1. Of a Mississippi abortion law took on greater significance after the Supreme Court allowed a more restrictive Texas law, Case takes on greater significance after justices let Tex. law go into effect, By Robert Barnes, The Washington Post, September 14, 2021, Pg. A1

Abortion providers told the Supreme Court on Monday that approving a Mississippi law that bans most abortions after 15 weeks would “scuttle a half-­century of precedent and invite states to ban abortion entirely.”

In a statement Monday, Fitch said the clinic’s lawyers did not try to defend the original Roe decision.

“Nothing in constitutional text, structure, history, or tradition supports a constitutional right to abortion, nor is there a sound basis for the current viability guidepost that determines when states can enact limitations on abortion,” she said. “It is time to return policymaking to the people where they can address abortion policy in a way that empowers women and promotes life.”

The state’s brief said the court’s abortion jurisprudence puts it “at the center of a controversy that it can never resolve,” and that changes in society and science have undermined Roe.

“Today, adoption is accessible and on a wide scale women attain both professional success and a rich family life, contraceptives are more available and effective, and scientific advances show that an unborn child has taken on the human form and features months before viability,” the brief states.

It dismisses the argument that reproductive control is essential to what Ginsburg once called “a woman’s autonomy to determine her life’s course, and thus to enjoy equal citizenship stature.”


2. Pope visit a sign of inclusion for Slovakia’s excluded Roma, By Nicole Winfield and Karel Janicek, Associated Press, September 14, 2021, 8:02 AM

Pope Francis traveled to the far east of Slovakia on Tuesday to meet with the country’s Roma in a gesture of inclusion for the most socially excluded minority group in Slovakia, who have long suffered discrimination, marginalization and poverty.

Francis’ visit to the Lunik IX settlement in Kosice was one of the highlights of his four-day pilgrimage to Hungary and Slovakia. It’s his first trip since undergoing intestinal surgery in July and marks the restart of his globetrotting papacy after a nearly two-year coronavirus hiatus.


3. Companies grapple with religious exemptions to vaccination rules, By Tom Howell Jr., The Washington Times, September 14, 2021, Pg. A3

Faith-based exemptions are gaining a big role in the debate over employer vaccine mandates, forcing companies to vet what is a “sincerely held” belief or whether workers are using religion as an end-run around tough rules imposed by corporations and cheered by President Biden.

Workers across multiple faiths say scripture informs them that their body is a temple that shouldn’t be polluted by certain drugs. Some Catholics are pointing to a historical connection between fetal cell lines used in vaccine production and abortions from decades ago.

Vaccine requirements have historically included carve-outs for religious or medical reasons, though the deadly and all-encompassing nature of the COVID-19 crisis is prompting some companies to take a hard line.


4. Pope gets lucky as trip offers unplanned chance to reassure Jews, By John L. Allen Jr., Crux, September 14, 2021, Opinion

[T]here’s no question Pope Francis got a bit lucky over the past couple of days with regard to the church’s relationship with Jews.

In late July, when the schedule for the pope’s Sept. 12-15 trip to Hungary and Slovakia was announced, there was no way to know it would come on the heels of a rift with Jews caused by comments on the Torah Pope Francis made on August 11, or that he would arrive in Hungary just 48 after his top aide for relations with Jews was compelled to release a couple of letters to rabbis attempting to put out the flames.

Nevertheless, the timing has proven enormously beneficial for Francis. Twice in the last few days he’s taken part in previously scheduled sessions with Jewish leaders, once in Hungary on Sunday and again today in Slovakia, and while he didn’t directly address the controversy over his rhetoric from August, he was able to use both sessions to remind Jews of his strong desire for friendship and his fierce opposition to contemporary anti-Semitism.

For anyone watching this trip unfold through the lens of the recent controversy, I suspect the take-away would be that while Pope Francis may not always express himself with the theological precision some might like, the idea that he’s insensitive to Jews or unconcerned about their fate just doesn’t hold water.


5. Bishops report 95 attacks on Catholic churches in US since May 2020, By Kate Olivera, Catholic News Agency, September 13, 2021, 4:01 PM

There have been at least 95 reported incidents of vandalism of Catholic churches across the United States since May 2020, according to a report by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee for Religious Liberty.

Incidents include arson, the destruction of statues, and the defacement of church buildings and gravestones with swastikas and anti-Catholic language.

“Whether those who committed these acts were troubled individuals crying out for help or agents of hate seeking to intimidate, the attacks are signs of a society in need of healing,” Archbishop Thomas Wenski of Maimi, chairman of the USCCB Committee on Religious Liberty, and Archbishop Paul Coakley of Oklahoma City, chairman of the USCCB Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, wrote in a July 2020 statement.


6. Pope Francis seeks to set misunderstanding with Jews aside during papal trip, By Claire Giangravé, Religion News Service, September 13, 2021, 9:31 PM

In his four-day apostolic visit to Hungary and Slovakia Sept. 12-15, Pope Francis stressed the importance of Catholic-Jewish relations, which were recently called into question after the pope suggested Jewish law was obsolete.

Francis implored faithful of all religions to “leave behind our past misunderstandings” in order to promote fraternity and peace. He also urged Jewish and Christian faith leaders to come together to combat antisemitism, “a fuse that must not be allowed to burn.”


7. Providers urge Supreme Court to reject 15-week abortion ban, By Mark Sherman, Associated Press, September 13, 2021, 8:51 PM

Abortion providers urged the Supreme Court Monday to reject Mississippi’s 15-week prohibition on most abortions, saying a decision to uphold it would “invite states to ban abortion entirely.”


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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