Our Calendar
February 2014

Archive for February 2014

Government Applauds CVS, Sues Little Sisters of the Poor!

A Message from the Executive Director
Tuesday, February 11, 2014
Dear Friends,

As you may have seen in the news, or read in your local newspaper, this week the Becket Fund filed a brief before the Supreme Court in the case entitled Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby.

At the core of this case is whether Americans have to give up their deeply held convictions when they start a family business.

We at the Becket Fund believe our laws not only guarantee the right to live according to our own consciences but that our way of life itself will be significantly and negatively affected if the government’s position takes hold.

This is because the government’s position is the following: On one hand, it continues to hail the idea of conscience rights as it applies to values it considers to be important, such as CVS deciding not to carry cigarettes. On the other hand, it has taken an aggressive, punitive and litigious position against organizations and individuals that live according to values contrary to those the government considers vital.

In particular, they have targeted two of our clients: arts and crafts retailer Hobby Lobby and the 175-year-old order of nuns called the Little Sisters of the Poor. Why are they targeted?  Over their stance on the Health and Human Services mandate which forces most employers to provide, at no cost, all  FDA-approved contraceptives, including four the government itself concedes may act to terminate life.

In both instances the government has wielded its enormous power and has used its megaphone to bully our clients. In the case of Hobby Lobby, the government has threatened fines of $1.6 million per day. This is the case even when the owners of Hobby Lobby, the Green family, are willing to provide excellent health insurance to its 16,000 full-time employees, including 16 out of the 20 contraceptives. In the case of the Little Sisters, the government decided that they were not religious enough to earn a religious exemption, and it demanded they sign a certification forcing their insurance provider to supply all the drugs the Sisters could not include in their plan. When the Sisters went to court the government mocked their concerns calling them “invisible dragons.” Last month even the Supreme Court stepped in to protect the Sisters by telling the Sisters that they can continue to pursue their case in court without signing this particular form.

The government stance has been so extreme that it has caught the eye and pen of traditional government and HHS mandate supporters such as Kirsten Powers and the wit of Washington Post writer Kathleen Parker

The Green family of Hobby Lobby and the Little Sisters of the Poor are only two of more than 300 plaintiffs that have sued the government.

We at the Becket Fund continue to defend Hobby Lobby and the Little Sisters. On February 24, we file again on behalf of the Sisters. On March 25, we go to oral argument before the Supreme Court.

Please stay tuned for developments.

P.S. In case you missed my last email, syndicated columnist Mona Charen wrote a terrific piece about the Little Sisters and Hobby Lobby. Read her exceptional column on both cases here.



February Council Meeting


Tuesday, February 25th, 7:30 P.M.

St. Anthony’s Rectory


All Masses at St. Anthony’s Church

Weekend of 29 – 30 March 2014

Volunteers Needed to Staff an Information Table

at the Rear of the Church

to Answer Questions and Accept Prospect Cards

To Confirm Your Availability, Please Call Financial Secretary

Tony Olszewski at (718) 389-0807

Thanks in Advance for Your Help!

STEVE CIRONE, Grand Knight


Abortion rate falls to 40-year low in US

By Associated Press

February 3, 2014 | 6:10am

The US abortion rate declined to its lowest level since 1973, and the number of abortions fell by 13 percent between 2008 and 2011, according to the latest national survey of abortion providers conducted by a prominent research institute.

The Guttmacher Institute, which supports legal access to abortion, says in a report being issued Monday that there were about 1.06 million abortions in 2011, down from about 1.2 million in 2008.

Guttmacher’s figures are of interest on both sides of the abortion debate because they are more up-to-date and in some ways more comprehensive than abortion statistics compiled by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

According to the report, the abortion rate dropped to 16.9 abortions per 1,000 women ages 15 to 44 in 2011, well below the peak of 29.3 in 1981 and the lowest since a rate of 16.3 in 1973.

The lead author, Rachel Jones, said there appeared to be no link to a decline in the number of abortion providers.

The drop in abortions was likely linked to a steep national decline in overall pregnancy and birth rates, she said.