Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby Ruling Impacts Private Catholic Businesses

Tuesday, July 1st 2014, 7:11 pm
By: News 9

The aftermath of Hobby Lobby's victory at the Supreme Court continues to be felt. The court's ruling also has an impact on private businesses owned by Catholics, who oppose all forms of contraception.

Several cases in the 10th circuit, awaited yesterday's 5-4 decision in favor of Hobby Lobby. The Oklahoma-based company does not have to provide four of the 20 methods of contraceptives.

The court followed that decision by sending other cases back to the lower courts on Tuesday.

Also, for-profit businesses religiously against contraceptives all together, do not have to provide any methods. But that still doesn't clear the air for many people in Oklahoma.

The backlash continues in response to the Supreme Court ruling.

"They've taken it upon themselves to determine what decisions families make, that's just wrong and its plain wrong," said Dr. Bruce Prescott with the Oklahoma Faith Network.

The fight for religious exemption is not over for several organizations and universities.

"Anyone who holds a deep faith commitment has the right to live that out in their experience and in their business," said Dr. Anthony Jordan, Executive Director of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma.

Dr. Jordan said his association is exempt from the Obamacare contraceptive mandate because the government recognizes it as a church due to its affiliation with over 1,800 churches in the state.

However, the university that BGCO is closely affiliated with, Oklahoma Baptist University, sued the Department of Health and Human Services. OBU and three other private Christian based Oklahoma universities want the same contraceptive mandate exemption as Hobby Lobby.

Currently, the government does not recognize these universities for their religious foundations.

"The key issue is that we of faith, of any faith, has the right to live in that faith in the public arena, particularly and it relates to the right of life," said Dr. Jordan.

Currently the district courts have ruled in favor of the schools, which the Supreme Court has left in place.

The Catholic Benefits Association, which has over 450 for-profit and ministry members, is also seeking religious exemption.

The district court has ruled in favor of the association.