Michigan Catholic Conference
(800) 395-5565
(517) 372-3940
510 S. Capitol Ave.
Lansing, MI 48933

Lansing Update: Learn How to Talk About Prop 3

In this update:

Prop 3 Strips Away Parental Consent for Minor Girls Seeking Abortions

This weekend begins the seven-week statewide education campaign to inform Michigan Catholics about Proposal 3 and urge them to vote no on this unlimited expansion to abortion.

As part of that series, Michigan Catholic Conference (MCC) will run a seven-part series breaking down the most concerning parts of the proposal. The articles were authored by John Bursch, a constitutional lawyer and former Michigan Solicitor General who represents MCC.

The following is part one of the seven-part series on Proposal 3:

This November, Michigan voters will be asked to consider Proposal 3 (the “Reproductive Freedom for All” proposal), which would amend Michigan’s Constitution to make abortion a fundamental right.

As Catholics, we recognize that “Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2270). That is because every person is wonderfully made in the image and likeness of God and is therefore of immense worth.

But we must also help our family members, friends, and neighbors understand that Proposal 3 goes much farther than merely restoring Roe v. Wade’s abortion regime. In fact, Proposal 3 invalidates more than two dozen Michigan pro-life laws and has many startling consequences.

For example, the proposal grants a fundamental right to reproductive freedom to “every individual”-with no age limits. So on its face, the proposal authorizes a minor to obtain an abortion without parental consent or even notice, even though a parent’s consent is always required to dispense medicine or perform the most routine medical procedure for a minor.

Proposal 3 supporters say that courts can put limits on this broad language. But that’s not true. A judge interpreting the Michigan Constitution must apply the words that the Constitution contains, and that means courts will be required to give effect to the broad phrase “every individual.”

No matter how a voter feels about abortion, Michigan’s Constitution should not be amended to strip parents of their right to be consulted before a minor child makes the serious decision to take her baby’s life. Please tell everyone you know: vote “NO” on Proposal 3 on November 8th.

John Bursch is a constitutional lawyer and former Michigan Solicitor General. Through Alliance Defending Freedom, he represents the Michigan Catholic Conference and Right to Life of Michigan in court to uphold Michigan’s pro-life laws.

Learn How to Speak About Proposal 3 During This Statewide Equipping Webinar

If you have been following Lansing Update emails, you probably know about Proposal 3 and plan to vote no on it. But you may be wondering how to talk to others about why they need to reject this proposal too.

Next week, the Diocese of Lansing is holding a virtual training for anyone across the state to become equipped for how to understand and talk about Proposal 3. You will learn from legal, medical and apologetics experts what you can say to change minds.

That training is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 29 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Pre-registration is required here, and space will be limited, so the time to sign up is now.

Use These Resources to Share the Facts About Proposal 3

With the campaign fully underway to defeat Proposal 3, there are now a variety of resources to help explain the dangers of Proposal 3. Here are just a few that are ideal for sharing on social media and with friends and family:

  • What is Proposal 3? An Attorney Explains: In just under three minutes, hear from MCC attorney Rebecca Mastee about what makes Proposal 3 so dangerous and extreme in Michigan and why, as she says in the video, “Michigan would become the abortion capital of the country and have one of the most permissive abortion laws in the world.” The Diocese of Lansing produced this video, along with several others about the proposal, which can be found at their YouTube channel.
  • Dangerous for Michigan — Proposal 3: This video produced by Faith2Action debunks how supporters have portrayed Proposal 3 and explains what the amendment would do, and does it all in an inspiring fashion.
  • A Doctor’s Take on Proposal 3: The campaign to defeat Proposal 3 continues to churn out television advertisements across the state, including this recent one featuring a doctor’s perspective about why Proposal 3 is confusing, misleading, and extreme.

Bills to Improve Adoption & Foster Care Clear Senate, Head to Governor

A legislative bill package intended to increase and encourage adoption in Michigan cleared the Senate with strong bipartisan majorities and is headed to the Governor’s desk for a signature next.

MCC supported several of the bills which are intended to improve the foster care and adoption process to help families who are caring for these children.

One such bill is House Bill 5978, which would require the state to work with entities that perform family finding and engagement services to help foster youth who are separated from their family to connect to family and friends who may assist in the foster youth’s care.

The bill would also have the state make efforts in family finding and engagement services on behalf of all current foster kids and would have to incorporate family finding and engagement services in all child abuse and child neglect investigations.

For more on the bills that were approved that MCC supported, click or tap here.

Bishops Raise Concerns Over HHS Rule Mandating Abortion, Violating Conscience Protections

The U.S. bishops are inviting the Catholic faithful to comment on proposed federal rules that the bishops believe will seriously impede Catholic hospitals, clinics, assisted living facilities, and health care workers from carrying out their work.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has proposed a rule to impose new mandates about gender identity, as it would be considered discrimination for a health care worker or Catholic hospital to object outright to performing gender transition procedures — such as the administration of puberty blocking drugs or surgery to remove healthy body parts — regardless of whether that objection is a matter of religious belief or clinical judgment, according to the U.S. bishops.

The proposed rule also suggests that the government may refuse to honor the right of health care workers and providers not to perform or participate in abortions. Therefore, the proposed HHS rule could function as both an abortion mandate and a gender transition procedure mandate.

The U.S. bishops are encouraging Catholics to encourage the HHS to clarify that “discrimination on the basis of sex” is not an abortion mandate, and that health care workers and medical facilities must be free to conscientiously object to gender transition procedures.

To join in this effort, click or tap here.

During National Migration Week, Remember the Dignity of the Stranger Among Us

This week, the U.S. Catholic Church marks National Migration Week, an opportunity to reflect on the circumstances confronting migrants, refugees, and victims of human trafficking, according to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). The week-long observation customarily concludes with the Vatican’s World Day of Migrants and Refugees (WDMR) on the last Sunday of September.

“This week provides a special opportunity for encounter, accompaniment, and prayer, as well as a chance for Catholics and others of good will to join together in support of those who depend on our collective voice,” said Bishop Mario E. Dorsonville, auxiliary bishop of Washington and chairman of the USCCB Committee on Migration, in a statement.

Leading up to National Migration Week, national news outlets reported that many migrant families were flown from southern border states to places like New York, Washington D.C. and Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts.

Several Catholic bishops spoke out against these measures, including San Antonio Archbishop Gustavo García-Siller, who wrote that, “To use migrants and refugees as pawns offends God, destroys society and shows how low individuals can (stoop) for personal gains.”

The National Catholic Reporter published an editorial that called out the decisions to ship migrant families to northern cities, noting that the dignity of the human person is the foundation of Catholic teaching and using people as objects to a political end is not consistent with Catholic teaching about humans’ inherent dignity.

Let us remember the humanity and dignity of those who seek refuge among us and to be ready and willing to welcome the stranger among us.

If you haven't done so already, please join the Catholic Advocacy Network to receive regular public policy updates—including Lansing Update—via email. For other news and information, follow MCC on Twitter, like MCC on Facebook, or visit MCC’s webpage.

Michigan Catholic Conference
(800) 395-5565
(517) 372-3940
510 South Capitol Avenue
Lansing, Michigan 48933
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