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Archbishop Wuerl defends dropping health coverage for Catholic Charities workers

Catholic World News - March 03, 2010

In a conversation with editors of the Washington Post, Archbishop Donald Wuerl defended the decision to eliminate health-care benefits for the spouses of employees at Catholic Charities. The archdiocesan agency made the change in reaction to a new law that requires institutions in the District of Columbia to provide equal coverage for same-sex partners.

Archbishop Wuerl denied that the policy change was a step away from payment of a "just wage" to employees at Catholic Charities. "The Catholic Church teaches to pay a just wage. The compensation package you use to pay that just wage isn't defined by the Church," he told the Post. "Employers have the right to frame compensation packages."

The archbishop said that in light of the clear conflict between the new DC law and the teachings of the Church, archdiocesan officials had "no choice" but to change their policy.

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  • Posted by: rpp - Mar. 03, 2010 10:26 PM ET USA

    This Church should FIGHT this, rather than give in. This is an intrinsically evil law. It is like forcing contraception and abortion coverage in insurance plans.

  • Posted by: Lilacs2me - Mar. 03, 2010 7:36 PM ET USA

    They should fight this thing to the Supreme Court. What are the spouses now supposed to do? Go get insurance on their own & pay and arm & a leg for an individual plan? Wimping out doesn't cut it in the secular atheist environment we now find ourselves in -- that is EXACTLY what they want.....drive us out of the marketplace!

  • Posted by: Minnesota Mary - Mar. 03, 2010 7:25 PM ET USA

    I think we are on the cusp of a full blown schism in the Church. The Churches that are faithful to the Teaching Magisterium and the Word of God will be penalized through penalties and heavy taxation. But on the bright side, we will now where the true Church is. We will know that the persecuted Church is the Church of Christ. We will see how small the Camp of the Saints really is.

  • Posted by: DrJazz - Mar. 03, 2010 7:19 PM ET USA

    The Archbishop can claim all he wants that he's paying just wages, but the facts of the matter regarding wages are these: 1. Health insurance premiums cost thousands of dollars per person; 2. Cutting workers' pay by that much, while prices and fees continue to rise, cannot be considered just. He's using Catholic Social Teaching to smokescreen his lack of fortitude, and punishing his employees for what the District enacted. And, yeah, why are openly homosexual people working for the Archdiocese?

  • Posted by: bppettie - Mar. 03, 2010 5:28 PM ET USA

    The real questions is: why are open homosexuals allowed to work for the church at all? bpp

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