Report: 60% of teen pregnancies in New York end in abortion

Details:  New York has the highest teen abortion rate in the country, but per capita pregnancy and abortion rates among 15- to 19-year-olds have steadily declined over the last two decades, according to a report this week. Excluding miscarriages, nearly 60 percent of pregnancies among 15- to 19-year-olds in New York end in abortion, according [Read More…]

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FYI: Catholic teaching on the “morning-after” pill and rape

With the controversy swirling around the German bishops story yesterday, a deacon reader thought it would be helpful to lay out church teaching on this subject. Here, from the National Catholic Bioethics Center:  The “morning-after” pill, also known as “Plan B,” is often provided in hospital emergency rooms to women who have been sexually assaulted. [Read More…]

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German bishops allow “morning after” pill in cases of rape—UPDATED

Details from the AP:  Roman Catholic-run hospitals can prescribe limited emergency contraception to rape victims, German bishops said Thursday as they sought to contain fallout from an embarrassing recent case in which two hospitals refused to treat a woman. In a statement issued at the end of a regular meeting in the western city of [Read More…]

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Woman who helped develop NFP dies

Details, from CNS:  Dr. Evelyn Billings, who with her husband, John, pioneered research that led them to develop a form of natural family planning supported by the Catholic church, died Saturday after a short illness. She was 95. The Australian pediatrician joined her physician-husband’s team in 1965 as he was researching a more reliable method [Read More…]

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The executioner who became a death penalty opponent

This makes for a striking counterpoint to the recent essay by Fr. George Rutler, defending capital punishment. It comes from Sunday’s Washington Post, and tells how a man who spent decades personally administering the death penalty came to oppose it: Jerry Givens executed 62 people. His routine and conviction never wavered. He’d shave the person’s [Read More…]

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“The President has been a proponent of an expediency that is shameful and criminal in the eyes of God…”

My own bishop, Nicholas DiMarzio, took note of the anniversary of Roe v. Wade in a recent newspaper column, and he pulled no punches:  On Jan. 1, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This Executive Order freed the slaves in the 10 states that were in rebellion. It was not until 1865, with [Read More…]

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In favor of the death penalty: “Hanging concentrates the mind”

That, at least, is one of the sentiments expressed here by Fr. George Rutler in Crisis Magazine:  The grandson of St. Elizabeth Anne Seton,  Archbishop Robert Seton, long-lived but less loved, wrote that during the course of a holiday in France as a boy, the ceremonious spectacle of a man being beheaded inspired him greatly [Read More…]

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BREAKING: USCCB says revised HHS proposal “falls short”

The official statement, just released, along with Cardinal Dolan’s response: +++ The Feb. 1 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services related to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) shows some movement by the Administration but falls short of addressing U.S. bishops’ concerns. “Throughout the past year, [Read More…]

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Despite pleas from bishops, Jindal won’t halt planned Ash Wednesday execution

Details:  More attempts to stop the Feb. 13 execution of convicted child killer Christopher Sepulvado failed to make headway Tuesday. Gov. Bobby Jindal’s office said he has rejected a request from the Louisiana’s Catholic bishops to stop the lethal injection. And the Louisiana Board of Pardons has denied Sepulvado’s clemency petition without a hearing. Sepulvado, [Read More…]

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Catholic hospital: it is “morally wrong” to argue fetus is not a person

You may remember this story from last month.  Now, the hospital is changing its tune:  A Catholic hospital group said on Monday it was “morally wrong” to contradict its church’s teachings on the beginning of life when it argued fetuses are not people to defend itself against a wrongful death lawsuit in Colorado. Catholic Health Initiatives said it will instead [Read More…]

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