Who will help pro-life employers?

Thank you for the thorough and thoughtful presentation of religious liberty (June 3 issue) about your and other Catholic organizations combatting the immoral government mandate and you supporting the Fortnight for Freedom. 

You mention one “Catholic business owner” who has filed a suit. 

Thousands of Catholic and Christian pro-life employers across the nation face the same issues in providing medical insurance for their employees. Unfortunately, no national organization of such employers exists to lead a challenge similar to that of the hierarchy’s. Who will spearhead such an issue? 

I urge you and the bishops to find some way to support the cause of conscientious pro-life employers in this grave affront to their freedom of religious conscience when providing medical insurance to employees. 

Edward Bode, Jefferson City, Mo.

Catholic social teaching

I have just read the letter by Nancy Dunne (“Host of problems,” May 27).  

Dunne did not see “any Catholic angle” in the report on tribal-environmental debate in the May 13 issue. Sadly, there may be a host of other readers who felt the same way.  

The Catholic Church has seven pillars of social teaching: 1. Life and dignity of the human person; 2. Call to family, community and participation; 3. Rights and responsibilities; 4. Option for the poor and vulnerable; 5. The dignity of work and the rights of workers; 6. Solidarity; and 7. Care for God’s creation. It is under the category of caring for God’s creation that the story has Catholic and catholic meaning.  

Unfortunately, many pastors confine themselves to “safe teaching” from the pulpit, and do not go deeply into social teaching and social justice.  

Susan C. Wieczorek, via email

Dire need for catechesis

Re: “Pope calls for stronger Catholic identity” (This Week, May 20). 

Pope Benedict XVI says that “providing young people with a sound education in the faith is the most urgent internal challenge facing the Catholic Community in your [our] country.” In the May 27 editorial (“Formation deficit”), it says: “A matter of first importance for Catholics must be adult faith formation.”  

These two observations sum up the gigantic problem facing the Catholic Church in the United States. What has led to the “religious persecution” that the Church is experiencing is due, in great part, to this lack of formation of Catholics in the Faith.  

In my parish, a group study of the Catechism of the Catholic Church is offered. However, very few people attend. People either “don’t have time,” or are not interested. But why don’t we have “time” when we make “time” for so many other nonessential things? Do we really “already know all that?” Why do 70 percent of Catholics no longer go to Church every Sunday? 

What we adults learned when we were children is not enough today; what our children are taught in our parish CCD classes is often not enough today. Times have changed, indeed, drastically. Today, in the hedonistic and secular multimedia culture in which we are immersed, it is important that we not only know our Catholic faith, but understand it and can explain to others the “why” of the teaching, particularly in matters of morality.  

Pam Haines, St. Petersburg, Fla.

Translation confusion?

Thank you for your article on Blessed Giuseppe Toniolo (“Lessons of the Church’s first (officially) saintly economist,” May 13). I think you gave a wrong impression on the work and significance of the new blessed when you said he “realized the teachings of Pope Leo XIII’s encyclical Rerum Novarum (On Capital and Labor).” I think it should read that Blessed Toniolo influenced the pope.  

“Realized” in Italian in this context could mean that the teachings of Toniolo were part of the ideas in the encyclical. I could be wrong. You have done a great service in bringing such a man to our attention. God knows we need saints in this arena.  

Terry Ianora, via email

Illegal vs. undocumented

Re: “Migration from Mexico to U.S. reaches standstill” (News Analysis, May 27).  

I counted no less than six places where writer Scott Alessi referred to the term “undocumented immigrant/worker” to describe Mexicans crossing our border. They are not undocumented, they are illegals.  

Further, it is a joke that the Pew Center reports “record numbers of deportations”: 282,000 out of an estimated 6.1 million?  

Further, in the article, according to CLINIC, “... it is a crime to look for work, it is a crime to give someone a ride.” Last time I checked, yes, that is aiding and abetting a criminal. 

I’m all for Mexican nationals coming to this country, but they must do it legally. 

Joe Negrich, Toledo, Ohio

Annulment numbers

Re: “Questions raised about easy annulments” (News Analysis, May 20). 

The fact that two-thirds of the world’s Catholic annulments are granted to the United States may be graphic evidence that our people are the ones who most desire to remain in the Church or return to it after having experienced bad marriages. I put it that the Church should gladly welcome them back or be overjoyed they wish to remain. 

Anthony Chima, Sun City, Ariz.