hosp3-e1380055370914“It was extremely unwise of Obama to take on the Little Sisters of the Poor,” says Robert P. George, “They are simply too strong an opponent. What was he thinking?”

Prof. George was commenting on the fact that on Friday the Little Sisters received a permanent injunction from the Supreme Court protecting them from the controversial HHS mandate while their case is before the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals:

The injunction means that the Little Sisters will not be forced to sign and deliver the controversial government forms authorizing and instructing their benefits administrator to provide contraceptives, sterilization, and drugs and devices that may cause early abortions (see video). The Court’s order also provides protection to more than 400 other Catholic organizations that receive health benefits through the same Catholic benefits provider, Christian Brothers.

“We are delighted that the Supreme Court has issued this order protecting the Little Sisters,” said Mark Rienzi, Senior Counsel for the Becket Fund. “The government has lots of ways to deliver contraceptives to people–it doesn’t need to force nuns to participate.”

Read more . . .

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, January 27, 2014
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Have Icon, Will Travel
Alexander F. C. Webster, American Orthodox Institute

The ministry of an Orthodox Army chaplain in southwest Asia post-9/11.

A Moral Basis for Markets: A Response to James Stoner
Michael C. Munger, Public Discourse

All truly voluntary exchange should be allowed without state interference. But many exchanges that are not fully voluntary should be allowed, too. It is immoral to restrict the ability of market processes to create a space where right action is rewarded and immoral actions are punished.

Key findings about growing religious hostilities around the world
Agelina Theodorou, Pew Research Center

Our new report found that a third of the 198 countries and territories studied in 2012 had a high or very high level of social hostilities involving religion, the highest share in the six years of the study.

Why It’s So Hard To Come Out of the Homeschool Closet
Gracy Olmstead, The American Conservative

Why aren’t more people open about homeschooling? When people ask me where I went to high school, I usually have to take a deep breath before I reply. Here it comes. “I was homeschooled,” I’ll reply.

Acton Institute Director of Research and author of Tea Party Catholic Samuel Gregg joined host John Pinhiero for a discussion of his latest book and the Catholic influence on the American founding on Faith and Reason, Pinhiero’s new show on Holy Family Radio in Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo, Michigan. The wide-ranging discussion lasted a full broadcast hour, and can be heard using the audio player below.

admit oneAs I write this, it’s 10 degrees outside, with a windchill of 8 below 0. Not much fun, even if all you’re doing is scooting from a building door to your car.

Now imagine being homeless. And a trafficking victim.

Mary David writes that the severe winter weather is a burden on the trafficked population, even though shelters in larger cities work to offer longer hours and services to those on the streets:

But what about the abuse that takes place at homeless shelters? What about the fact that many well-meaning groups and organizations lack the resources or means to keep out pimps, recruiters for traffickers, and those who otherwise take advantage of helpless women and children? Those who target these locations because they know the vulnerabilities of the people who enter?

(more…)

Fighting off entrepreneurs! Taking on any threat to their power! Collect ’em all!

Mission:Work, Patheos, Faith, WorkPatheos has just launched a new channel called MISSION:WORK, which aims to host a wide and varied discussion about faith and work. Led by senior editor Chris Armstrong of Bethel Seminary, the site will serve as a hub of sorts, drawing content from a variety of places, including the Acton Institute, to cultivate a conversation on whole-life discipleship.

As described on the web site:

“MISSION:WORK is a place where conversation happens about work and faith. We cover topics ranging from daily life in the workplace, to what the Bible says about work and vocation, to economic systems and their relationship to Christian beliefs, to how to know if God is calling you to a specific job, to how the local church can better equip workers. We draw on content from several other websites pondering these issues, including Theology of Work.org, The High Calling, The Oikonomia Network, the Acton Institute, and the Kern Family Foundation, to find stories, testimonies, tips, biblical wisdom, and challenges for individuals, businesses, pastors, and civic leaders as we work to create a society where God’s economy brings human flourishing for all.” (more…)

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, January 24, 2014
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The Philosophical Basis for Religious Liberty
Michel Therrien, Crisis Magazine

We should be careful in the present public discourse around religious liberty. If we employ relativism to defend this right, we can be assured that this same rationale will come back to bite us.

A Fiscal Conservative Defends the Pope
Scott Fyall, Values & Capitalism

Fiscal conservatism and Catholicism’s teachings on helping the poor are compatible—but it is up to us to make it so.

On masculinity and the War on Poverty
Melanie Sturm, Washington Examiner

Rather than apply Band-Aids to the cancer of chronic unemployment — like unemployment-insurance extensions and minimum-wage hikes — political elites must focus on the real problem: Millions of males, especially less-educated men, are “unhitched from the engine of growth,” according to a 2011 Brookings Institution report.

Five Things Christians Need to Know about Income Inequality, and What You Can Do about It
Anne Bradley, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

Bringing about flourishing through good stewardship requires discerning the biblical principles that will lead us to understand whether income inequality is a problem, and if so, how we are to respond. The best way to summarize this tough topic is through these five points that are critical for Christians to understand in order to bring about greater flourishing, especially for the poor.