeals exemptions for child welfare agencies, By Mark A. Kellner, The Washington Times, November 19, 2021, Pg. A2 The Biden administration Thursday said it would rescind religious freedom protections granted to child welfare agencies and require them to place children with LGBTQ families and to people of other faiths. The move will “further civil rights and equal opportunity for all people, irrespective of their sexual orientation, gender identity, and religion,” according to a press statement from the Department of Health and Human Services. 3. Florist at center of wedding-service battles agrees to retire, By Stephen Dinan, The Washington Times, November 19, 2021, Pg. A1 A Washington state florist has agreed to retire from her business and pay a $5,000 settlement to close out a case accusing her of illegal discrimination against a same-sex couple that had wanted her to provide custom floral arrangements for their wedding ceremony. Barronelle Stutzman also agreed to cancel her request that the U.S. Supreme Court rehear her case. She said the $5,000 payment to the two men was a way to exit without having to compromise on her religious beliefs and not have to pay large fees to lawyers for the couple. “I am willing to turn the legal struggle for freedom over to others. At age 77, it’s time to retire,” she wrote in a letter announcing her decision to settle. Her case had become one of the most-watched tests of same-sex couples versus religiously-devout businesspeople who have refused to service same-sex ceremonies. 4. The Senate needs to confirm Biden’s new international religious freedom ambassador now, By Knox Thames, Religion News Service, November 18, 2021, 2:33 PM, Opinion The State Department report is only one part of how the United States advocates for international religious freedom. Since 1998, when Congress passed the bipartisan International Religious Freedom Act, a special ambassador has led U.S. diplomatic efforts in promoting and protecting religious freedom abroad. Since the end of the Trump administration, this post has been empty. To ensure American values and interests remain at the forefront of the religious freedom fight, the Senate should confirm Rashad Hussain, President Joe Biden’s nominee for ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, before Christmas.  Don’t take my word alone: Former President Donald Trump’s ambassador, Sam Brownback,  tweeted out a call for quick Senate action earlier this month, while David Saperstein, who held the post under former President Barack Obama, backed Hussain’s nomination in a joint op-ed with conservative Robert P. George, a past chair of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom. Former USCIRF Chair Katrina Lantos-Swett expressed support  for Hussain, and USCIRF’s current leadership  endorsed him for the job. He’s gotten support from a diverse array of groups, including the Religious Freedom Institute,  Open Doors, the  American Jewish Committee,  Christian Solidarity Worldwide, the  Anti-Defamation League,  International Christian Concern  and  other  religious freedom advocates. Knox Thames last served as the special adviser for religious minorities in the Obama and Trump administrations. He is writing a book about global persecution. 5. Leading pro-life bishops: Catholic Church must be prepared if Roe overturned, By Katie Yoder, Catholic News Agency, November 18, 2021, 6:15 PM The Catholic Church must be prepared to act if Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court case that legalized abortion nationwide, is overturned, says the incoming chair of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’  Committee on Pro-Life Activities. “If Roe is overturned, the issue, as I understand it, goes back to the states and the response will be uneven,” Baltimore Archbishop William E. Lori said Nov. 17, speaking on the issue of abortion. “Regardless, the Church has to be there and it has to continue teaching serenely, firmly, consistently, and lovingly.”  “Is there a pro-life pregnancy center? Can you donate?” he asked. “Can you volunteer? Can you serve on your parish pro-life committee? Can you think about going either to the March for Life in Washington or a local march for life in your own locale?” He added that even something as small as giving a phone call to someone confined at home because of illness or age helps foster a culture of life.

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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