Court Grants Catholic TV Network Reprieve From Birth Control Mandate, Citing Hobby Lobby Decision
Citing the new U.S. Supreme Court decision on the Hobby Lobby case, the Eleventh Federal Circuit Appeals Court issued an injunction Monday providing the Eternal World Television Network (EWTN Global Catholic Network) with a reprieve from enforcement of the ObamaCare HHS Mandate.
According to Catholic World News, while the court did not decide the merits of the EWTN lawsuit, the injunction does block fines that would have been charged against EWTN beginning July 1 for failure to comply with the contraceptive mandate that required that the network pay for employees' birth control.
“On the same day as the Hobby Lobby decision, the Eleventh Circuit protected religious ministries challenging the same government mandate,” said Lori Windham, senior counsel at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which represents EWTN. “It’s time for the government to stop fighting ministries like EWTN and the Little Sisters of the Poor, and start respecting religious freedom.”
Mother Angelica, a cloistered nun, founded a small television network in her monastery garage 33 years ago, with a mission to spread the teachings of the Catholic faith. Today, EWTN has become the largest religious media network in the world, with 24 hours-per-day programming, including daily mass and worship, transmitted to televisions in more than 230 million homes, in more than 140 countries and territories.
“We are thankful that the Eleventh Circuit protected our right to religious freedom while we pursue our case in court,” said EWTN Chairman and CEO Michael P. Warsaw. “We want to continue to practice the same Catholic faith that we preach to the world every day.”