To the editor:
The expanded "Letters" section for March was a welcome addition. It was interesting reading the perspectives of more people around the diocese. Disagree about the proper functions of the state though we may, it makes me glad that within the Church, where debate is possible it is robust and there is not homogeneity of thought. Sadly, two responders to Father Catoir implied that he somehow gave up his right to opine upon ordination, but perhaps that can be chalked up to high emotions.
Mr. Muscato’s letter, however, requires a response. To wit: The use of contraceptives for the purpose of birth control is an intrinsic evil. This highlights the central error in his letter: Contraceptives for birth control are not a "health benefit". Even so, Catholic employers are not called to "deny" them — under what pretext could one bar an employee from procuring them via an alternate channel? Rather they are bound by conscience to not be an accessory in their procurement. This right of conscience is what must be defended by all who value religious freedom.
This teaching on contraceptives may seem difficult, but it is not some invention of the Church. It is pre-Christian — it arises from the natural law. The law Our Creator wrote into our hearts, that is "right, perfect, trustworthy, more desirable than gold, sweeter than honey" (Psalms 19:8-11).
That our Church is one of the few remaining institutions defending the natural law is something in which we should take pride as faithful Catholics. That we have the freedom to follow our consciences is something in which we should take pride as Americans, and defend accordingly.