Monday, October 18, 2010

Cautionary Tales: Endangered Works of Mercy

It is safe to say that women's religious orders built the Catholic educational system in the United States. It is also safe to say that, not only did they build the Catholic health care system in this country, but the entire health care system in the USA owes itself to the pioneering work of the good sisters. Through the decimation of these orders in recent years, and various takeovers by health care conglomerates, the integrity of that system, including its ability to provide effective medical care to the disadvantaged, has been seriously impaired.

And it is about to be sold out indefinitely, by the very caretakers of its legacy. According to Thomas Peters of American Papist:

Three Scranton-area Catholic Hospitals are shutting down because of Obamacare regulations that are set to go into effect soon. The CEO of the hospitals, Kevin Cook, is on record saying Obamacare is “absolutely” responsible for their painful decision to shut down ... Sr. Carol Keehan – the nun and President of the Catholic Health Association, who famously received a “thank you pen” from President Obama for her work in turning Catholic congressman to give up their opposition to Obamacare, has been trying to bully Kevin Cook into changing his story about why his hospitals are closing, because she knows what a political powder keg the headline “Catholic hospitals closing because of Obamacare” will be in this critical election season.

Now, thirty pieces of silver would have been worth something, but a pen??? has produced a radio ad to air in the Scranton market. Catholics and others can learn the truth. Congressmen Paul Kanjorski and Chris Carney both voted for the health care reform bill, and both are facing tough challenges from pro-life alternatives this November.

The face of Catholic health care will change dramatically in the next few years. It will live on in both the care for children saved from abortion, and the support of their mothers as they get on with their lives. It will continue in the work of the Missionaries of Charity, who run facilities for victims of AIDS, including children born with the HIV-AIDS virus. So much damage has been done, as the trust of the faithful has been misplaced. The prominence of the Church in the medical apostolate will take decades to rebuild.

And perhaps, Deo volente, another Mother Teresa.

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