Ann Arbor, MI - In response to President Obama’s remarks regarding the final rule for individual and group health plans under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Mother Mary Assumpta Long, O.P., the Prioress General of the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist released the following statement:
“Regarding the so-called compromise by President Obama on the Department of Health and Human Services rule for “preventative” services that mandate coverage for abortion-inducing drugs, sterilization, and artificial contraception for their employees, the mandate still compromises religious, economic, and political liberty.
Despite the assurances by President Obama that separating the premiums paid by religious institutions to insurance companies somehow protects the religious liberty of Catholic and other religious institutions, the bottom line is these institutions will still have to pay the insurance company that is mandated to provide these services for free to any employee who wants these services. It is insulting for President Obama and his administration to suggest the so-called compromise “should be net cost neutral.” It is simply impossible to ensure that the insurance companies will not pass on those costs to the organizations and individuals who conscientiously object to their insurance policies covering abortion-inducing drugs, sterilization, and artificial contraception. In short, not only does the Administration not comprehend Catholic moral reasoning and the full-meaning of the principle of religious liberty, it does not even understand the basic economics of health-care insurance. The fact that Planned Parenthood has so quickly expressed satisfaction with these arrangements only confirms that nothing has changed in substance.
As the Second Vatican Council declared in paragraph four of its Declaration on Religious Liberty, Dignitatis Humanae:
“religious communities rightfully claim freedom in order that they may govern themselves according to their own norms, honor the Supreme Being in public worship, assist their members in the practice of the religious life, strengthen them by instruction, and promote institutions in which they may join together for the purpose of ordering their own lives in accordance with their religious principles.”
Moreover, as citizens of the United States we are guaranteed by the Constitution the right to fully and vibrantly live our Catholic faith according to the teachings of the Church. We as Catholics demand that our institutions not be required to formally or materially cooperate in acts that the Church has always taught to be intrinsically evil.
The Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist plead with God to protect the ability for all Americans to freely exercise their religious liberty. The Dominican Sisters of Mary will offer up daily prayers with the intention that this unjust mandate be overturned, and we will do so until it is overturned.”
The Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist is a Roman Catholic community of women religious based in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Our primary apostolate is the education and formation of young people. We remain open to engaging the modern culture with new forms of evangelization in order to preach the Gospel and teach the Truth. In 15 years, the Sisters have grown to over 100 in 14 years, the average age is 28 and the average age of the women who enter is 21. Sisters represent most of the States across the U.S., various Provinces in Canada, and countries in Europe and Asia.