Lansing Update
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CAN is an outreach of the Michigan Catholic Conference, the official public policy voice of the Catholic Church in Michigan
July 20, 2018

  In This Update:  
  • USCCB Launches National Pro-Life Prayer Effort
  • ACTION NEEDED! Show Support for the "Protect Life Rule"
  • ACTION NEEDED AT THE FEDERAL LEVEL! Protect Vulnerable Girls' Access to Education
  • The Word from Lansing: State Budget Successes and the Importance of Engagement
  • 2018 Election Year Guidelines for Catholic Organizations 
  USCCB Launches National Pro-Life Prayer Effort  
On June 27, 2018, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy announced he would retire from the Court by July 31. The announcement-and the opportunity for a new justice to take a seat on the bench-has brought forward much discussion about the future of Roe v. Wade, the decision that allowed for legalized abortion across the United States. While the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) does not support or oppose the confirmation of any presidential nominee, the upcoming Supreme Court vacancy provides an opportunity to focus on prayer and education. The U.S. bishops are urging all people of goodwill to pray that the change in the Court will move the United States closer to the full legal protection and welcoming of every human life. This nationwide prayer campaign will be held each Friday, from August 3 to September 28, 2018 and will also highlight truths about how Roe v. Wade is a bad law and poor public policy. More resources for the campaign, including a novena for the legal protection of human life, can be found at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishop's website. To sign up to receive prayer intentions and reminders by email, click here.
  ACTION NEEDED! Show Support for the "Protect Life Rule"  
In June, the Trump Administration announced a proposed rule change to separate abortion from the Title X family planning program, which provides low-income women with pre-pregnancy services. The program's original design includes a specific prohibition on abortion-related activities. Recent interpretations of the program have required grantees to refer for abortion, thus both overtly excluding health centers who object to such referrals from applying for Title X grants and also ensuring a direct link between family planning services and the promotion of abortion. The Administration has opened a 60-day comment period ending on July 31, 2018 and is accepting comments on the newly proposed rule. Send comments now to the Department of Health and Human Services to support the proposed rule and keep abortion-related activities separate from the Title X family planning program.
  ACTION NEEDED AT THE FEDERAL LEVEL! Protect Vulnerable Girls' Access to Education  
The Protecting Girls' Access to Education in Vulnerable Settings Act (S. 1580), sponsored by U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Bob Menendez (D-NJ), is currently making its way through the U.S. Senate and needs help to get over the finish line! Children who are refugees have witnessed violence and lost homes or loved ones. Most have been out of school for years. Education may seem minor during war and conflict, but it is absolutely essential to building hope for the future and healing trauma. Providing opportunities for education is also one way to reduce children's risk of being trafficked. Call on your Senators to co-sponsor this important piece of legislation today! It only takes a few minutes to send a message, but your voice helps ensure that refugee children, especially girls displaced by conflicts overseas, have access to education. Thank you in advance for your action. (Photo from Catholic Relief Services)
  The Word from Lansing: State Budget Successes and the Importance of Engagement  
In June, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed two measures into law that provide for the state's October 2018-September 2019 budget. Public Acts 207 and 266 of 2018 emerged from a five-month process, with input from elected officials on both sides of the aisle, advocacy groups, the various state departments, and citizens. The Word from Lansing column for July highlights Michigan Catholic Conference's advocacy during the budget process, as well as several key budget items that were included in the final version and were supported by MCC.
  2018 Election Year Guidelines for Catholic Organizations  
Michiganders have two elections coming up: the August 7 Primary Election and the November 6 General Election. In preparation for these events, and to facilitate appropriate participation in political and electoral activities, Michigan Catholic Conference offers guidelines for Catholic parishes, schools, and other 501(c)(3) organizations.

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Michigan Catholic Conference, 510 South Capitol Avenue, Lansing, Michigan 48933 Michigan Catholic Conference: The Official Public Policy Voice of the Catholic Church in Michigan Phone: (517) 372-9310, Fax: (517) 372-3940,