Vatican's Chief Justice Blasts Obamacare, Embassy Move

Thursday, 19 Dec 2013 09:07 AM

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Cardinal Raymond Burke, the Vatican's Chief Justice, says that the Obamacare contraception mandate contradicts the founding principles of the country.

Under the Affordable Care Act, nearly all health insurance plans have to provide coverage for contraceptives, sterilizations and abortion-inducing drugs.

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has called the regulation an "unjust and illegal mandate" that violates religious freedom under the First Amendment.

In an interview with EWTN's World Over program, the former St. Louis archbishop said, "The whole question, the idea that, yes, you can have freedom of religion but it's reduced now to freedom of worship, you can do whatever you want in the four walls of your church but, beyond that, what you believe in the depth of your heart is of no importance to the government of the United States of America—which, by the way, is an absolute contradiction of the founding principles of this nation."

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"That the nation doesn't care anymore, or the government, I should say, about this relationship [with the Vatican], I could believe it," Burke added.

Asked whether the Obama administration's relocation of the American Embassy to the Holy See sends the message that the U.S. does not think the Vatican is worthy of having a stand-alone embassy, Burke replied, "Well, it does give that impression, to be honest. But I have to say, given the way the present administration treats the Catholic Church in general, that wouldn't surprise me too much."

On Monday, Pope Francis announced changes at the Congregation for Bishops, the Vatican office that evaluates and nominates candidates for bishops around the world.

Some members of the congregation, including Cardinal Burke, were not reconfirmed.

See the interview below:



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