A WordPress Blog-THE CHURCH MILITANT Ephesians 5:11-"And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them". This Christian News Blog maintains a one stop resource of current news and reports of its own related to church, moral, spiritual, and related political issues, plus articles, and postings from other online discernment ministries, and media which share the aims to obey the biblical commands to shed light on and refute error, heresy, apostasy, cults, and spiritual abuse. ALL CONTENT FROM HTTPS://RATHEREXPOSETHEM.BLOGSPOT.COM MOVED TO THIS NEW BLOG, MAY 2020
republished below in full unedited for informational, educational and research
WASHINGTON —The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued a notice of violation to the State of California, advising that it is breaking federal law by requiring all insurance plans to provide coverage for abortion — a mandate that had resulted in churches and other religious organizations lodging a complaint with HHS.
“[The Office of Civil Rights] OCR is issuing a Notice of Violation to the state of California, formally notifying California that it cannot impose universal abortion coverage mandates on health insurance plans and issuers in violation of federal conscience laws,” HHS said in a press release on Friday.
“California has deprived over 28,000 people of plans that did not cover elective abortion, but now must cover abortion due to California’s mandate.”
As previously reported, the California Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) issued a letter in August 2014 requiring all insurance companies in the state to cover abortions, seemingly leaving no way for religious organizations — including churches — to opt out or choose an alternative plan.
“Abortion is a basic health care service,” Director Michelle Rouillard wrote to the seven insurance companies that refused to offer coverage. “All health plans must treat maternity services and legal abortion neutrally.”
She asserted that abortion must be covered because the “California Constitution prohibits health plans from discriminating against women who choose to terminate a pregnancy,” and also cited a 1975 law surrounding “medically necessary” health care.
The directive is believed to be a result of a decision made in 2014 by two Roman Catholic/Jesuit universities in the state — Santa Clara University and Loyola Marymount University — to no longer pay for abortions, but that employees could buy coverage through a third party. Some faculty members objected to the announcement and called upon Gov. Jerry Brown to intervene.
The Life Legal Defense Foundation (LLDF) and Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) soon filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services after the DMHC refused to change its decision following written correspondence between the groups.
They then filed a second complaint with the federal government on behalf of seven churches, one of which operates a Christian school, to again assert that the mandate violates the rights of faith-based employers. It cited the federal Weldon Amendment, which mandates that a state be forfeited of certain government funds if it “subjects any … health care entity to discrimination” because the entity “does not provide, pay for, provide coverage of, or refer for abortions.”
Skyline Church in La Mesa, Foothill Church and Foothill Christian School in Glendora, Alpine Christian Fellowship in El Cajon, The Shepherd of the Hills Church in Porter Ranch, City View Church in San Diego, Faith Baptist Church in Santa Barbara, and Calvary Chapel Chino Hills in Chino were all represented in the complaint.
On Friday, HHS outlined that its Office of Civil Rights conducted an investigation in light of the Skyline complaint, as well as one filed by the Roman Catholic charity Missionary Guadalupanas of the Holy Spirit.
Agreeing with the complainants, it “determined that California violated the Weldon Amendment by mandating that California health care plan issuers cover elective abortion in each plan product, and continues to violate federal law by continuing to require objecting health care entities protected by the Weldon Amendment to cover elective abortion.”
California has 30 days to advise whether or not it will correct its actions or continue to enforce the coverage requirement. If the State refuses to comply, it could lose federal funding, or as HHS put it, the matter “may ultimately result in limitations on continued receipt of certain HHS funds.”
“No one in America should be forced to pay for or cover other people’s abortions,” Roger Severino, director of OCR, said in a statement. “We are putting California on notice that it must stop forcing people of good will to subsidize the taking of human life, not only because it’s the moral thing to do, but because it’s the law.”
ADF applauded the move on Friday, similarly remarking, “No one should force a church or any other employer to participate in funding abortion. For years, California’s Department of Managed Health Care has demonstrated hostility to churches by forcing them to pay for elective abortions. The agency has unconstitutionally targeted religious organizations, repeatedly collaborated with pro-abortion advocates, and failed to follow the appropriate administrative procedures to institute its unprecedented mandate.”
As previously reported, the State of California was the center of a 2018 Supreme Court case after it required pro-life pregnancy resource centers to post information about how residents can take part in government programs that would allow them to obtain an abortion at little or no cost.
The court ruled 5-4 in favor of the pregnancy centers, finding the requirement to be unconstitutional forced speech.
“It does appear that viewpoint discrimination is inherent in the design and structure of this Act. This law is a paradigmatic example of the serious threat presented when government seeks to impose its own message in the place of individual speech, thought, and expression,” wrote Justice Anthony Kennedy.
“For here the State requires primarily pro-life pregnancy centers to promote the State’s own preferred message advertising abortions. This compels individuals to contradict their most deeply held beliefs, beliefs grounded in basic philosophical, ethical, or religious precepts, or all of these. … Governments must not be allowed to force persons to express a message contrary to their deepest convictions. Freedom of speech secures freedom of thought and belief. This law imperils those liberties.”
"On January 24th, the day of the 47th annual March for Life in Washington, D.C., remembering the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion in the U.S. and which has a death toll of over 60 million preborn children, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar announced that the HHS Office for Civil Rights has issued a violation to the state of California for its abortion coverage mandate.
OCR says California violated the federal Weldon Amendment, engaging in “unlawful discrimination” in forcing health plan issuers to cover abortion in all insurance plans in the state, beginning in 2014. Two complaints were filed against the mandate, by two religious organizations — Missionary Guadalupanas of the Holy Spirit and Skyline Wesleyan Church.
The press release also notes that if California has not responded with compliance after 30 days, “OCR will forward the Notice of Violation and the evidence supporting OCR’s findings in this matter to the HHS funding components from which California receives funding for appropriate action under applicable grants and contracts regulations. This action may ultimately result in limitations on continued receipt of certain HHS funds.”"
republished below in full unedited for informational, educational and research
The eldest son of US President Donald Trump, Donald Trump Jr., signaled support for the free speech rights of Infowars reporter Owen Shroyer after he was arrested at the US Capitol while conducting a silent protest.
On Friday, Trump Jr. liked a tweet from Newsmax anchor John Cardillo, who took issue with the fact that Shroyer was approached and arrested by Capitol police, despite other anti-Trump protesters being allowed to protest in the exact same location.
“The ‘Impeach Trump’ protesters, a lot of them, stood in the same spot and were left alone. Multiple pics and videos prove that,” Cardillo wrote in a tweet sent out to his 190.7K followers.
The ‘Impeach Trump’ protesters, a lot of them, stood in the same spot and were left alone. Multiple pics and videos prove that.
Who ordered the Capitol PD to surround one pro-Trump guy who was peacefully protesting?
The United Kingdom is now officially set to leave the European Union on January 31 at 23:00 GMT. With the announcement of Royal Assent on Thursday, the withdrawal agreement championed by Prime Minister Boris Johnson officially became law.
Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans had the honor of making the announcement to a nearly empty House of Commons: “I have to announce in the House in accordance with the Royal Assent Act 1967 that her majesty has signified her Royal Assent to the following act: European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020.”
The announcement is the final finishing nail in a more than three-and-a-half-year political drama in the U.K. over the citizens’ decision to leave the European Union in a 2016 referendum. The turmoil since that vote has included the resignation of two prime ministers, vicious negotiations over a “withdrawal deal” that was never truly needed, and a tumultuous snap general election in December of 2019 that became a de facto re-vote on the original referendum. That paradigm-shifting election was a resounding victory for Brexit-backing Tories.
Prime Minister Johnson offered only a brief statement, saying, “At times it felt like we would never cross the Brexit finish line, but we’ve done it.”
“Now we can put the rancor and division of the past three years behind us and focus on delivering a bright exciting future — with better hospitals and schools, safer streets and opportunity spread to every corner of our country.”
It wouldn’t have been about Brexit without some last-ditch attempts to change the Withdrawal Agreement. On Wednesday, the House of Lords offered several amendments on citizen’s rights, the power of British courts to deviate from EU law and the consent of the UK’s devolved administrations, all of which were rejected by the House of Commons.
The House of Commons also rejected a proposal that would have required Johnson’s government to negotiate an agreement with the EU to allow unaccompanied children who have claimed asylum in a different country but have a relative in the UK to join that relative. According to the agreement as signed, the government must still address the issue but only by a statement within the next two months — not a negotiation.
Once January 31 finally comes, the UK will enter into an 11-month transition period ending on December 31, 2020 during which the UK and the EU will negotiate their new relationship. During the transition period, the UK will remain in the customs union and follow the single-market rules. Free movement of citizens between the UK and Europe will continue as well.
But thanks to Johnson and the Conservative-led House of Commons, that transition period may no longer be extended due to a legal clause added to the Withdrawal Agreement in December that nixes any extensions.
Any issues not fully worked out and signed by both parties by the end of 2020 — such as fishing rights, consumer and environmental standards and climate-change law — will be conducted on World Trade Organization’s terms. While not a perfect situation by any means, it’s still infinitely better than being tied to the European Union.
There are still a few t’s to cross and some i’s to dot. The EU Parliament must debate and pass the agreement on January 29 — this is seen as simply a formality. Charles Michel, the Belgian politician who serves at the president of the European Council, must sign the agreement; and so must Johnson.
But barring something crazy like a Fort Sumter-like attack on Great Britain emanating from the EU, Great Britain will again be free to determine its own fate, a sovereign nation once again.
A memo obtained by the Daily Mail about plans for the upcoming Brexit Day sums things up quite well. Brexit Day will represent “the start of a new chapter in the history of our country, in which we come together and move forward united, unleashing the enormous potential of the British people.”
republished below in full unedited for informational, educational and research
January 23, 2020
WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) took action against four international petrochemical and petroleum companies that have collectively transferred the equivalent of hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of exports from the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), an entity instrumental in Iran’s petroleum and petrochemical industries, which helps to finance Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF) and its terrorist proxies. Iran’s petroleum and petrochemical industries are major sources of revenue for the Iranian regime and funds its malign activities throughout the Middle East. The entities targeted today facilitate Iran’s petrochemical and petroleum exports in contravention of U.S. economic sanctions.
“Iran’s petrochemical and petroleum sectors are primary sources of funding for the Iranian regime’s global terrorist activities and enable its persistent use of violence against its own people,” said Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin.
Today’s action follows on the heels of similar actions that have targeted key sources of funding for Iranian regional adventurism, including a recent action targeting the Iranian metals sector. Also, in June 2019, OFAC designated Iran’s largest petrochemical holding group, Persian Gulf Petrochemical Industries Company (PGPIC), for providing financial support to U.S.-designated Khatam al-Anbya Construction Headquarters, the engineering conglomerate of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). In addition to PGPIC, OFAC designated PGPIC’s vast network of 39 subsidiary petrochemical companies and foreign-based sales agents.
Today’s action targets Triliance Petrochemical Co. Ltd. (Triliance), a Hong Kong-based broker with branches in Iran, United Arab Emirates, China, and Germany.
In 2019, Triliance ordered the transfer of the equivalent of millions of dollars to NIOC as payment for Iranian petrochemicals, crude oil, and petroleum products shipped to the United Arab Emirates and China after the expiration of any applicable significant reduction exceptions. In facilitating these shipments, Triliance worked to conceal the Iranian origin of these products. Triliance has also facilitated the sale of millions of dollars’ worth of petroleum products involving Naftiran Intertrade Company, a subsidiary of NIOC, to companies in China.
Additionally, Triliance Kish Petrochemical Company, which is the Iran-based branch of Triliance, recently changed its name and operates as Tiba Parsian Kish Petrochemical.
Similarly, in 2019, Hong Kong-based Sage Energy HK Limited (Sage Energy) and Shanghai-based Peakview Industry Co. Limited (Peakview) each ordered the transfer of the equivalent of millions of dollars to NIOC for exports after the expiration of any applicable significant reduction exceptions.
In 2019, Dubai-based Beneathco DMCC also ordered the transfer of the equivalent of several million dollars to NIOC. In late 2018, Beneathco DMCC offered to assist NIOC in hiding the origin of Iranian products destined for the United Arab Emirates.
Triliance, Sage Energy, Peakview, and Beneathco DMCC are all designated pursuant to E.O 13846 for on or after November 5, 2018, having materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services in support of, NIOC, a person included on the List of Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to E.O. 13599.
Concurrently with the U.S. Department of Treasury’s designations, the U.S. Department of State designated several companies and senior executives pursuant to E.O. 13846 in connection with significant transactions for the transport of petrochemical products from Iran, on or after November 5, 2018.
All property and interests in property of these persons designated today subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked, and U.S persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with them. In addition, foreign financial institutions that knowingly facilitate significant transactions for, or persons that provide material or certain other support to, the persons designated today risk exposure to sanctions that could sever their access to the U.S. financial system or block their property and interests in property under U.S. jurisdiction.
This shocking footage comes amid surging demand for such masks globally.
“Search engine requests for ‘virus mask’ have exploded as panic begins to set in regarding the deadly coronavirus, which experts have warned could lead to a global pandemic,” reports Steve Watson. “The searches for ‘virus mask’ are most prevalent in Singapore, China, Macao, Hong Kong, and the Philippines.”