Wednesday, May 25, 2016

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Catholic Education Daily


Bishop Condemns Catholic Insurance Agency for Complying with HHS Mandate reports that Sioux Falls, SD Bishop Paul Swain has asked diocesan representatives on the board and finance committee for a Catholic insurance agency resign because of the agency's decision to cover contraception in accordance with the Obama administration's Health and Human Service's contraceptive mandate.

In a letter, dated March 1, to the diocese's priests and the people of the diocese, Bishop Swain said that the action of Avera Health Plans has created scandal.

"Avera will now be materially cooperative in the termination of life," wrote Bishop Swain. "Avera's decision...creates public scandal; as a Catholic institution, its practice is of course inconsistent with Church teaching."

Bishop Paul Swain.

“Compliance with government requirements must not be viewed as licit reasoning for compromising moral teachings,” Bishop Swain added. “Sadly, we must consider whether a Catholic healthcare delivery system in our day will be able to balance the regulatory and financial obligations it faces in order to remain a viable business while maintaining its unique and important mission of the healing ministry of Jesus”

Bishop Swain asked Jerry Klein, the diocese's Delegate for Social Outreach, and Mike Bannwarth, Diocesan Finance Officer to resign from Avera Health Plans’ board and finance committee, respectively, “[t]o insure that their continued presence could not be interpreted as diocesan acquiescence and therefore cause an intensification of the scandal.”

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