FIRST ON THE DAILY SIGNAL: A health sharing group is urging the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to address reports that Catholic hospitals are performing hormonal and surgical sex-change operations on young people.
Solidarity HealthShare’s June 14 letter asks the bishops “to vote to revise their Religious and Ethical Directives for Catholic Health Care to be [in] line with their doctrinal note released earlier this year, and to ask all Catholic health care providers to stop providing such life-altering medical procedures and drugs that directly counter Catholic Church teachings.”
This week, the USCCB will vote on whether to amend its directives on American Catholic health care institutions and mandate Catholic facilities not provide puberty blockers, hormones, or sex-change surgeries like an elective hysterectomy, vaginoplasty, phalloplasty, and more.
That letter references a report from the Lepanto Institute that the nation’s largest Catholic nonprofit health system “is acting directly against Catholic moral teaching in direct defiance of its Catholic identity” by performing sex-change operations intended to change an individual’s sex.
Many of these hospitals, according to the Lepanto Institute, follow the guidelines of the far-left pro-transgender Human Rights Campaign, such as having medical staff participate in “pronoun training.”
“These developments reveal how effective the present administration has been in forcing dangerous, secular mandates on health care providers—including the faith-based health care sector,” Solidarity HealthShare President Chris Faddis told the bishops. “We believe it is time for the Catholic health care sector to courageously oppose the far-left agenda being pushed by this administration and immediately stop offering these procedures and drugs.”
The health sharing group seeks to assist families who wish to obtain ethical medical care at a lowered cost and without violating their consciences.
In March 2023, the USCCB’s Committee on Doctrine released a doctrinal note on the “Moral Limits to Technological Manipulation of the Human Body” that emphasized: “Catholic health care services must not perform interventions, whether surgical or chemical, that aim to transform the sexual characteristics of a human body into those of the opposite sex or take part in the development of such procedures.”
That note came as critics around the world—including many doctors—voiced concerns about the effects of the increasing availability of irreversible hormonal and surgical procedures, even for children.
“They must employ all appropriate resources to mitigate the suffering of those who struggle with gender incongruence, but the means used must respect the fundamental order of the human body,” the bishops said at the time. “Only by using morally appropriate means do health care providers show full respect for the dignity of each human person.”
Faddis, the health share group’s president, pointed to this note from the bishops, emphasizing that Solidarity HealthShare hopes the bishops “support our position that people of faith should not be forced to support procedures that contradict their deeply held religious values and convictions.”
“Solidarity HealthShare remains committed to protecting our Members’ consciences by sharing only in ethical and life-affirming health care that prioritizes their unique health care needs while upholding their worth and dignity,” he added.
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