To diocese: We can think for ourselves
As a Catholic, I have been bombarded with appeals from my bishop to "fight for my religious liberty" by asking the Obama administration to reverse its decision that requires all private health insurance plans to include coverage for birth control.
Bishop Ronald Gainer uses such alarmist terms as "severe assault on religious liberty" and "grave threats to the church's public moral witness."
As usual, the leaders of my church speak to the laity as naïve children who need a firm talking to and a hefty dose of fear to push us to agree with their conclusions.
If we disagree, we will be grouped with radical secularists. That we are thinking, praying, discerning adults who through the wisdom of the Holy Spirit have come to a different conclusion is an impossibility.
That there are millions of us Catholics who have discerned that contraception is the most loving way to honor our marriage, our family and the entire human community is not seen as a reflection of a greater wisdom that should give the bishops pause but a sinful influence by a culture of death.
If we dare to conclude that the compromise made by the Obama administration is an honorable one, we will be labeled "misinformed," "misled" and "patently deceived."
If you find there are few Catholics who speak out against the bishops' opinion know that there is a significant campaign within the diocese to ostracize those of us who hold a different opinion.
Joel Pett has lampooned the Catholic Church for the last time on my dollar. If this is the kind of reaction he and the paper enjoy on your reputation, I feel sorry for your future as a media provider.
While I was encouraged by the column by former contributing columnist Jenean McBrearty, " History shows Catholic Church would not swallow mandate," I was appalled by the cartoon by Joel Pett. It was extremely disrespectful and tacky.
Now, before I am written off as a religious or conservative nut case, I'd like to offer that while I did not agree, I respected the recent commentary by columnist Merlene Davis and editorial writer Jamie Lucke. Neither column was crass. I can't say that for Pett's cartoon.
Joel Pett's Feb. 15 editorial cartoon prompted me to write.
For years, the Catholic hierarchy maintained a culture of silence while its priests were abusing children.
This went on for decades. And now, this same church is taking a moral stand on birth control for women? What's wrong with this picture?
Thank you, Pett, for putting it in perspective for me.
Blanca Mikell Ward
Church's next step
Since the Catholic Church is claiming exceptions for its non-church businesses as a consequence of constitutional religious freedoms, are lay Catholic business owners afforded the same exceptions?
Will the Catholic Church deny the sacrament of communion to Catholic business owners who allow their health plans to provide birth control advice?