This is up at The Pulse.
Last Friday, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced a new rule in relation to Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act, which will require all hospitals to perform abortions and sex change operations under the auspice of Title IX protections, or lose their federal funding, which includes Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements.
The rule did not include an exemption for religious freedom, although HHS does admit that “existing protections for religious freedom and conscience” may still apply — an ironic admission given the administration’s unwillingness to compromise with the Little Sisters of the Poor.
[…]What are the real world consequences of this?
Well, to start, a substantial portion of hospital revenue comes from Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements. A hospital simply can’t function without this funding. It’s not possible. So by potentially forcing religious hospitals to perform abortions and sex change operations against their beliefs, which most will not do, the HHS hospital mandate could effectively shut them all down.
Sixty-two percent of all hospitals in the U.S. are non-profit hospitals, and the vast majority of those have religious affiliations. A mass exodus of religious hospitals would completely shake the health care system, destroy communities, ruin livelihoods, and put thousands of lives at risk.
Right now, we live in a time where health care is under the control of the federal government. Many, many people of faith voted for a secular government to be in control of health care. They thought that it would be more “fair” than letting people control health care at the state or local level. Now they are finding out what happens when you let a big secular government take over huge parts of the economy. There are people of faith working in hospitals. If only their employer forced them to do a sex change or an abortion, they could move to another employer, perhaps in another state. But when you put the control up at the federal level, there is nowhere to run. You have to comply, or lose your job. And no matter how tough a Christian talks, no one can survive without food to eat and water to drink. We have to earn a living, and this President is making it impossible to work and be an authentic Christian at the same time.
Are we ready for pastors to talk about serious matters in church, now? Or is it still going to be the singing, the feelings, the piety? Maybe spiritual leadership needs to be expanded to include practical issues.