Sigh: As Catholics Sue Obama over Contraception,Vatican Continues to Pursue Government Healthcare

Posted: May 24, 2012 7:26 PM

Despite the tribulations the American Catholic Church has been suffering with the Obama administration, the Vatican continues to pursue government-enforced universal healthcare. Its ambassador to the United Nations recently issued a statement encouraging all member nations to move toward a system of universal healthcare, implemented by government.

The Vatican said the Catholic Church is "committed to universal healthcare coverage" in a release Thursday that described a speech by one of its leaders before the World Health Assembly.

Archbishop Zygmunt Zimoski told the meeting in Geneva on Wednesday that the Vatican supports Resolution WHA64.9, a measure that would urge countries to "plan the transition of their health systems to universal coverage."

"My delegation strongly believes that … fundamental values such as equity, human rights and social justice need to become explicit policy objectives," Zimoski said.

Unfortunately, the Church keeps turning to the public option to fulfill its social justice mission -- but that's exactly what got it into the contraception coverage mess. Now, a number of Catholic institutions, universities, and organizations are suing the government over the contraception mandate. Clearly, the Catholic-government alliance in the U.S. has failed:

"We have tried negotiation with the administration and legislation with the Congress — and we’ll keep at it — but there's still no fix," [Archbishop Timothy Dolan] said.

"Time is running out, and our valuable ministries and fundamental rights hang in the balance, so we have to resort to the courts now."

The Church want the government to assist in insuring everyone, yet acts affronted when public officials impose regulations contrary to Catholic doctrine. Improving access to health insurance is an admirable and important goal; however, the answer certainly does not lie with increased government intervention. The Church will never win if it gets in bed with the government to solve the healthcare crisis. As we've seen with the contraception mandate, what many people consider standard in a healthcare policy is opposed to Catholic teaching.

If the Church truly wants to ameliorate the healthcare problem, it would encourage fewer government regulations, thereby making healthcare more affordable and accessible. The government will never enact a policy the Vatican can fully support; the best thing it can do is get out of the way, and allow the Church to fulfill its mission in good conscience.