If you haven’t heard the news, Hobby Lobby won their Supreme Court case against the federal government about providing birth control coverage for their employees. Hobby Lobby is owned by evangelical Christians who did not want to cooperate with sin by providing their employees with four specific kinds of birth control. These four drugs are widely recognized to be abortifacient, meaning, you guessed it, they directly cause the abortion of the newly conceived person. (Mind you, the FDA has approved 16 other kinds of birth control that Hobby Lobby does cover for their employees.)
And you ask, “What does it mean to me?” Here are a few answers for you:
There are employers all over the United States fighting in the courts for their religious freedom rights. These employers range from the Little Sisters of the Poor to Eden Foods to numerous manufacturing and insurance companies. This sets a hopeful tone for those cases, although not foolproof. As I said, it only covers 4 drugs. It also only covers “closely-held” companies which are defined as companies owned by 5 or fewer people. But, as one blogger said:
“It puts a couple of teeth back into what has rapidly been becoming a toothless concept of religious liberty in this country.”
2. This case highlights the chasm that exists between religious people and the rest of the culture.
The fact that this case is even a thing says a lot about the reality of being a religious person right now in America. I’ve run into it myself reading posts written by other young women on the internet. Sometimes it’s as if we are speaking two different languages. It is a bad sign when we are all talking past each other rather than to each other. This, I believe, is where John Paul II’s Theology of the Body will come in handy. It’s all in the name, folks! It takes a very human, very concrete look at reality and through it reaches to spiritual Truth.
Believe it or not, we are all human. We all love, we all hate, we all fear. We all care deeply about other people. We all share fundamental human needs and experiences: acceptance, rejection, security, insecurity, birth, death…we are all embodied souls. And this is where we can all meet. Clearly, religion isn’t a meeting ground anymore. Morality can’t be a meeting ground when so many people question it. But one thing has always remained the same: our shared humanity. Resist the urge to dehumanize “the enemy.”
3. How should you respond?
In addition to recognizing that we are all human, there are two more things you can do:
- Pray for our leaders. – That is actually specifically mentioned in Scripture as something we should all be doing anyway (1 Timothy 2:1-3)
- Be missionaries. – Learn about what the Church teaches and why it says it. Speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15).
I have to admit, this last point did come from an article in Christianity Today which is worth a read.
Speaking of reading, for more information, here is the actual Supreme Court opinion.
PS: A friend of mine noted something interesting. On this day 182 years ago, the first Miraculous Medal was struck. Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, pray for us!