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The Freedom of Choice Act
A Catholic Reponse
A Letter To All Catholics within the Diocese of San Jose
On A Matter of Extreme Seriousness - The
Freedom of Choice ACT, also known as F.O.C.A.
For a number of years, the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) has been introduced in Congress. This law, if enacted, would eliminate practically all restrictions on abortion. We do not know if FOCA will be reintroduced in the new session of Congress; however, the risk that it might is reason enough for us to act at this time, so that our representatives in Washington, D.C., can hear our voices.
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has developed a postcard campaign to inform Congress and to educate the public about this grave threat to the common good. Today, I am asking you to take a few moments to share with our Senators and Representatives your conviction that the passage of FOCA would seriously threaten the welfare of our nation by using the postcards available at the parish. (editor's note, the link above takes you directly to this area of the USCCB website)
This postcard includes the following message:
At this time of serious national challenges, Americans should unite to serve the good of all, born and unborn. The Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA), the most radical and divisive pro-abortion bill ever introduced in Congress, would create a “fundamental right” to abortion that government could not limit but would have to support. FOCA would overturn many existing widely supported policies, including laws protecting parental involvement and conscience rights and those preventing partial-birth abortion and taxpayer funding of abortion.
If FOCA were to be signed into law, it would eliminate current “conscientious objection” provisions for hospitals and healthcare workers. This could have severe repercussions for Catholic Healthcare in the United States. In the same way, regardless of their own consciences on the matter, some doctors and other healthcare providers who wish to continue practicing medicine may be required to perform or participate in abortions. Rather than making abortion a rarity, the passage of FOCA would promote this violence against the unborn.
This is not a partisan issue; it is a matter of conscience, in keeping with the principles of our faith. Our nation truly needs to work together in these trying times. Our treatment of the most vulnerable members of our society – the unborn, the poor, the elderly and the ill – will be a true indicator of whether we embrace the lofty principles upon which our nation was founded.
May the Lord of Life shower abundant blessings on you, your families and your loved ones.
With every best wish and kind regard, I remain,
Patrick J. McGrath
Bishop of San Jose
Information About The Freedom Of Choice Act
The Knights of Columbus have been and will continue to be at the forefront of fighting this hideous piece of legislation. To that end, this web site will provide both members and the Catholic populace at large with information about the Freedom of Choice Act.
Information about the Freedom of Choice Act and the Church's efforts to oppose it can be found by going to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishop's website's Prolife page: http://www.usccb.org/prolife/
If it has not occured in your respective parish within the Diocese of San Jose, the postcards, mentioned above in Bishop McGrath's pastoral letter, will be explained and handed out at all of the Masses throughout the Diocese.
Contacting Your Congressional Representative
The Diocese of San Jose and its immediate neighbors have four (4) distinct congressional districts. They are: Congressional Districts 13, 14, 15, and 16. As a service to all of the Catholics within the Diocese of San Jose, we are going to provide you with information that will help you determine who your congressional representative is and direct links to their respective websites. In the information presented below, we are including direct links to a, an actual map of the congressional district, as well as b, a link to the contact information of the respective legislator.
The two other congressional districts are the 12th congressional district. This district is located on the peninsula. The 17th congressional district is south of the Santa Clara Valley.
We Are Not Alone In Our Fight Against
The Freedom of Choice Act
We are very pleased to provide you with the links to other Pro-Life organizations who are mobilizing against the Freedom of Choice Act. Please feel free to visit these websites as the information they contain is excellent:
and there are many, many, many more items of information both for and against the Freedom of Choice Act. For those of you who want to really become educated about this issue, simply do a Google search on the term Freedom of Choice Act and hit the enter key.