Home | About Us | Subscriptions | Advertising | El Centinela
Catholic Sentinel | Portland, OR Tuesday, May 3, 2016
CYO Football 2015 2015 Priest Reassignments, Archdiocese of Portland Cardinal Francis George dies Mothering with faith Sisters of the Holy Names, 2015 Live Nativity at St. John the Baptist 2014 Fall CYO results Catholic Charities Donor Lunch 2014 Year of Consecrated Life opening Mass Holy Spirit Sisters Jubilee 2014 Seaside youth conference Mount Angel 125th Northwest Hub Furlow at papal Mass 2014 Rosary Bowl NW Brother André 2014 Fall 40 Days for Life 2014 Inauguration of Fr. Mark Poorman Coffee shop at abbey First day of school, 2014 Regis High School 50th anniversary 2014 Crooked Finger Pilgrimage Mass with migrant farm workers Maronite Ordination Consecration to "Immaculate Heart of Our Lady of Fatima" CYO track Southern Oregon Evangelization 2014 Priest Ordination Christ the King youth 2014 priest reassignments Our Lady of Lavang Confirmation, 2014 Memorial Day 2014 2014 Transitional deacon ordination Padre Foster Granados visits Albany Bishop Smith ordination Canonization of Pope John Paul II, Pope John XXIII Bishop Peter Smith 2014 Easter Vigil 2014 Walk of Cross 2014 Chrism Mass CYO basketball 2014 St. Patrick of the Forest 150th Catholic Charities Celebration of Hope, 2014 Boys2Men Archbishop visits Oregon State Penitentiary 40 Day Vigil for Life, 2014 Pope Francis creates new cardinals St. Henry shelter 2014 CYO swimming Funeral of Fr. George Wolf Travel on a budget Lunar New Year, 2014 Tech in Catholic schools 2014 Right to Life Rally Archbishop visits Santiam Prison First Mass in Oregon Milwaukie Posada St. Francis, Sherwood, Toy Drive Central Catholic football Typhoon Haiyan Deacon Ordination/ Kresbach, Schmitt A Catholic fisherman St. Cecilia Centennial Southern Oregon Welcome Mass Shepherd of the Valley, Central Point, dedication Grotto Anniversary 2013 Champions of Faith Dinner Gardenripe farms Coleman hop farm Corvallis Year of Faith Archbishop Howard at St. Rose Hitchhiking priests Franciscan Spiritual Center Sacred Heart, Medford Migrant Mass Tanzanians' jubilee World Youth Day 2013 2013 Blessing of the Animals 2013 Freedom Mass Albany school closure Fabric art Megan graduates from Catholic school St. Vincent de Paul Hillsboro 2013 Deacon ordination Sister Theresa Lamkin St. Helen Mission, Brownsville Marist Brainiacs St. Mary, Eugene St. Francis eighth graders Ascension confirmation 2013 Pastoral Ministry Conference St. Joseph Salem — Year of Faith Archbishop Sample's Installation Mass 2013 Archbishop Sample Chrism Mass 2013 2013 Young Catholics Pope Francis inauguration Celebration of Hope Vlazny Farewell Mass Archbishop Vlazny Farewell St. Paul Church in St. Paul Valley Catholic Green Building Rite of Election 2013 Water summit 2013 Lunar New Year Alveda King in Eugene New Monsignors, 2013 2013 Right to Life Rally MLK Mass, 2013 St. Henry, Gresham, Centennial Jesuit High drama School uniforms Friar in the mall Holy Trinity food ministry January Book Covers St. Andre Bessette food Year of Faith Mass Nestucca Sanctuary Hillsboro Choirs Father Betschart installation Salem Religious Freedom Rally Year of Faith Vespers, Awards Roy's Catholic School Adelante Mujeres 10th anniversary New Blanchet House Missionaries of Holy Spirit Priest, religious photos Providence Nursing Schools Pioneros Fortnight for Freedom Mark Bentz Deacon Ordination OLL School Walk Through Gaga over science St. Philip Neri Centennial Ordination of Bishop Cary SVDP, Grants Pass Holy Cross School centennial Confirmation - Mount Angel Holy Land Pilgrimage Blanchet Watershed Chrism Mass, 2012 Bishop-designate Cary Pope in Cuba, 2012 SSMO 125th Jubilee Mass Pope Benedict in Mexico 2012 Catholic Charities Celebration 2012 Madeleine Mardi Gras Centennial Rally for Life, 2012 Martin Luther King Jr. Mass 2012 Day Laborers-Guadalupe Guadalupe 2011 Christ the King, Milwaukie, 50th Sesame Doughnuts Central Catholic Volleyball St. Peter Centennial Deacon Ordination, October 2011 St. Agatha Centennial Rosary Bowl 2011 St. Wenceslaus, Scappoose, Centennial Filipino celebration Polish Festival 2011 Holy War Football 2011 World Youth Day 2011 Sun Gold Farm Our Lady of Victory's New Church Freedom Mass 2011 St. Mary Church Steeple Removal Priest reassignments, 2011 Old Catholic Buildings Paige Rice, St. Mary's runner Graduation 2011 Easter vigils 2011 Pastoral Ministry Conference Basketball Holy War 2011 Search for Peace 2011

Mt Angel Towers 8.13

Home : News : Nation and World
Santa Rosa Diocese rejects HHS mandate, bishop says
Bishop Robert Vasa
Bishop Robert Vasa
Catholic News Service

SAN FRANCISCO — If the Diocese of Santa Rosa, California, is required to cooperate with the Obama administration's mandate requiring most religious employers to provide no-cost contraceptive coverage, the diocese will refuse, says Bishop Robert Vasa.

"If they shut me down, they shut me down," the bishop said following a talk here on Catholic health care.

Bishop Vasa said he believes the church will prevail on the issue because religious liberty is "enshrined in our Constitution.

"Precisely because Jesus healed the sick, the church is involved in healing ministry," he said in his keynote address to the conference, stressing the Catholic Church's commitment to health care. 

"We are involved in this based on the conviction that each person has unique dignity."

In the Santa Rosa Diocese, Bishop Vasa said he has taken the first steps to changing its health insurance coverage — an action he has taken twice before in Lincoln, Neb., and Baker, Ore. Bishop Vasa was a priest of the Lincoln Diocese from 1976 to '99, when he was appointed bishop of Baker.

He requested that Anthem Blue Cross send him all 20,000 or more codes for procedures and payments so he can analyze exactly what is and is not covered. In the past, as an official of the Diocese of Lincoln and as bishop of Baker, Bishop Vasa said he changed health insurance to a self-insured plan that did not offer morally objectionable benefits to anyone.

In Baker and in Lincoln, Bishop Vasa broke from the established health insurance carrier to go with a self-insured plan that conformed completely to Catholic values, including opposition to contraceptives, sterilization and abortion. Most plans cover those procedures and drugs, even if they are not explicitly stated, Bishop Vasa said.

"I don't do business with people who don't think the way I do," Bishop Vasa said.

"Catholic health care is about more than excluding any particular procedure. It is about being knowledgeable about what is in your plan and making a conscious decision about what you want covered and what you do not want to have covered," he said.

He not only expects the plan to exclude abortion and contraceptives but it should also cover treatment after an attempted suicide, restoring fertility by reversing vasectomies and tubal ligations, and repairs after a botched abortion. 

"Good morals make good medicine," the bishop said.

A new federal proposal suggesting third-party administrators pay the costs of contraceptives for religious employers reinforced the mandated coverage for self-insured Catholic hospitals and social service agencies. The U.S. bishops said that even with the new proposal, the mandate "remains radically flawed."

Catholics must unite as they never have before if they hope to prevail against the federal contraceptive mandate, because the alternatives are bleak, according to speakers at the conference at St. Mary's Cathedral in San Francisco.

"We have to mobilize our church in a way we never have before," said William Cox, president and CEO of the Alliance of Catholic Health Care, an association of California Catholic hospitals.

"This is something we cannot fight unless we are united," said Richard Doerflinger, associate director of the U.S. bishops' Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities.

A remedy that the U.S. bishops are urging Catholics to support is the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act, said Doerflinger. Supporters may send their lawmakers a note in support of the legislation through a link at www.usccb.org/conscience.

The proposed measure will ensure that those who participate in the health care system "retain the right to provide, purchase, or enroll in health coverage that is consistent with their religious beliefs and moral convictions." It would amend only the new mandated benefits provisions in Title I of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to include the conscience protection that is already part of other federal health programs.

U.S. Rep. Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb., introduced the bill in the House, where it remains in committee; it now has more than 200 sponsors. In the Senate, the bill's chief sponsor Is Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., but senators voted a month ago to table it. Blunt has said, "This fight is not over."

The U.S. bishops as a group and individually have issued statements opposing the contraceptive mandate.

Advanced Search

Mary Jo Tully ~ The Path to Resurrection

News | Viewpoints | Faith & Spirituality | Parish and School Life | Entertainment | Obituaries | Find Churches and Schools | About Us | Subscriptions | Advertising
E-Newsletter | RSS Feeds

© 2016 Catholic Sentinel, a service of Oregon Catholic Press

Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved