1. Hey HBO, abortion isn’t a joke, Abortion is a serious and sorrowful thing, but the new film ‘Unpregnant’ tries to make it a laughing matter and normalize the loss of life and hope., By Father Dave Pivonka and Maureen (Malloy) Ferguson, USA Today, September 3, 2020, 3:15 AM, Opinion
HBO is airing a comedy about abortion. And we wish that was a joke.
In a recently released interview about the film, “Unpregnant” (possibly a shot at the pro-life film “Unplanned”?), one of the screenplay writers said she wanted to “write an abortion road trip story [to] bring some humor and make people more comfortable with the subject of abortion.”

As Christians, we can’t just take this in stride. Human life matters. Human dignity matters. And Hollywood trying to undermine the sanctity of life with cheap comedic tricks should turn our stomachs. None of us would tolerate a movie that used laughter to try to erase the horror of racism or anti-Semitism. And we can’t tolerate this movie either.
So, what do we do?
First, pray. Not just generically, but specifically — for the screenplay writers and producers behind “Unpregnant”; for the young women involved in the filming of the movie; for all the people who have backed it financially or are helping market the film. Pray for all of them. Ask Jesus to have mercy on them and change their hearts. Pray also for all who watch this movie. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to them just how horrible its goals are. Above all, pray for every teenage girl and every woman who feels she has no choice but an abortion. Pray that no woman has to find out the hard way that abortion is no laughing matter.
After you pray, act. Do something concrete to help your local crisis pregnancy center, maternity home or homeless shelter. Invite a single mom to dinner or offer to babysit her kids from time to time. Ask around and find out if there’s a woman in your parish or community who needs help navigating the difficulties of an unexpected pregnancy. In some way, big or small, be the friend a woman in crisis needs.
Lastly, if you have a subscription to HBO, cancel it. Then, email the CEO of HBO, Robert Greenblatt, and tell him why you are cancelling (Robert.Greenblatt@hbo.com).
Laughter is good. It can be food for the soul. Likewise, seeing the humor in a situation can keep us sane. But there is no humor to see in abortion, only sorrow. And to laugh in the face of such a loss — of life, of motherhood, of hope — isn’t keeping our sanity; it’s losing our humanity.
Father Dave Pivonka, TOR, is the president of Franciscan University of Steubenville. Maureen (Malloy) Ferguson, a 1992 alumna of Franciscan University, is a senior fellow of The Catholic Association and co-host of EWTN’s radio show and podcast “Conversations With Consequences.”
2. Binoche, other French environmentalists get pope’s backing, By Associated Press, September 3, 2020, 8:02 AM
Actress Juliette Binoche and fellow French environmentalists received encouragement from Pope Francis at a private Vatican meeting Thursday where he told them people shouldn’t lose hope even when the condition of the planet can appear “catastrophic.”

Binoche and the other activists work with the French Conference of Bishops on environmental themes, which were highlighted by Francis in a 2015 encyclical which exhorted all persons of good will to protect the Earth.
3. Profit over safety, especially in pandemic, ‘unjust,’ says Labor Day statement, By Mark Pattison, Catholic News Service, September 3, 2020
Given the “somber” realities imposed by the coronavirus pandemic, for companies to put profits over safety is “unjust,” said Archbishop Paul S. Coakley of Oklahoma City, chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, in the U.S. bishops’ annual Labor Day statement.
Even before the pandemic, “a significant number of Americans were trapped in low-wage jobs, with insecurity around food, housing and health care, and with little opportunity for savings or advancing in their career,” Coakley said in the statement, issued Sept. 2. “Those same workers have been hit particularly hard, and, it is devastating to say, many have paid with their life. As one New York subway worker put it: ‘We are not essential. We are sacrificial.’”
Coakley quoted Pope Francis in his exhortation,”Evangelii Gaudium,” saying: “Today we also have to say ‘thou shalt not’ to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills.”
4. German Catholic bishop criticizes ‘Synodal Way’ draft text on role of women, By Catholic News Agency, September 3, 2020, 5:00 AM
A Catholic bishop has sharply criticized a text produced by the German Church’s “Synodal Way” forum on the role of women.
In an open letter published Sept. 2, Bishop Rudolf Voderholzer said that a draft text prepared by the forum on “Women and Offices,” also known as Forum III, “lacks any theological level.”
The bishop of Regensburg was referring to a document produced by a working group on the “Participation of women in leadership under the current conditions of canon law.”
Voderholzer, a professor of dogmatics, expressed concern about the document’s presentation of the establishment of the sacraments, reported CNA Deutsch, CNA’s German-language news partner. 

The “Synodal Way” is a controversial process bringing together German lay people and bishops to discuss four major topics: the way power is exercised in the Church; sexual morality; the priesthood; and the role of women.
5. Four Ways the Obama-Biden-Harris Team Has Attacked Catholics, By Dr. Susan Berry, Breitbart, September 2, 2020
Despite having a self-professed Catholic as vice president, the Barack Obama-Joe Biden administration managed to openly attack Catholics in several ways by dismissing their beliefs as trivial and backward.
Now, with Biden as the Democrat 2020 nominee, and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) as his running mate, the anti-Catholic bias has not only continued, but intensified. From the assaults already waged against their faith, Catholics have a clear view of what they can expect from a Biden-Harris administration.

In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in July in Little Sisters of the Poor v. Pennsylvania, one that upheld a Trump administration rule exempting religious groups from Obamacare’s contraceptive mandate, self-professed Catholic Biden vowed to reverse protections for religious groups such as the Little Sisters.

“It’s alarming to Catholics to see Joe Biden tout his Catholic faith and then turn around and say he would immediately go after the Little Sisters of the Poor and reinstate the rules that would force them to either violate their faith or pay crippling fines,” Ashley McGuire, senior fellow with The Catholic Association, said in a statement to Breitbart News.
“Is there anything more contradictory than touting your faith while simultaneously threatening nuns who serve the elderly poor?” she asked.

In 2012, the Obama-Biden administration stood with teachers’ unions and against low-income parents choosing a private or religious school for their child’s education.

McGuire also told Breitbart News in August the Biden-Harris ticket, which has lurched further leftward, is especially dangerous for Catholics.
Harris, she said, “has come to be a ringleader of the anti-Catholic bullying that increasingly defines the Democrat party.”
She has “built a career out of opposing the work and values of Catholics, harshly prosecuting a whistleblower for exposing Planned Parenthood’s criminal sale of aborted baby body parts, and supporting efforts to force the Little Sisters of the Poor to violate their beliefs and provide employees with abortion pills,” McGuire asserted.
“One can only expect her to continue to do so in an elevated position of power,” she concluded. “It is equally disappointing to see Joe Biden tout his Catholic faith while picking as his running mate someone who has made her anti-Catholic bona fides clear.”
6. Susan Rice criticized over calling Pompeo’s ‘overtly religious’ beliefs ‘problematic’, By Michael Gryboski, The Christian Post, September 2, 2020
Former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice has garnered controversy over her criticizing Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for having “overtly religious” beliefs.

Ashley McGuire of The Catholic Association told the Washington Free Beacon that she believed Rice’s comment “perpetuates the Democratic Party’s pattern of anti-religious bigotry.”
“Democrats have made it clear that they think faith has no place out in the open in America,” said McGuire. “In fact it is America’s long-standing tradition of protecting the right of people of all faiths, including those who hold public office, to speak openly about their beliefs, that has made this a pluralistic country.”
7. Senators urge FDA to label abortion pill ‘imminent threat to public health’, By Catholic News Agency, September 2, 2020, 11:05 AM
Nearly two dozen senators are urging the Trump administration to remove the abortion pill from the market as advocates for the drug push for its wider availability.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) led a group of 20 Republican senators in signing a letter to the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, Stephen Hahn, on Tuesday, asking him to classify mifepristone as an “immanent hazard to the public health.” The classification would bar the pill from being sold in U.S. markets.
Citing “the devastating impact this drug has had on American women and children,” the letter noted that more than 3.7 million unborn children have been killed as a result of the abortion pill, along with 24 maternal deaths and 4,195 cases of “adverse maternal reactions.”

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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