Washington State Catholic Conference Newsletter
  April 5, 2022  
  2022 State Legislative Session Concludes  
  Update On WSCC Priorities  

The state legislative session concluded last month, and April 2 was the deadline for Governor Inslee to take action on bills passed by the legislature.  Thank you for your advocacy throughout the session!  Click below for details on bills the WSCC worked on during the 2022 session: 

Bills the WSCC took a position on that have been signed into law

A complete list of bills worked on by the WSCC 

Detailed descriptions of WSCC priority bills

  Welcome Bishop-elect Schuster  

The WSCC congratulates Bishop-elect Frank Schuster on his appointment as the new auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese of Seattle!  Bishop-elect Schuster will join the bishops of Washington state on the WSCC's executive board.  Read more about Bishop-elect Schuster and his appointment here.

  From The US Conference Of Catholic Bishops (USCCB)  
  Anticipating Dobbs, Standing With Moms In Need  

In December the Supreme Court heard oral arguments on Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health, and a decision is expected in June. The Supreme Court will have the opportunity to overturn Roe v. Wade and allow states to determine their own laws on abortion and protecting the unborn.  Click here for additional background on the case.  Prayer resources for individual and parish ministry use may be accessed at PrayforDobbs.com

In anticipation of the Dobbs decision, the US Conference of Catholic Bishops issued this statement affirming the Church's commitment to serving vulnerable populations, including mothers and children in need. The bishops urge dioceses, parishes, and Catholic agencies and institutions to redouble efforts to accompany women and couples facing unexpected or difficult pregnancies. Be sure to read the statement for more on how the Church and the faithful are called to serve women and families.

In Washington we can particularly heed this call to serve by participating in and contributing to the Pregnancy and Parent Support Program, or PREPARES.  This program provides meaningful, local, sustainable support to mothers, fathers, and families as they nurture their children.  As we await the Dobbs decision, now is the time to join or start this ministry in your parish. 

If Roe is overturned, abortion will remain legal in Washington due to state law.  Abortion was legalized in Washington in 1970, prior to the Roe decision.  Additionally, HB 1851, a bill affirming access to abortion, was passed into law last month.  The new law also expanded who may perform abortions.  A physician is no longer necessary to perform an abortion; physician assistants, nurse practitioners, and other health care providers will now be authorized to perform the procedure.  The WSCC opposed HB 1851.

  USCCB Weighs In On SCOTUS Ruling And The Death Penalty  

Last month the Supreme Court ruled in favor of John Ramirez, who requested that his pastor be permitted to lay hands on him and pray aloud during his execution in Texas. This request was originally denied by the Texas prison system.  In this statement, the USCCB affirms the Supreme Court decision, which upholds religious liberty.  At the same time, the bishops condemn state-sanctioned executions, which undermine the dignity of human life.  The USCCB and the Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops submitted this amicus brief in support of John Ramirez.  The Texas Catholic Conference also issued this statement.  Visit Catholic Mobilizing Network for more information on opposing the death penalty.

  Ethical Research And Respecting Life  

One way that Catholics can promote our value of respecting life is by advocating for ethical research.  For example, some medical and pharmaceutical researchers use cell lines originally derived from an abortion.  However, alternatives to abortion-tainted cell lines do exist and can be employed.  The USCCB encourages the faithful to use these sample letters and write pharmaceutical companies that use abortion-derived cell lines.  Urge them to use other cell sources in their work.  Additional information on promoting ethical research may be found on the USCCB website.

  Pope Francis Consecrates Russia And Ukraine To The Immaculate Heart of Mary  

Photo credit: CNS photo/Paul Haring

Last month Pope Francis consecrated Russia and Ukraine to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. US bishops throughout the nation joined Pope Francis in the consecration prayer. The consecration prayer may be accessed here, and additional coverage of this event may be found here.

See the USCCB's Justice For Immigrants resource page and Catholic Relief Services to learn more about the invasion into Ukraine, how the Catholic Church is responding, and how you can help.

  Child Abuse Prevention Month  

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month.  A prayer for healing for victims of abuse may be found here, and USCCB resources may be accessed here.

  Upcoming Events  
  Important Dates  

April            Child Abuse Prevention Month

April 10       Palm Sunday, beginning of Holy Week

April 17       Easter Sunday

April 20       Earth Day


WSCC Staff

We invite you to contact us at any time.

Mario Villanueva, Executive Director



Adrienne Corpuz Joyce, Director of Policy & Communications      



Tracey Wilson Yackley, Operations Manager 



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