National Catholic Reporter

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Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

Court hears arguments in Little Sisters of the Poor appeal, two others

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Speaking on the steps of a federal courthouse Monday in Denver, the mother provincial of the Little Sisters of the Poor said the religious order cannot and "should not have to" choose between "our care for the elderly poor and our faith."

Sr. Loraine Marie Maguire said that is what the U.S. government is demanding by requiring the order to comply with the Affordable Care Act's contraceptive mandate.

Judge grants Ave Maria University temporary injunction on HHS mandate

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A federal judge in Florida has granted Ave Maria University's motion for a preliminary injunction to keep the Catholic university from being forced to follow the latest procedures that nonexempt religious employers must use to opt out of the contraceptive mandate.

The ruling Tuesday from Judge James S. Moody of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida came as Ave Maria was days away from having to pay fines to the government for noncompliance.

USCCB: New rules to opt out of HHS mandate still unsatisfactory

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The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops on Wednesday urged the federal government "to reconsider" its new rules to allow religious institutions -- and potentially some for-profit companies -- to opt out of the contraceptive mandate in the Affordable Care Act.

On Aug. 22, the Obama administration issued rules it described as a "work around" to offer religious employers who are not exempt from the mandate a new way to opt out of coverage they find morally objectionable.

The rules also provide some for-profit companies a way to opt out.

USCCB: Government report 'confirms' suspicions about Affordable Care Act abortion coverage

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The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops released a statement Tuesday saying a report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office "confirms" the bishops' suspicions about abortion coverage through the Affordable Care Act.

"Despite repeated claims by President Obama and other supporters that the ACA would not promote abortion," the statement reads, "the report identified over a thousand health plans eligible for federal premium subsidies that cover elective abortions."

HHS tries new modifications to contraceptive coverage rules

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Late last month, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued a new round of modifications to a federal mandate requiring employers to provide contraceptive care to employees under the Affordable Care Act.

In keeping with modifications past (this is the eighth), the new rules have triggered yet another dustup in the ongoing fight between religious liberty advocates and the Obama administration, even as their effects remain unclear.

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