". . . and having done all . . . stand firm." Eph. 6:13


‘Violates the Dignity of the Human Person’: Catholic Bishops’ Leader Blasts VA Abortion Policy

March 8, 2024

A Catholic bishop is rebuking Biden’s Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for making a permanent rule change to allow the agency to commit abortions during all nine months of pregnancy.

After the reversal of Roe v. Wade in 2022, the VA adjusted its rules to allow for servicemembers and their families to seek abortions in certain circumstances, including in states where abortion is restricted or illegal. The VA posted in the federal register on Monday that the rule, originally said to be a temporary measure, is now permanent. The agency also boasted of committing 88 abortions in the first year of the rule being put in place.

On Thursday, Archbishop Timothy Broglio, head of the Catholic military archdiocese and president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), condemned the rule change. In a statement issued to The Washington Stand, Broglio said, “The notion that killing an unborn child can somehow be considered ‘medical or surgical care’ certainly violates the dignity of the human person and suggests that some lives are more important than others.” He added, “I deplore this decision that once more removes the right to life for the defenseless and inflicts untold physical and psychological trauma on mothers.”

Broglio also stated that VA Secretary Denis McDonough “exceeded his authority” in expanding the agency’s definition of “medical and surgical care” to include abortion, contradicting Section 106 of the Veterans Health Care Act, which even Monday’s rule finalization admitted “barred the provision of abortion…” Broglio responded, “However, nonsensically, the Department claims that other statutes, which never mention abortion, create in their silence, a right to abortion, even though abortion is specifically prohibited within the larger statutory scheme for VA Health Care.” He added, “This bald rhetoric ignores logic and basic tenets of statutory construction, and belies a relentless ideological pursuit of abortion even when it is plainly contrary to law.” The archbishop concluded, “The VA’s decision is at odds with the notion that the military protects the innocent.”

Since being elected president of the USCCB in 2022, Broglio has been at odds with President Joe Biden, a self-described Catholic, over his adamant abortion advocacy. Early last year, in his first public statement addressing Biden, Broglio refuted the president’s claim that some Catholic bishops approve of taxpayer funding for abortions. “The Catholic bishops of the United States are united in our commitment to life and will continue to work as one body in Christ to make abortion unthinkable,” Broglio declared. “Taxpayer funding of abortion would force people of good conscience to participate in this grave evil against their will. It would contradict our right to live in accord with the tenets of our faith. Our nation is better than that.”

The Catholic Church has long condemned abortion as a “moral evil,” asserting that “abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law…” The Catholic Church imposes its most stringent penalty — excommunication: being cut off from the Church and barred from the sacraments — upon those who procure, commit, or even endorse abortions. Pro-abortion politicians like former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), both of whom claim to be Catholic, have been ordered by their local bishops not to receive Holy Communion until they publicly repent of their very public abortion advocacy. The USCCB even drafted a document in 2021 to bar Biden from receiving Holy Communion due to his prominent abortion promotion.

The VA’s newly-cemented abortion rule is just the latest example of Biden’s pro-abortion agenda. Just this year, Biden’s Justice Department has targeted pro-lifers and his Food and Drug Administration has allowed the practically-unrestricted sale of dangerous abortion drugs in retail pharmacies; the president has commemorated the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, and, during Thursday night’s State of the Union address, Biden pledged to not only enshrine but expand abortion in federal law, doing away with hundreds of pro-life laws and ushering in an abortion regime more brutal than even Roe allowed.

S.A. McCarthy serves as a news writer at The Washington Stand.