Archbishop of Hartford: Obama Mandate Will Impact November Election

President Obama’s controversial mandate on contraception is making headlines across the nation, and the leader of Catholics in Connecticut is calling it a “war on religion.”    Archbishop Henry Mansell is our guest this weekend on Face the State, and during the taping he laid out the church’s case against the federal government’s edict that Catholic organizations provide birth control to their employees.

Mansell explained why the church is against artificial birth control, and what negative impact the mandate would have on Catholic entities here in our state:  Catholic Charities, St. Francis Hospital, Fairfield University, and more.     Census figures show Connecticut to be one of the most Catholic states in America.

Mandell was highly critical of the mandate saying it “shows a terrible lack of feeling and a real knowledge of the issues.”    I also asked him if felt Catholics will make their opinions known in the November election.

“I think it will have an effect, and enormous effect because this is fundamental in our lives our lives as citizens of the United States and as members of the Catholic church and other churches.”   Mansell said the Archdiocese, which oversees the other two dioceses in Connecticut and the Diocese of Providence, has received an outpouring of support from other religious leaders in the state: Baptist,  Jewish, and more.   Mansell said those leaders fear they too could be impacted in the future, suggesting the Obama administration could implement mandates.

“If you are going to go this far to violate religious liberty there is no end to what you will do.”

 During the interview we also talked about the Archbishop’s long conversation with a seemingly sympathetic Congressman John Larson.

In the spirit of full disclosure, I am Catholic, went to Catholic school, and was even married by Archbishop Mansell’s predecessor, Archbishop Daniel Cronin.

You can watch the entire interview with Archbishop Mansell, this Sunday morning at 11 only on Face the State on Channel 3.   

UPDATE:  here is the interview   http://www.wfsb.com/video?autoStart=true&topVideoCatNo=default&clipId=6754727

also read:  http://dennishouse.wordpress.com/2012/02/03/dueling-sunday-messages-at-church-and-on-face-the-state/


28 replies »

  1. I’m sorry…here’s the bottom line (as I see it)…if you believe it so Archbishop M..then regardless of what the government mandates…your good little Catholics…they will refrain from birth control.So it will be of no consequence to you.


    • I do agree. I just can’t get out of my mind all the sexual assault cases that have been done lately. Birth control is wrong but sexual assault is alright? Please help me understand.


      • I’m sorry, who EVER said sexual abuse was ok? Because not everyone in the Catholic Church “practices what they preach” it makes all of us Catholics sexual abusers? There are bad people everywhere, not just in the Catholic religion.


      • WHAT?? Who said the Catholic Church approves Sexual assault? Your accusation is Ad Hominem. All the priests that were found guilty of sexual abuse are not currently priests and serving time in prison. So, I ask you, why do you think the Catholic Church approves sexual abuse?


    • Your “bottom line” seems to be missing the point completely. Not everyone employed by these Catholic organizations is Catholic. Plenty of people who work at St. Francis hospital or Fairfield University are not Catholic. Perhaps they believe in birth control. It is their right to do so. However, the Catholic Church that is employing them should NOT have to go against their beliefs and provide them with birth control. The government has zero right to force a religious organization to participate in something they believe to be wrong.


  2. I was under the impression that the Pres had rescinded the mandate as it pertained to Catholic practices?? Is this incorrect? As far as the Catholic church… I was “raised” as a Catholic (though not very well)… and my husband, who was ‘raised’ in the faith,.. yet when we ‘broke the rules’ we were thrown out of the parish house by the priest….We broke the rules by not abstaning as the Church “mandated”.. and we found ourselves in “the perdicament” for lack of birth control… the ‘Church”- that my husband of 40 years was taught was going to sustain his soul… didn’t… We have been married for 40 years (with a 10 year break), and have survived the miscarriage of one child and the loss of an adult child(21 y/o daughter) and have seen our ‘mistake’ become a productive man… Will the Cardinal take on all of the unwanted mistakes for lack of birth control?? I don’t believe the Church has or will; it’s time for the “Church” to stop burying (sp) their head in the sand and realize that the time has come to finally accept the here and now……..


  3. But, prescribing Viagra is totally acceptable? HA! WHAT A JOKE!

    The Catholics finally have a small voice in the election and are making a mountain out of a molehill as usual.
    Listen up Priests, Bishops – et al – You have NO right to counsel people about their reproductive choices while you sit on your shaky throne of celibacy. Try being a working Catholic mom (I’m talking under-paid,minimum wage, floor washing hospital porters and other service type jobs we NEED to keep our economy moving) with mouths she already has to scrape, beg & borrow to feed, clothe, house and educate. You people are as cruel as you’ve been for centuries. President Obama is a realist and a true humanitarian. War on Religion? You’re all crazy. If there’s a war on religion, The Vatican should be the first to be shut down.


    • How on Earth is Viagra comparable to birth control?! Viagra allows a man to fully enjoy the physical act of love with his wife. Birth control prevents life from becoming. The two drugs couldn’t be more different. I am a working Catholic mother, and don’t believe in birth control, and therefor don’t believe I should have to pay for someone’s birth control if I were to employ them. It’s absolutely a person’s right to choose whether or not to use birth control based on thier own beliefs! I agree one hundred percent! It has to go both ways though, and the Church should not be forced to pay for something that goes against their belief system just to accomodate someone else’s.


  4. Ridiculous…..how many people work in these institutions that are NOT Catholic? so therefore its a doubt standard…Catholics are imposing their rules on non-catholics!!!!! Catholics pick and choose which rules they will abide by (I know as I AM a Catholic)…they should have a choice and not be penalized…Archbishop should fix the pedophile problem and stop worrying about birth control!!!! Maybe with birth control we will have less pedophiles….


    • and obama is imposing his rules on catholics , why should i have to pay for your birth control and abortions when i dont agree with them , its just wrong and its murder!


    • Catholics are not imposing their rules on non-catholics. They’re not saying “you can’t use birth control”. They’re saying, we don’t have to pay for your birth control. We don’t have to agree with your choice to use it. We can respect your choice, but in no way should we have to agree with it and help you sustain it by footing the bill.


  5. The president’s so-called ‘concession’ was nothing of the sort. It was a distinction without a difference and Obama, Sibelius and the Democrat regulators in HHS knew it before they made it. What is really at stake here is much larger than contraception or abortion and the Catholic church.

    If the Obamacare insurance mandate is allowed to stand, it will open the door to all manner of government intrusion into every facet and corner of our lives – all under the canard of “preventive health.” Viz., if Obama’s solons in HHS want to link cancer with air pollution, they will be able to govern not only emissions (with a willing and compliant and EPA administrator eager to do so) but also the cars, trucks and buses that emit them.

    Of course, they’re already doing this, but the added impetus of the healthcare mandate will open new regulatory fronts and avenues for their mischief. Have no doubt: contraception is merely the thin edge of a regulatory wedge that they will drive through every aspect of our lives and our economy.

    If Americans wish to protect what is left of our Constitutional Republic, they need to vote Mr. Obama out of office in November along with all of his Democrat enablers – even if they’re just running for dog catcher.

    Remember in November.


  6. DId Channel 3 just give free air time to a Catholic bishop to spin his twisted view of female sexuality and didn’t invite on the show anyone from Planned Parenthood or the Obama administration to debate the bishop? Great piece of journalism, er, propaganda, Dennis!


    • Archbishop Mansell’s appearance comes two weeks after Congressman Chris Murphy appeared on the program and voiced his support for President Obama’s mandate.


  7. Connecticut is very fortunate to have a man of such integrity as Archbishop Mansell. He chooses his words very carefully.


    • He chooses his words carefully…like when he claimed that there is a war being waged against the Catholic Church? Maybe it’s time we start taxing churches and synagogues so people like the Archbishop can spend more time dealing with day-to-day reality rather than trying to impose their views on everyone.


      • Who exactly are they trying to impose their beliefs on? Simply because they won’t change what they believe it means they’re trying to impose their beliefs on others? It’s actually quite the opposite. The government is imposing THEIR belief system on the Church by attempting to force them to comply with this rule. They’re not saying birth control should be made illegal, they’re saying they’re not going to pay for it due to their own belief system, and they should have every right to do so. Women can go to Planned Parenthood and get their birth control if they need it so badly. It’s not like there are no other avenues for them to get it if they Church won’t pay for it.


  8. well maybe if people would practice abstainance until they married and then practiced the rythem method until they were ready to have children , there would be no need for controversy on this subject, but as it is some people lack morals and only do what makes them feel good and then look for a easy fix because they cant take the responsiibilty for their actions, they are lazy and cant be bothered . and before you all start up again about pedofiles and priests and blah blah blah , dont wanna hear it , its not all priests same way all teachers dont sleep with their students , you may not be able to change some people , but before ya all do the blame game , remember YOU and you alone are responsible for your own actions !


    • Are you serious? Who are you to judge anyone’s morality? Oh, sure, you don’t want to hear anyone say anything bad about priests being pedophiles (which of course, you can’t even spell correctly) but you’re quite comfortable yammering on about the rhythm method and how ‘some people lack morals’. People like you are what’s wrong with religion…the presumption that because you go to church and blindly obey what the priests and bishops say that you are somehow qualified to judge other people. I went to Catholic school and seem to remember that Jesus forgives and God alone judges mankind. Not priests or bishops or popes or laity. God.


  9. Most people fail to realize that our basic constitutional right to freedom of religion is at stake here. Obviously there are many who don’t abide by Catholic teachings or don’t agree with it but that is no reason to tell the Catholic institutions that they should pay for contraceptives. If this is allowed to fly, what next? Americans really need to wake up to the damage the Obama administration is doing to our rights and vote him out so we can try and salvage what is left of our country.


  10. The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford is blessed to have Archbishop Mansell as our spiritual leader. He is a man of integrity and truth and he is not afraid to preach the Catholic faith. Thank you, Archbishop for speaking the truth in love.


  11. Does St . Francis Hospital, Fairfield University, or any other institution owned by the Catholic Church receive any sort of federal funding to support those institutions or their initiatives? If so, shouldn’t the diocese return that money if it does not want to be subjected to the mandates put forth by the Federal government? Also, isn’t it the health insurance company that usually dictates what they will or won’t cover based upon the premiums they receive or the package they have negotiated with their clients? On an aside, there are also many medical reasons why woman may use birth control as well as financial reasons.


  12. After listening to the Archbishop speak I can’t help but wonder why these guys aren’t paying taxes because clearly they’re more about imposing their beliefs on others and controlling people’s lives than doing good in the world.


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