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Cardinal Dolan Spotlights Overseas Persecution
ICC Note:
Cardinal Timothy Dolan told an assembled group in Washington D.C. that persecution being faced by Christian’s overseas is of a “different order” than the challenges to religious freedom faced by American Christian’s. His statements come as Hobby Lobby launches a lawsuit against the Obama administration over the new health care mandate which many groups see as a violation of Christian beliefs. Hobby Lobby is the largest company, and the first group run by an evangelical, to take the mandate to court.
By Louise Radnofsky
09/12/2012 United States (The Wall Street Journal)- American Catholics’ concerns that the Obama health-law’s requirements threaten their religious freedom are “of a different order” to religious persecution overseas, the head of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said Wednesday.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan told Catholic leaders in Washington for a conference organized by the bishops on religious freedom in other countries that he believed there were “serious challenges” in the U.S., referring to the fight over whether religiously affiliated hospitals, charities and universities should be required to cover contraception in employees’ health policies.
That fight has become an election-year issue, and other Christian denominations have joined the Catholic campaign against the requirement, including bringing lawsuits. The latest suit was filed by the Christian owner of craft store Hobby Lobby, in the Western District of Oklahoma, Wednesday morning.
The cardinal said that it was “strategically necessary” for U.S. Catholics to pay attention to international issues “as our own laudable efforts to defend our ‘first and most cherished freedom’ here at home, are hollow and hypocritical if not coupled with a ringing solicitude for those under more overtly violent attack throughout the world.”
“As grave as these challenges remain, they are of a different order than those faced by Christians and other people of faith in many countries,” he said. “In the words of Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, Secretary for Relations with States of the Holy See, ‘Of course, nobody would confuse or equate this marginalization of religion with the actual persecution and killing of Christians in other areas of the world.’”

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