Will the Little Sisters of the Poor, an order of Catholic nuns that operates homes for the aged, be driven from the United States by ObamaCare? According to the Daily Caller, it is a distinct possibility.
Founded in France in the 19th century by St. Jeanne Jugan, the Little Sisters of the Poor minister to low-income senior citizens in 31 countries. In the United States they operate 30 homes for the aged, accommodating over 2,500 people. They accept the elderly and hire employees without regard to race or religion — and that is where these kind, humble women come into conflict with the healthcare law.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has declared that employers must offer health insurance to their employees that includes coverage for sterilization and contraception, including drugs that can induce abortions. The mandate exempts churches and other organizations that hire and serve only members of their own faiths. Since the Little Sisters do not discriminate in hiring and serving, they will be forced to offer insurance covering services they find objectionable.
“The health insurance offered to employees of the Little Sisters of the Poor has always explicitly excluded sterilization, contraception and abortion from its covered services,” the Little Sisters explained in a statement last March. “This longstanding policy has never been a matter of controversy in our homes.”
Now, however, this policy is effectively being overturned by government fiat, forcing the sisters to choose between violating their consciences and serving America’s aged.
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Photo of nuns from the Little Sister of the Poor in 2008: AP Images