In a rare act of dissent, five circuit judges have denounced a ruling by a federal court against a group of nuns trying to get an exemption from the federal government's birth control mandate, calling the decision "clearly and gravely wrong."
In July, a three-judge panel of the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against the Little Sisters of the Poor, arguing that the Catholic order cannot be exempted from the Department of Health and Human Services' birth control mandate.
In the dissent published Thursday, five circuit judges argued that the panel decision against the nuns was "clearly and gravely wrong — on an issue that has little to do with contraception and a great deal to do with religious liberty." more >>
A coalition of conservative pastors including Robert Jeffress and Ed Young have sent an amicus brief to the Texas Supreme Court stating that it is "unconstitutionally inefficient" for the state to prohibit taxpayer dollars from going to religious-based private schools when there are students who want to attend such institutions instead of public schools.
As the Texas Supreme Court is weighing whether or not to uphold a 2014 judgement that struck down the state's public school finance system, the U.S. Pastor Council, with the help of the of lawyer Briscoe Cain, filed a brief arguing that the court should uphold the state judge's ruling because the current school finance system has failed its students.
The council, which includes a number of prominent Texas pastors like Jeffress, Young, Robert Morris and Steve Riggle, stated that 50 percent of state's public schools are not meeting student advancement goals established by the No Child Left Behind Act. The council contends that religious schools should be eligible to receive public funding through the charter school system in order to give Texas students who wish to go to religious schools the ability to do so. Additionally, such a rule would fulfill the Texas constitution's requirement of an "efficient" school system. more >>
A county clerk in Kentucky has been found guilty of contempt and sent to jail for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples due to her own religious objections.
Kim Davis, the clerk at Rowan County who garnered national attention for refusing to issue the marriage licenses, was found in contempt of court Thursday by U.S. District Court Judge David Bunning.
After initially arguing pro-choice students would feel left out, a Nevada school district changed its position and will allow an on-campus pro-life student club.
Angelique Clark of West Career and Technical Academy in Las Vegas can now start a pro-life club, according to a decision rendered by the Clark County School District earlier this week.
When her request was first denied, a vice principal told Angelique Clark that a "pro-life club would make pro-choice people feel left out." more >>
March for Life, the organizers of the largest pro-life event in the U.S., won a historic victory Monday when a federal judge stopped the Obama administration from forcing the group to pay for drugs that could cause an abortion.
The lawsuit, March for Life v. Burwell, was filed in July of 2014 through the Alliance Defending Freedom after the healthcare mandate forced non-religious employers to provide coverage for contraception, including drugs that could induce an abortion, and planned to financially penalize any who didn't.
Jeanne Monaghan Mancini, the president of March for Life, told The Christian Post that it felt "incredible" to resist the mandate and that "justice was served" when their small organization prevailed. more >>
Lawyers from Americans United for Separation of Church and State are warning public officials in New York City, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. that extensive preparation at taxpayers' expense for Pope Francis' visit later this month is a violation of the U.S. Constitution. Quoting an appeals court ruling, such aid is the type of "specific evil" the First Amendment "was designed to prevent," the group said.
The organization, which advocates for a strict separation view of the religious freedom clauses of the First Amendment, sent a letter to the mayors of the respective cities and the heads of the Secret Service, National Park Service and the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority on Monday "to provide guidance on the constitutional limitations on governmental support of and involvement with the papal visit."
"Specifically, government bodies must not provide any aid to a Pope's religious activities that goes beyond the provision of services — such as police, safety, and security — that are regularly given for comparable public events of a similar size," states the letter, which was signed by the group's legal director Alex Luchenitser and legal fellow John McGinnis. more >>