A Catholic diocese in Nebraska states it will refuse to comply with a federal health care mandate that all employee health care plans cover contraceptives.
A letter was read at all masses in the Lincoln Catholic Diocese over the weekend stating that Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz would not comply with what it terms “the unjust decree” issued by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
Diocese Chancellor Father Daniel Rayer told Nebraska Radio Network affiliate KLIN that the federal government has overstepped its bounds.
“The diocese of Lincoln feels that this is an intrusion on the religious liberty of all Catholics and it really is also an intrusion on the religious liberty of all Christians as well,” Rayer said. “There are other Christians who also who would be opposed to this.”
The diocese will not extend coverage of conception services to employees at the diocese or at the hospitals and schools it operates.
Rayer stated the requirement intrudes on religious liberty.
“Never before has the federal government mandated that people have to buy something that violates their conscience, their moral consciences,” Rayer told KLIN.
Jane Monnich with KLIN contributed to this report.