Why the Catholic Church is Concerned With Health Care

"For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.' "

Matthew 25:35-36

The right to life is not just a matter of life and death. It is a question of the right to enjoy life. To do so we must have our basic needs of food, drink, shelter, clothing, and even health care provided for.

The need for health care translates into the need for health insurance. Each year, the Diocese of Rochester has a public policy weekend to advocate for an issue of social justice through petitioning our government. The 2009 issue was "Access to Health Care."

As part of promoting this, the Catholic Charities Office of Chemung County held a session to speak about the need to provide insurance. I was one of the presenters. My presentation was the first of three. I discussed the Catholic understanding of the dignity of the person, rights, and how this leads to the Catholic call for health insurance for all.

Rather than trying to summarize all that here, here is the text and bibliography of my presentation. In the parish, I preached on how we are continue the healing ministry of Jesus and how, through this call, we are called to work for health insurance for all (Here is the text for the homily).

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