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Federal funds should not cover Congress members' abortions, bishops say

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The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops is urging the Obama administration to comply with a long-standing policy against subsidizing federal employee health care plans that cover abortions for members of Congress and their staffs.

A new rule proposed by the federal government makes no "mention of any limitation with respect to abortion coverage" for members of Congress and their staff, according to comments submitted by the USCCB to the federal Office of Personnel Management.

Hawaii bishop urges Catholics to mobilize against same-sex marriage

Bishop Larry Silva of Honolulu urged Catholics across the island state to oppose same-sex marriage in an "urgent request" to pastors.

In a letter that was included in parish bulletins the weekend of Aug. 24-25, Silva asked Catholics to pray the rosary daily over the next several weeks, "if possible" while walking around the state Capitol block, "so that just as God tumbled down the walls of Jericho, he will be able to do so through the prayers and action of his beloved people."

Atheist group can sue IRS over enforcement of pulpit politicking

A federal judge has ruled that the Freedom from Religion Foundation may continue its lawsuit over whether the Internal Revenue Service enforces a ban on the political activity of tax-exempt religious groups.

FFRF, a Wisconsin-based group for atheists and agnostics, filed a lawsuit after the 2012 elections, arguing that a lack of IRS enforcement was unfair. The IRS filed a motion to dismiss the case, saying taxpayers often do not have standing to sue other taxpayers.

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