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University President Calls for Lenten Prayer and Action Against HHS Mandate

2/22/2012 - 8:56 AM PST

Catholic PRWire

STEUBENVILLE, OH (February 22, 2012) - Father Terence Henry, TOR, president of Franciscan University of Steubenville, issued the following statement today on the Health and Human Services mandate that will force religious institutions and all employers to purchase insurance policies that include morally objectionable services:

"Today, Ash Wednesday, marks the beginning of Lent, a season set apart for prayer, fasting, and penitence. As a Church, those are the most powerful weapons we have in our arsenal. They are our strongest line of defense against those determined to weaken and divide us. They also are the surest means of guaranteeing our fidelity, our steadfastness, in opposing evil. They are what keep us close to Christ and in the heart of the Church.

"At Franciscan University, we fully intend to offer our prayers and sacrifices this Lenten season for the Church in America. We will petition God to grant our bishops the grace to stand firm in their fight against the Obama Administration's unjust ruling, a ruling that mandates that all employers provide health care coverage to their employees that includes the costs of abortion-inducing drugs, contraceptives, and sterilization.

"We also will petition God to grant us justice--to thwart a decision that asks Catholics to become cooperators with intrinsically evil acts. Such a decision is a grave violation of religious liberty and a betrayal of our country's Constitution. Franciscan University is and will remain opposed to this wrongful decision. We cannot and will not comply with such an unjust law.

"As we begin this 40-day journey towards Easter, I invite Franciscan University's alumni and friends, as well as all people of good will, to join us in this fight against injustice. Take the time to educate yourself on the issues at stake, starting with a visit to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' Website, which provides an excellent analysis and recommendations for action. Also, see this time of testing as an opportunity to educate others about the beauty of God's plan for marriage, the family, and human sexuality. This is a teachable moment for many Americans: Treat it as such. Above all, pray with us that our great nation will not allow such an egregious violation religious liberty and freedom of conscience to stand. Never forget, with God all things are possible.

"May God's blessing be upon our country and our Church today and throughout this Lenten season."

Franciscan University of Steubenville has also created a resource page on the Health and Human Services mandate that includes Father Henry's written statement and a video message, plus articles and media interviews by Franciscan University faculty members and administrators, and other helpful resources. Go to


Franciscan University of Steubenville  OH, 43952 US
Tom Sofio - Associate Director of Public Relations, 


HHS Mandate, Franciscan University, Obama, Contraceptives, Lent, Abortion, Fr. Henry


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