A Message from the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference

We ask for your prayers this week in two important events that figure to have a profound effect on our state and nation.

The first is the election, of course. We ask that you pray for a peaceful voting and vote-counting process, as well as a resolution that we all will accept, even though no election ends with everyone being happy.

Then on Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in a case that could decide whether or not Catholic Social Services of Philadelphia can continue to provide homes to thousands of foster children, as it has done for decades. The case is also likely to have an impact on religious liberty in America for years to come.

The arguments will be televised in case you would like to watch and we would like your prayers to help bring about a favorable outcome.

The case of Fulton v. Philadelphia involves single foster moms, Sharonell Fulton and Toni Simms-Busch. On Wednesday, Lori Windham, senior counsel at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, will appear before the Supreme Court to defend the moms’ right to foster children in partnership with their local Catholic agency. In 2018, the City of Philadelphia abruptly ended its decades-long partnership with Catholic Social Services as a result of their religious beliefs that marriage should be between a man and a woman.

A similar policy move by the Wolf Administration two years ago placed restrictions on Catholic adoptions in PA. The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference asked the Administration to reconsider its stance and to provide a religious exemption so that Catholic agencies across the state could continue their adoption and foster care services. We were denied. The move has forced most Catholic adoption services in Pennsylvania to close.

The argument for Fulton v. Philadelphia is scheduled for Wednesday at 10 a.m. and will be televised on C-SPAN.

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