Members of the millennial-sourced Life Matters team work to rid the world of euthanasia, abortion, war and other instruments of what they term "aggressive violence."
They're Catholics, Protestants and secularists, veterans of pro-life and anti-poverty groups, with roots in different political parties. While some members live near the Life Matters Journal "home base" in Pittsburgh, others are part of a digital network that spans the country.
A three-judge panel's Feb. 11 ruling on a court challenge to the contraceptive mandate "says that the church is no longer free to practice what we preach," Pittsburgh Bishop David Zubik said.
The panel of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a decision by a federal judge in November to grant the Pittsburgh and Erie dioceses a temporary injunction against enforcement of the mandate.
An 18-year-old Pennsylvania man has been charged in the Dec. 13 rape of an 85-year-old retired member of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Baden.
The sister, who has not been identified out of respect for her privacy, was attacked in the parking lot of St. Titus Church in Aliquippa, about 30 miles northwest of Pittsburgh.
Andrew Bullock, 18, of Aliquippa, was arrested later that day in connection with the attack on charges of felony rape, aggravated assault, sexual assault, indecent exposure, simple assault and reckless endangerment.
A federal judge Nov. 21 said religious employers' right to adhere to their moral objections to the contraceptive mandate outweighs a government decision to widen access to contraceptives.