Iowa Newsletter

To: Iowa Catholic Conference Legislative Network
First, I’d like to welcome the new subscribers to our Iowa Catholic Conference Legislative Network. This fall I’ve had the opportunity to speak in several parishes around the state and encourage those in attendance to sign up for our legislative alerts. I hope you find them useful.
ELECTION DAY AND FAITHFUL CITIZENSHIP FOR IOWA CATHOLICS
During these last days before an election I have had many contacts from people who are looking for more information before they vote. One of the places I always direct them toward is the “Faithful Citizenship for Iowa Catholics” flier on our website at www.iowacatholicconference.org. I urge you to review it again.
I’ve posted on our website an opinion piece I wrote for the Des Moines Register in support of a constitutional convention. 
Let’s get out and vote on Nov. 2nd! If you vote – the choice is yours. If you don’t vote – the choice is theirs.
RECAP OF IOWA INSTITUTE FOR SOCIAL ACTION
Many thanks to those who attended the 2011 Iowa Institute for Social Action earlier this month. For a few photos of the event, check out the “Iowa Institute for Social Action” group page on Facebook.
TELEMED ABORTION
Last Friday I attended the Iowa Board of Medicine’s public hearing on telemedicine and the issue of “telemed” abortions. These abortions are conducted by video conference, where the woman is on one end of the connection and the doctor on the other. The doctor dispenses two abortion pills by pushing a button and a drawer opens on the other end. The woman takes one pill right away and one later. The woman generally delivers a dead baby later at home.
The Board of Medicine is reviewing its policies on telemedicine. It seems unlikely that the board will take any action soon to address concerns about standards of care. For our part, the Iowa Catholic Conference opposes all abortions, no matter the method. However, if these abortions are to take place, the safety and informed consent of the women involved should be among the chief concerns.
REVIEW OFFERS ROAD MAP FOR RENEWAL OF CCHD
A new document affirms the Catholic Campaign for Human Development’s Catholic foundations and priority for the poor. “The Review and Renewal of CCHD” also responds to concerns about CCHD funding policies and makes 10 commitments to strengthen CCHD as a faithful and effective expression of Catholic teaching and the Gospel mandate to defend the lives and dignity of those who are poor in our nation.
Established in 1969, CCHD provides self-help grants to groups of low-income people who are working to overcome poverty by addressing its root causes in their own lives and communities. The executive summary and full report, along with additional material, are now available online at: www.usccb.org/cchd/reviewandrenewal.shtml. Many dioceses will be taking up the CCHD collection in November.
NATIONAL SOCIAL MINISTRY GATHERING IS FEB.13-16
The 2011 theme for the annual Catholic Social Ministry Gathering in Washington, DC, is “Protecting Human Life & Dignity: Promoting a Just Economy”. You can join social ministry leaders and a score of Catholic national organizations as they explore common issues and concerns of global and domestic policy on human life, justice and peace that challenge our nation and world.
This annual event includes a visit to Capitol Hill to meet with your elected officials and discuss issues in the light of Catholic social teachings. For more information visit www.catholicsocialministrygathering.org.
AND FINALLY,
Very soon after the election we will follow-up with an announcement of the Iowa Catholic Conference 2011 legislative concerns. Thanks for being a part of our legislative network!
Tom Chapman
Executive Director
Iowa Catholic Conference