Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

Notre Dame has decided to stand up and be counted in the struggle to preserve a robust tradition of religious liberty in America.

Notre Dame President, Fr John Jenkins, announced: “Today the University of Notre Dame filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana regarding a recent mandate from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).”

He points out that the issue at stake is not the morality of contraception, about which the Church is clear in its condemnation, and American society in its legality, availability, and widespread use.

“This filing,” Jenkins explains, “is about the freedom of a religious organization to live its mission, and its significance goes well beyond any debate about contraceptives. For if we concede that the Government can decide which religious organizations are sufficiently religious to be awarded the freedom to follow the principles that define their mission, then we have begun to walk down a path that ultimately leads to the undermining of those institutions. For if one Presidential Administration can override our religious purpose and use religious organizations to advance policies that undercut our values, then surely another Administration will do the same for another very different set of policies, each time invoking some concept of popular will or the public good, with the result these religious organizations become mere tools for the exercise of government power, morally subservient to the state, and not free from its infringements. If that happens, it will be the end of genuinely religious organizations in all but name.”

Quite right, and good for Notre Dame.

Comments are visible to subscribers only. Log in or subscribe to join the conversation.



Filter First Thoughts Posts

Related Articles