A New Catechesis
Confusion in our society about human nature is abounding. Amid this confusion, Bishop Michael Burbidge of the Diocese of Arlington has issued a new catechesis on the human person. He is one of several bishops who have recently helped to clarify the nature of biological sex in the face of contradictory views of gender.

You can find that and much more on Gender Theory in our Resources.
Made for Love Goes Back to the Movies!
The latest episode of the podcast continues our look at When Harry Met Sally, about which we had a surprising amount to say! Also surprising is how much of it related to the book we recently completed: Men, Women, and the Mystery of Love. Find previous episodes here, and share it with your friends!
Civilize It 2021
As a nation, including many in the Church, we are polarized and divided. But as Pope Francis writes in Fratelli Tutti, we can seek “a better kind of politics, one truly at the service of the common good” (no. 154). We can see ourselves as members of one family. We can seek the truth together. We can jointly come up with creative solutions to the problems that face our world. Civilize It: A Better Kind of Politics is a response to Pope Francis’ invitation.

If you’re interested in loving your neighbors through open engagement, join us to model this “better kind of politics.”
We Can Stop the "Equality Act"!
The Senate has yet to vote on the misnamed Equality Act, which the USCCB continues to oppose. By seeking to insert "sexual orientation" and "gender identity" into civil rights laws, it would discriminate against people of faith and impose gender theory in schools, workplaces, charities, shelters, hospitals, doctors' offices, and more. Its provisions could also be construed to create an abortion mandate. For a deeper look at some of the issues with gender theory, check out our podcast at the links above!

Our Policy Advisor, Robert Vega, participated in a webinar detailing the potential harms of the bill, along with a podcast for the USCCB's religious liberty office. They also hosted another podcast on gender theory with guests Margaret Harper McCarthy and Michael Hanby.

Please contact your U.S. senator to stop this bill from becoming law! Check out this in-depth briefing: The Equality Act and What It Means for Catholics and visit usccb.org/equality-act to learn more.
A Year of St. Joseph
Pope Francis has proclaimed in his Apostolic Letter Patris Corde a special “Year of St. Joseph,” a wonderful opportunity to increase our love for St. Joseph, patron of both the Universal Church and of all families.

The USCCB has compiled a hub of resources, catechetical materials, and prayers/devotions to assist in the ongoing celebration of this special year, and our podcast just covered it in its newest episode.
Legal/Policy Updates
Religious Freedom - Catholic health care providers and employers won another major victory for religious liberty against the "Obamacare" mandate to provide and cover "gender transition" procedures, with a federal court issuing an injunction in Franciscan Alliance v. Becerra on August 9th. Then on August 11th, Catholic schools in Indianapolis won one of their cases involving teachers and counselors in same-sex relationships, with Lynn Starkey's lawsuit being dismissed under the school's right to decide who is a minister of the faith. Both cases will likely be appealed. An appeal was filed with the Supreme Court on August 2nd by Union Gospel Mission in Seattle, as the state is trying to force the religious homeless center to employ personnel in same-sex relationships.

Gender Ideology in Schools - On August 3rd, a court dismissed a Christian group's lawsuit against Virginia's law requiring public schools to adopt pro-"transgender" policies. In Illinois, Governor Pritzker signed bills on August 20th that impose a sex education curriculum that critics say will push promiscuity, same-sex relationships, and gender theory on children as young as kindergarten. On August 23rd, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals vacated a recent panel ruling that had required a Florida school district to admit a "transgender" girl to the boys' restroom, and agreed to rehear the case en banc. Also this past month, the Utah State Board of Education told teachers to not ask students' preferred pronouns or gender identity. At the national level, meanwhile, Biden Administration officials in the Departments of Justice, Health & Human Services, and Education put out a "Back to School" video in support of "transgender" students.

Protecting Children Outside of School - On August 11th, the Texas Dept. of Family and Protective Services issued a letter, at the governor's request, declaring genital surgery on minors for the purposes of attempting to change sex to be child abuse.

Bathroom Battles Continue - On August 13th, an Illinois appellate court ruled against Hobby Lobby's policy of aligning restroom access with biological sex.

Gender Ideology in Government Data - The governor of New Mexico issued an executive order on August 16th to require collection of the public's "sexual orientation" and "gender identity" data across agencies' work.

Prisons - An Illinois federal judge ordered prisons to take more steps to provide "transgender" inmates with their preferred medical interventions and housing arrangements on August 9th.

Local Governments - "LGBT" political priorities continue to roll across the country. On August 2nd, Charleston, WV, joined a growing number of cities that have passed a potentially overbroad ban on what it deems "conversion therapy." Charlotte, NC, passed a "sexual orientation" and "gender identity" nondiscrimination ordinance on August 9th.

International - In August, Scotland issued gender-related guidance to schools that, among other things, could lead to 4-year-olds being socially transitioned without parental consent. A UK regulator is also seeking to deny a Jewish school the ability to expand because it does not follow the government's "LGBT"-related guidelines. And a co-chair of London's Violence Against Women and Girls board was allegedly removed for expressing concerns about "transgender" males in women's shelters. In the Czech Republic, it was reported this past month that the legislature narrowly defeated a bill to effectively allow same-sex couples to be foster parents. And on August 10th, Guyana decriminalized cross-dressing.