There is an assumption in certain political circles that if the HHS mandate regarding contraception and sterilization in all insurance plans does not include a broader conscience exemption, somehow Catholic institutions will learn to get along. But, in a letter to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Father John Jenkins, CSC, President of Notre Dame, makes a very telling point. He writes, "This would compel Notre Dame to either pay for contraception and sterilization in violation of the church's moral teaching, or to discontinue our employee and student health care plans in violation of the church's social teaching. It is an impossible position."
Father Jenkins makes a point that had not previously occured to me - or to anyone else whose writings on this topic I have seen. It is just as morally objectionable to stop providing health care coverage as it is to provide coverage for procedures we find morally objectionable.