Lansing Update: Extreme Abortion Bill Fails in Congress and more…

In this update:

Extreme Abortion Bill Fails to Advance in U.S. Senate Vote

The U.S. Senate this week failed to advance a bill that would have imposed abortion on demand nationwide at any stage of pregnancy and eliminated pro-life laws at every level of government.

The move to advance H.R. 3755 - deceptively titled the Women's Health Protection Act - failed to garner enough votes Monday.

The U.S. Capitol

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) had urged Catholics across the nation to contact their senators to vote against the legislation.

"Passing H.R. 3755 would have led to the loss of millions of unborn lives and left countless women to suffer from the physical and emotional trauma of abortion," wrote Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore and Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York in response to the vote. Archbishop Lori is chair of the USCCB Committee on Pro-Life Activities and Cardinal Dolan leads the Committee for Religious Liberty.

"Rather than providing comprehensive material and social support for a challenging pregnancy, H.R. 3755 fails women and young girls in need by instead offering a free abortion as the 'solution' to their difficulty. Women deserve better than this," the bishops said.

Thank you to all who responded to the call to reach out to Michigan's senators before the vote to urge them to vote no. It's important to let lawmakers know where their constituents stand on legislation, and more people speaking up makes for more effective advocacy. Michigan's two U.S. senators, Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters, both voted in support of the bill.

Bill Expanding Mandatory Reporters of Child Abuse Considered by State Senate

More professional occupations would be required to report any suspected cases of child abuse or neglect they hear about or see in a House bill supported by MCC.

House Bill 4880, sponsored by Rep. Roger Hauck (R-Mount Pleasant), would add physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, occupational therapists, and athletic trainers to the list of mandatory reporters of child abuse.

MCC supports the change in keeping with the Church's commitment to preventing abuse of children.

The bill has passed the House and was up for consideration in the Senate Health Policy and Human Services Committee but was not voted on this week.

Other mandatory reporters under Michigan law include law enforcement officers, members of the clergy, school counselors or teachers, school administrators, physicians, nurses, physician's assistants, dentists, psychologists, licensed professional counselors, social workers, and regulated childcare providers, among others.

Most Rev. Jeffrey Walsh Officially Installed as Sixth Bishop of Gaylord

Most Rev. Jeffrey J. Walsh was installed today as the sixth bishop of the Diocese of Gaylord during a Mass to celebrate his episcopal ordination at St. Mary Cathedral in Gaylord.

Bishop Walsh, 56, was previously a priest of the Diocese of Scranton, Pennsylvania and served as pastor of two parishes there. Bishop Walsh's appointment by Pope Francis was announced in December 2021.

In his role as bishop of the Diocese of Gaylord, Rev. Walsh will also join the MCC Board of Directors, comprised of the bishops of Michigan's dioceses as well as one priest, one religious sister and five laypersons. To learn more about Bishop Walsh, visit the Diocese of Gaylord's website.

Former Bishop of Grand Rapids and Gaylord Passes Away at 92

Most Rev. Robert J. Rose, Bishop Emeritus of the Diocese of Grand Rapids, went home to be with the Lord on Ash Wednesday, March 2. He was 92 years old.

Bishop Rose was a dear friend to MCC, having served the Conference both as a Board member and Chair of the MCC Finance Committee during his time in episcopal office in the Diocese of Gaylord and the Diocese of Grand Rapids, which spanned from 1981 to 2003 between the two dioceses.

"He was a strong supporter of the work and mission of MCC and was passionate about its advocacy for human life, social justice and the common good," said Paul A. Long, MCC President and CEO.