Archbishop Chaput: HHS Mandate Remains “Unnecessary, Coercive, and Gravely Flawed”

In his weekly column, Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia addresses the latest attempt by the Obama administration to finesse a “compromise” with regard to the mandate from the Department of Health and Human Services.

As we know all too well by now, the HHS mandate requires that all employers, with very few exceptions, regardless of their religious beliefs or the dictates of their conscience, provide coverage for contraception and abortion-inducing drugs to their employees.

With the able assistance of Notre Dame Law Professor Gerard Bradley, Archbishop Chaput explains that the revised “accommodation” proposed by the administration, while appearing to extend exemptions to certain entities such as some hospitals and universities by shifting the responsibility for paying for the objectionable coverage, in fact does little or nothing to change the moral implications of the mandate’s requirements:

The White House has made no concessions to the religious conscience claims of private businesses, and the whole spirit of the “compromise” is minimalist.

Archbishop Chaput concludes his column with a more personal plea:  Things are getting bad…pray for me and my brother bishops.

One of the issues America’s bishops now face is how best to respond to an HHS mandate that remains unnecessary, coercive and gravely flawed. In the weeks ahead the bishops of our country, myself included, will need both prudence and courage – the kind of courage that gives prudence spine and results in right action, whatever the cost.  Please pray that God guides our discussions.

We will.



  • Chris R

    We have to back our bishops if we want to keep our religious liberty.

  • Msgr. Charles M. Mangan

    J.M.J. Archbishop Chaput is an extraordinary person. How blessed we are to have him proclaim the Truth regarding the sanctity of human life and the splendor of Holy Marriage.

  • Louise Hunt

    Over hundreds of years our Catholic Church has lots of priests and bishops who did and are speaking out. Bishop Chaput, a great Native American warrior, is one of them who talks for the native Catholic Americans, also. We keep him close in our Holy Spirit and pray for his special intentions.

  • Frantastic1

    I think chaput should try leading his flock and stop trying to be a politician.

    • Carolyn Izzo

      If standing against evil isn’t leading the flock then I don’t know what gospel they are preaching.

    • Chip Cush

      “leading his flock” is EXACTLY what he’s doing … too bad there’s not lots more like him. the time to be bold is NOW!

    • Paulspr

      I think Chaput is misleading his flock in order to score political points against a president that he just doesn’t like. Some of the points he made are simply fabrications and don’t reflect the reality of the law, which requires that EMPLOYEES choose to add additional coverage and that THE INSURANCE COMPANY pays for the additional coverage.

      • Phloont Manphredsing

        Chaput is a lifelong Democrat, as are the overwhelming majority of American bishops. It is ludicrous to accuse him of being a Republican trying to score political points. He is answerable to the Pope and to God, not to the voters.
        As for the HHS mandate: forcing you to pay for abortions and contraceptives is immoral and unacceptable, as it requires participation in an evil act.
        I suggest that you consult a basic text in Catholic moral theology, and especially that you educate yourself of the difference between formal cooperation and material cooperation, and especially of the difference between proximate and remote material cooperation. Then you will be better equipped to participate in this discussion than nearly everyone else.

        • abadilla

          I think Paul is gone with the wind and we won’t read him anyore but I could be wrong!

    • abadilla

      Archbishop Chaput is being a Catholic leader in the full sense of the term and why would you accuse him of being a politician?

  • abadilla

    Well, talk about getting ready for a fight but not a “dirty” fight but a fight with spiritual weapons.



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