Little Sisters’ Case "Not Nearly as Complicated as Government Would Like it to Be"

01/06/2016 Comments (7)

(Photo Credit: Farragutful, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

In 2014, Hobby Lobby won its legal challenge to the Health and Human Services' contraceptive mandate in a landmark decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Now, during this term, the Little Sisters of the Poor will get their day before the high court. The date for oral arguments has not been set, but the Little Sisters' chief advocate, former solicitor general Paul Clement, swept aside all the government's arguments in a blazing and brilliant brief filed this week that spells out the merits of the Little Sisters' case. 

Catholics who are rooting for the Little Sisters, but find it tough to sift through the legal arguments and terms, should take a few moments to read the summary posted below. ...READ MORE

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Downton Abbey's Carson and Mrs. Hughes Teach Us About Real Love

01/04/2016 Comments (10)

(Photo Credit: garybembridge, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons)


Fans of Downton Abbey rejoiced at the close of last year's Season 5, when Mrs. Hughes, the wise, middle-aged housekeeper and spiritual heart of the household, accepted a proposal of marriage from Carson, the aging law-and-order butler.

But in the first episode of Season 6,  which aired on PBS last night, the television audience held its breath as Mrs. Hughes appeared to backtrack on the marriage plans. 

The problem? 

“I’m not sure I can let him see me as I am now,” Mrs. Hughes  confides to Mrs. Patmore, the cook. 

Mrs. Patmore offers sensible advice: “Then keep the lights off.”

But Mrs. Hughes considers another solution: their marriage could be a close friendship...READ MORE

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Did Hillary Clinton Describe ISIS' Persecution of Christians as "Genocide"?

01/01/2016 Comments (18)

Pope Francis and Christian leaders in the Middle East and the U.S. have denounced the Islamic State's treatment of Christians  as "genocide." Yet in a Christmas Eve message that expressed his concern for Christians in the region, President Obama held back from defining ISIS' efforts to stamp out all vestiges of Christianity in territory under its control as "genocide."  

Now, the administration will face more pressure to change its stance, as Hillary Clinton signals her own position on a foreign policy issue that is steadily gaining traction.

During a Dec. 29 town hall meeting in Berlin, N.H., Clinton was asked to let voters know whether she would join Pope Francis and describe the...READ MORE

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No Room in $1.1 Trillion Spending Bill to Defend Conscience Rights

12/24/2015 Comments (7)

Just days before Christmas, Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, Ky., the president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, expressed alarm at Congress' failure to pass vital legislation to protect conscience rights for Catholic health providers.
“The bishops of the United States are gravely disappointed that the 2016 omnibus funding bill did not include the Abortion Non-Discrimination Act (ANDA)," read Archbishop Kurtz's Dec. 23 statement.  "While the omnibus bill certainly addresses other critical issues, the modest reform that ANDA represents—to make federal conscience laws on abortion workable and enforceable—was an urgent legislative priority in these final months of the year....READ MORE

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Robert George: “I Am the Most Richly Blessed Man in the World”

12/16/2015 Comments (4)

Princeton University's inimitable Professor Robert George was hospitalized on Dec. 6 for a serious illness. Following is a message he sent to supporters of his organization, the American Principles Project:

Beloved Friends,

Please accept these brief but heartfelt words of thanks from the most fortunate, most richly blessed man in the world. 

As you may have heard, I was hospitalized last week for a rare condition known as mesenteric arterial dissection. Throughout the ordeal that began last Sunday evening, my family and I have been buoyed by your kind and generous words, your steadfast moral support, and above all your fervent prayers. 

Even at the darkest moment, I took enormous...READ MORE

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NPR: 'Hot Rhetoric and the Planned Parenthood Shooting'

12/02/2015 Comments (2)

Just listened to NPR's On Point show, which offered a forum for debate on "Hot Rhetoric And The Planned Parenthood Shooting."

Grab a cup of coffee and take a few moments to listen to this, if only to hear Mona Charon effectively engage all the issues, as well as the charges that have been leveled at the pro-life movement since the recent shootings at the Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs.

A syndicated columnist and contributor to National Review, Mona Charon's presentation is smart, thorough, respectful, honest and courageous.

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Syrian Refugees: Should There Be a Religious Test?

11/20/2015 Comments (22)

In the wake of the terror attacks in Paris, Republican leaders have called for new measures to improve the vetting of refugees applying for asylum from Syria and Iraq, and some, like Jeb Bush, have noted that Christian applicants pose a lower security risk and thus raise fewer issues.

Earlier this week, Obama dismissed any attempt to introduce a "religious test" for refugee applicants as "shameful," sparking a fresh round of partisan attacks in the blogosphere against Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Tex., and Bush. 

In my view, what's truly shameful is that the U.S. has been so slow to accept any Syrian refugees --- a problem that partly reflects excessive bureaucratic delays as well as the White...READ MORE

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Teen Sexting: Pornification of America Turns High Schoolers Into Sex Offenders

11/12/2015 Comments (6)

(By Vox Efx, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

Last week, a sexting scandal that exploded at a Colorado high school brought to light the mixed messages kids receive in the pornified culture of 21st Century America.

“Consenting adults can do this to their hearts’ content,” said Thom LeDoux, the district attorney, but “if the subject is under the age of 18, that’s a problem.”

LeDoux said that "under state law it doesn’t matter whether a student took and shared explicit photos voluntarily—it is illegal,” reported The Wall Street Journal. “But he said he would use his discretion, looking at factors such as whether students were coerced.”

Most parents and educators don't want kids to be sent to jail or end up on sexual offender...READ MORE

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About Joan Desmond

Joan Desmond
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Joan Frawley Desmond, is the Register’s senior editor. She is an award-winning journalist widely published in Catholic, ecumenical and secular media. A graduate of the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies of Marriage and Family, she lives with her family in California..