In today’s News:
LCMS schools face the new year
Jan. 24–30 — offers LCMS schools a yearly opportunity to reflect on and share the blessings of Christian education. This year, amid many challenges, they will have many blessings to celebrate. Currently, the LCMS has 1,914 schools across the nation, serving more than 190,000 students. In the past year, these schools have had to make unexpected adjustments in order to continue their mission and ministry. A testament to their hard work is that enrollment trends are up in many Lutheran schools following the onset of the pandemic. The 2021 NLSW theme is “Sent To Serve,” based on Matt. 20:28: “The son of man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Texas cuts off Planned Parenthood
Starting in February, the state of Texas will no longer be required to award Medicaid funds to Planned Parenthood, thanks to a November decision by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. After the abortion giant requested a six-month grace period for patients to find new providers while still receiving care, the court denied this request but allowed for a 30-day grace period ending Feb. 3. The 5th Circuit and Texas attorney general based this decision in part on Planned Parenthood’s involvement in the illegal trafficking of aborted baby body parts that came to light in 2015. In 2013, Planned Parenthood was fined $1.4 million for fraudulently over-billing the Texas state Medicaid program, as reported by Live Action News.
Abortions increase in Pennsylvania
A new report from the Pennsylvania Department of Health reveals that that in 2019, there were 654 more abortions in the state than in 2018. This marks the second year in a row that the state saw an increase in abortions, and the first time since 2001 that there was an increase in two consecutive years. Altogether, more than 31,000 abortions were committed in the state in 2019, which means that an average of 85 babies died by abortion each day. The majority of those abortions were committed on women ages 25 to 29, and nearly 88 percent of the women were reported as unmarried. More than 47 percent of the abortions were committed on women who already had at least one prior abortion. The report also reveals that 44 percent of abortions were committed on black women, though nationwide, the black community comprises just 12 percent of the population. Additionally, there was an alarming increase in reported abortion complications. The state recorded 285 abortion complications for 2019, significantly higher than the 179 injuries documented in 2018.
U.S. reforms child welfare providers regulations
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ final rule issued last week that eliminates a federal regulation from the previous administration that forced child welfare providers to abandon their deeply held religious beliefs to continue receiving federal funding to serve children in need. Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys represent Catholic Charities West Michigan and New Hope Family Services in New York, both adoption and foster care providers, in federal lawsuits against state officials.