Cardinal O'Malley: Government Report Confirms Bishops’ Concern on Abortion Coverage: A new report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) “confirms the U.S. bishops’ longstanding concern about abortion coverage” in the Affordable Care Act (ACA), said Cardinal Seán O’Malley of Boston, chairman of the Committee on Pro-Life Activities of the U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. The report, “Health Insurance Exchanges: Coverage of Non-excepted Abortion Services by Qualified Health Plans,” was issued by the GAO, an independent reviewing agency of the U.S. government, on September 15. Despite repeated claims by President Obama and other supporters that the ACA would not promote abortion, the report identified over a thousand health plans eligible for federal premium subsidies that cover elective abortions. On five state exchanges, every plan covers such abortions in 2014; in another three large states, 95 to 98 percent of the plans do so. The Act’s alleged requirements regulating abortion coverage do not exist or are widely ignored. Many health plans do not inform enrollees about their inclusion of abortion coverage; they do not tell them how much they are being charged for such coverage; and they do not charge a “separate payment” for abortions that is distinct from the premium payment eligible for federal tax subsidies. While state insurance departments are supposedly tasked by the federal government with ensuring that these health plans maintain segregated accounts for abortion funds to keep them separate from federal funds, the report indicates that this is not taking place. (More on the Church's teaching on abortion) (Read the GAO report)
Sister Miriam Teresa Demjanovich: MIracle in New Jersey
A little known Rutherian Greek Catholic nun is to be beatified in Newark on Oct. 4. The native of New Jersey published her writings on prayer - writings that became "something of a Catholic best seller in the 1930's," according to the bishop of the Byzantine Catholic Eparchy of Passaic, Most Rev. Kurt Burnette. Sister Miriam Teresa entered the Sisters of Charity in Convent Station in 1925, and died just two years later at the age of 26. A cure of blindness in a young boy in the 1960's is attributed to her intercession. To learn more about Sister Miriam Teresa, log onto: http://www.scnj.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=category.display&category_id=15 (Note: This is the same congregation of Sisters to which our own Sister Maureen Kirwan belongs.)
Register now for the 3rd Annual Bishop John Ricard Conference - October 4, 2014 at St. Sylvester Parish in Gulf Breeze - for all in parish ministry! (Full brochure English Spanish) (Flyer English Spanish) (Online Registration).
The Instrumentum Laboris, the agenda of the October 2014 Extraordinary Synod on the Family, is now posted on the Vatican's website. Entitled, The Pastoral Challenges of the Family in the Context of Evangelization. This document provides a substantive reflection on the major challenges facing the family in the early twenty-first century as well as articulates certain pastoral challenges. Please pray for our bishops as they look forward to the Extraordinary Synod!