Archdiocese of St. Louis, Catholic Charities of St. Louis Join HHS Mandate Lawsuit

The Archdiocese of St. Louis and Catholic Charities of St. Louis announced Monday that they are taking legal action against the federal government. Archbishop Carlson announced that the lawsuit challenging the legality of the HHS abortion-drug mandate was filed in court Monday.

In addition to the Archdiocese of St. Louis and Catholic Charities of St. Louis, at least 40 other Catholic dioceses and organizations, including the Archdiocese of New York and the University of Notre Dame, have filed suit against the federal government.

Archbishop Carlson said the Church “had pursued every other imaginable option to correct this problem.”

“Right now the future is unclear, and any scenario that forces us to violate our moral convictions is unacceptable. At the same time, any scenario that forces our St. Louis area hospitals, schools, and charities to close would be devastating to the many people employed and served by these institutions,” Archbishop Carlson said.

The mandate, which is poised to take effect in August, requires employers, religious and otherwise, to provide coverage for sterilization, contraceptives and abortion drugs in their health plans. The narrow exemption for religious employers would require Catholic organizations to serve primarily Catholics. Therefore, organizations such as Catholic Charities of St. Louis would not be exempt because they serve non-Catholics.

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