Health Regulations May Close Maine Amish Convert’s Meats Business
In January we learned the unusual story of Amish convert Matthew Secich and his premium meats and cheeses business, Charcuterie.
A former chef working in some of the country’s top restaurants, Secich had found his way to becoming a member of the Amish community at Unity, Maine.
This story which achieved a national reach got him a lot of attention. Now he has issues with health regulations which may cause his business to close, as reported by Maine’s NPR outlet:
John Bott is a spokesman for the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry. He says one point of concern is the ice house Secich uses instead of a refrigerator. Amish shun electricity.
“You have to keep meats at a required 41-degree-Fahrenheit temperature, which is relatively easy to obtain using modern technology, but with an ice house, it could present some challenges.”
Bott says other states with Amish businesses don’t allow ice houses, though the Department is open to Secich keeping his if they can determine it’s safe.
Additionally, there is a federal requirement to create something called a Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point plan, described as demanding “mountains of paperwork” by one non-Amish business owner.
According to the Bangor Daily News, Secich’s issues arose in part to due to the media coverage, which also provided a significant boost to his business. Secich doesn’t sound optimistic:
“We’re thinking about closing because it’s just too much,” he said Monday afternoon. “We want to stay open. But we’re so overwhelmed at the vast amount of paperwork … it’s so immense, I can’t keep up with it.”
“I don’t have time to be checking the temperature every two hours and logging it,” he said. “It makes me very tired. It’s too much. The last thing I’m ever going to do is serve somebody something I wouldn’t stand beside. The last thing I’d do is jeopardize anybody in any shape or form.”
Secich’s story has relevance as Amish businesses have faced issues over compliance with health regulations.
Perhaps the most infamous have been the conflicts over raw milk sales, notably that of PA Amish farmer Dan Allgyer. Other examples include Amish baked goods sellers facing challenges. One example was mentioned by Kevin Williams in a recent video on an Ohio Amish bakery.
Despite the obstacles, Bott is described as “confident the Department can come up with creative solutions to help Charcuterie in Unity keep selling sausage and other meats.”
Convert's Meat Business
Don’t tell me the government’s interference (for the good of ‘the people’ of course) caused another small Amish business to shut down?! Inconceivable!!!
The government is supposed to be BY the people and FOR the people, not driving businesses into the ground and destroying lives.
I agree with you Melissa
Which is why I started listening to the (former)expert on constitutional law (I guess the government did not like her reminding them they are BY & FOR the people. She is also a pastor’s wife Chris Ann Hall and lectures for free to any sending for her. Google her. Maybe the Amish could use some of her expert knowledge to help them.
The Amish should use the religous exemption status
The Amish need to use the religious exemption from laws. The Government needs to respect that this business is not breaking laws and use older fashioned styles that still work today. The Government needs to mind their business in this matter. People who buy products from these establishments do so knowing how things are made so the state needs to stay out.
The state has said that they are doing everything they can to help Matthew keep his business open. They stated they are working with him to get this resolved.
Amish food products
I hope I have done this right as I am 72 years old and not computer smart . Here goes. I go to Hickman county Tennessee every year when I visit Family. We always visit the Amish and I load up on everything I need and some things I just want. I trust the Amish as I would family for food and every thing else, When I was young and lived down there when we ran out of food and needed help they were always there for us as you see at times we ran out of food because we were very poor and , don’t laugh but if it moved or grew in the ground we ate it. What ever they would have to do I hope the Amish stick together and poo on the Government .. Betty McLevey BeeBeeDoll@aol.com
Thank you for such a lovely testimony, Betty. You might be interested in a website that is one of my favourites, http://www.amishliving.com
I wish every business had the quality that Amish businesses have. I would definitely trust his product and if I lived closer I would be there weekly to bring my family fresh products devoid of chemicals and grow hormones that mainstream meat and cheese have.
A possible solution
Perhaps Mr. Secich could partner with an English person. He could “sell” the foods to someone who could “rent” Charcuterie from him. That English person would have no moral qualms about using electric refrigeration in order to meet crazy health department codes. Of course, Mr. Secich would be in total control of his own business in order to maintain his quality.
I’m surprised that health departments around the world haven’t noticed that the human race existed for thousands of years without refrigeration.
It would be a shame for Matthew to lose his business over something like this. If I lived in his area and not across the country in AZ I would be happy to help with a partnership designed solely to allow him to continue this business.
Amish Food Businesses
I personally would feel safer eating food made by the Amish than the government. I wish I lived where I could shop for Amish foods especially their dairy products. The government interfering more than they already do is only going to take the livelihood from families.
Who regulates the regulators?
I find myself often saying “regulators regulate.” It’s pretty much the limit of their interest, and often of their intelligence. Yes, I understand the need for “food safety.” I’m also a big supporter of the Amish and the freedoms this country was supposedly founded on.
What’s particularly annoying about stories like this is that the government probably wouldn’t have even known about it if he hadn’t received attention from the media. That’s how safe many of the agencies are keeping the public they are theoretically created to protect.
I seem to recall a similar story in Maine a few years ago when a kid started a successful little business selling homemade cookies. The state shut him down. It’s only a matter of time before lemonade stands will require a license.
But we ought to be just as mad and frustrated with ourselves. I believe it was Abraham Lincoln who said something like “we get the kind of leaders we deserve.” Until we, as a society, start regulating the regulators nothing is going to change. The government is out of control because we have not only allowed it, we have encouraged it because we “like” being taken care of–or at least the illusion of it.
Why not solar?
I’m wondering whether he could get permission from his church district to have a conventional refrigerator powered by solar – or just to have solar powered cooling equipment in his ice house, which could be thermostat controlled, so that it would only activate if the temperature exceeded a given point.
The Amish are people of deep Christian faith, and that usually results in them being very trustworthy businesspeople. At the same time, bacteria don’t care one bit about a person’s faith and honesty. I agree with Cate above that perhaps he could take on an English business partner who could own electric refrigeration equipment he could make use of, or maybe his district would allow him to use bottled-gas appliances? I hate to see the Amish having conflict with the government, but I see a true benefit to the government maintaining health and safety regulations for businesses making food. It’s not an easy problem to solve.
This provides for interesting comments here. I agree with Emily about her concern for bacteria doing it’s thing in foods and being a health hazard, and for me, raw milk. No one should drink raw milk including small children when potentially deadly pathogens, such as E. coli 0157 H7, Campylobacter, Listeria, and Salmonella, when knowing that these clearly can cause so many health concerns. (I grew up on a farm milking cows by hand and drank raw milk for years. Now since I know that it is too risky, I would not do it again.) … I also agree with Cate above on his/her proposal. As a retired businessman, I find it sad also when too much bureaucratic paperwork becomes overwhelming. Yet the Amish should realize that they have a responsibility to follow health laws like anyone else. If they feel put upon, then they can petition for changes or vote for changes like the rest of us. For me with many Amish as ancestors, I believe that it’s time for all of us (including the Amish) to realize that not everything can be rationalized suggesting that all things happen for the good of all and then “spiritualize” an understanding that only God is in charge. All of us are also responsible to act.
You grew up drinking raw milk it was wholesome it never harmed you you enjoyed it but now you have been enlightened by our lovely government and have learned that it is not safe so you would never do it again.??? So what you’re telling me is you believe somebody’s word from the government over your own personal lifelong experience over drinking this whole some product ????
Raw milk, home grown meats, veggies, eggs, fruits n homemade, home fermented foods here- and healthy as horses- maybe you should not buy every bill of goods sold to you- especially from such an unreliable dealer!
Reply to Friend - Heather
Cato the Younger, the Roman statesman and stoic philosopher, was pleading a case when his adversary Lentulus spat in his face. After wiping off the spittle, Cato said, “I will swear to anyone, Lentulus, that people are wrong to say that you cannot use your mouth.”
Heather, to you I say, “Ah, if only you had known me better, you would have found greater fault still!”
Perhaps when one strives to use the scientific method with good sense while being a self-employed dairy nutritionist for 40 years, as I have, it can be easy to conclude that I’m not a novice in healthy milk matters after such valuable experience and observations. While visiting hundreds of “English” and Amish dairies in 5 states and Latin America, it’s incumbent on me to know what I’m doing and recommend clean, proper, and healthy production of milk. I have seen cows milked in numerous different situations and fully know from which farms I would not feel right providing it for children. I happen to try my best to be most considerate of the well-being of others and care less here if I’m castigated as one brainwashed.
Raw milk that I drank for years was milk drawn with my own hands and not from someone else’s. It is simply very useful to observe milking technique and milk handling once one gets milk from others besides your own.
Heather, perhaps I hit a raw nerve or chord with you, but I’m not one naive or brainwashed here. At the same time I truly wish you well with your raw milk, but please consider how important clean, bacteria-free milk is, especially for children and the more elderly like me. Cheers
Speaking of professions....
As a licensed food handler and also an administrator of serve safe classes and testing, I fully understand the importance of food safety and the correlation between sanitary conditions for milking, preparing and serving food … And the health and well-being of my guests is of the utmost importance to me. That being said being a general manager for a multimillion dollar Restaurant has allowed me to see that the safest food can come into the restaurant and be mishandled by the staff, guest to take it home and leave it in their car overnight and decide to take it for lunch the next day and eat it… I have seen cases where a proved interested suppliers dropped off products that were not fit to be delivered due to time and temperature abuse of seafood, other meats vegetables inferius perishables. My issue is not finding a solution to make sure that the food products are safe. My issue is the government selling the American public on the fact that pasteurize and homogenized milk is healthier then raw milk. That is simply not true. Raw milk milk and served under the correct conditions is 100% healthier and more wholesome. The same goes for Meats and cheeses that are not full of nitrates nitrates and other fancy-schmancy preservatives hormones etCetera. In this case the department of health does seem to be reaching out and helping to find solutions for this gentleman to be able to cool his meats and keep them safe using the method that he prefers. That is not typically the case in most municipalities. I too have been an inspector internally within a very large restaurant corporation and part of our job as an inspector is to educate and teach. I take that part of the job extremely seriously. I would hope that you two would take it extremely seriously before writing off wholesome foods that are much better than the toxic sludge that the government is putting their stamp of approval on.
World of Myth and Unreality
You say, “My issue is the government selling the American public on the fact that pasteurize and homogenized milk is healthier then raw milk. That is simply not true. Raw milk milk and served under the correct conditions is 100% healthier and more wholesome.” Really? You see, I’m not responsible for what you want and think but I do have a duty to present the case for healthy wholesome milk for small children and the most vulnerable.
One can have cattle on a thousand hills, be a licensed food handler, and a general manager for a multi-million dollar restaurant and have no scientific basis for one’s arguments. Raw milk is absolutely not “100% healthier and more wholesome” than pasteurized milk! To think otherwise is to be consumed with faddish, mythical, and pseudo-scientific unreality.
Heather, I ask you, “Have you ever seen cows with listeriosis (Circling Disease), Brucellosis, Tuberculosis, Staph and strepococcus infectious mastitis cows. I have many times and some of the milk from these cows can end up being marketed as raw milk. Pasteurizing is the only way to make milk safely drinkable. The Cornell University Food Science Department has compiled data indicating that pathogenic microorganisms are present in between 0.87% and 12.6% of raw milk samples. “Raw Milk Sales & Consumption – Position Statement”.
Volume 31, Issue 1, May 2013, Pages 251–262
Raw or heated cow milk consumption: Review of risks and benefits
Wendie L. Claeysa, , , Sabine Cardoena, Georges Daubeb, Jan De Blockc, Koen Dewettinckd, e,Katelijne Dierickd, f, Lieven De Zutterd, e, André Huyghebaertd, e, Hein Imberechtsd, f, Pierre Thiangeg, Yvan Vandenplash, Lieve Hermanc, d
In the context of the prevailing trend toward more natural products, there seems to be an increasing preference for raw milk consumption as raw milk is associated with several perceived health benefits that are believed to be destroyed upon heating. However, many human pathogens can be isolated from raw cow milk. The prevalence of foodborne pathogens in raw cow milk varies, but their presence has been demonstrated in many surveys and foodborne infections have been repeatedly reported for Campylobacter,Salmonella spp. and human pathogenic verocytotoxin-producing Escherichia coli. In industrialized countries, milk-borne and milk product-borne outbreaks represent 2–6% of the bacterial foodborne outbreaks.
The aim of this review is to present scientifically sound data regarding the risks and benefits related to the consumption of raw and heated cow milk. Both microbiological aspects (e.g., the prevalence of milk-borne pathogens, pathogen growth inhibition by antimicrobial systems and by lactic acid producing bacteria, probiotic bacteria, etc.) and nutritional or health aspects (nutritional value, immunity, allergies, lactose intolerance, diabetes, milk digestibility, etc.) are considered.
As such, it is demonstrated that consumption of raw milk poses a realistic health threat due to a possible contamination with human pathogens. It is therefore strongly recommended that milk should be heated before consumption. With the exception of an altered organoleptic profile, heating (in particularly ultra high temperature and similar treatments) will not substantially change the nutritional value of raw milk or other benefits associated with raw milk consumption.
Go science! Thank you for posting this. I was going to have to do it if you weren’t. But nowadays, people dig their heels in against science and empirical evidence. So it seems a fruitless exercise to try to educate those who don’t wish to be educated. But the fact remains, educated or not – science is science. And those who do not heed its lessons will eventually get sick.
Science is science and God is God
Science is science, but God is still God. God created the heavens and the earth and the animals and he also gave us brains and good bacteria and bad bacteria. I am conservative Mennonite and I do not believe in much of the publicly excepted scientific theories…. That does not make me uneducated, indeed; I am highly educated. But I also believe that our bodies were created long before the early 1900s when all of the “everything must be perfectly sanitary” movement began . I do except the fact that people who Dalistin cells and hand sanitizer and never expose themselves to any kind of beneficial bacteria or even small amounts of negative bacteria will get sick if they eat or drink the wrong thing. This is the culture that we have Developed in this country in modern times. Speaking of science you can also talk about all of the deadly modifications that have been made to foods whether it be GMO’s whether it be products by Monsanto that are poisoning our food and making us sick… But not to our stomach. We produce as much meat cheese fruits vegetables dairy and fragmented products on our homestead as we possibly can. I am constantly on guard for cross-contamination for clean food prep areas And utensils but I can guarantee you that we have eaten our share of good and bad bacteria and have not gotten sick why because our bodies in our family are strong and immune to the pathogen’s that play the average citizen today because they are so busy trying to live in a sanitary bubble – so back to the question of eating or drinking foods or beverages that contain illness causing bacteria yes I am sure that I have eaten some of those items but I am also positive that I have eaten some of those items in restaurants when they are trying to hold over old food to save a buck I have seen it with my own eyes. I have seen old food being washed and sold I’ve seen dirty preparation methods cross-contamination poor temperature handling in restaurants. So while I do believe that our bodies can become conditioned if we are not trying to be ultra sanitized I also believe that any food that is dirty is a menace – The desire is clean raw milk not dirty raw milk and that is possible. My lifestyle and my sufficiency on what the Lord provides for me is central to my religious beliefs I honestly could care less if the rest of the United States is drinking raw milk however I do prefer to have the right to drink it I do prefer to have the right to sell baked goods, meats, cheeses and other items without unnecessary laws that prevent any kind of whole unprocessed unpasteurized food being sold. Let it be up to the consumer. I know that that is a bold statement in these times of rampant lawsuits. But to say that I am uneducated because I do believe in Whole raw Foods better served with minimal preparation, preservatives is a bit condescending I can argue my point all day long and I could show science for my point all day long but I do need to go and do my chores and fix dinner but here is a little bit of reading material that you may find interesting .
Seeking Good Will to All
Heather, I’ve taken you seriously again by reading most of your PDF file on raw milk. Remember, there are 51 pages to try to read which is more than most people are willing to bother with. This reading goes to show that even doctors, lawyers, and groups have their agendas and will work strenuously to defend them for all kinds of reasons – one of them being emotional.
No one is treating you in a condescending way, Heather. Some of us disagree with you and have taken the liberty to point out our reasoning for why you might be mistaken in some of your concepts on some issues. I am not one to have suggested that you are brainwashed. Nor do I want to discriminate or be unkind and make a judgment based on your religious persuasion. (I consider myself an open-minded Mennonite able to consider nuance and should be considered progressive, liberal, moderate, and conservative depending on the issues and situation.)
If you are sincere, of which I have always assumed, it is imperative that anyone know what we are all talking about when we write of the use of the scientific method. Try here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method or https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Models_of_scientific_inquiry
For example, you say, “Speaking of science you can also talk about all of the deadly modifications that have been made to foods whether it be GMO’s, whether it be products by Monsanto that are poisoning our food and making us sick.” How do you arrive at such a strong declarative statement? If anyone would take a comprehensive study of these very emotional issues, one could easily find that they are very much more complex, much more nuanced, but more benign then one can imagine. By the way, please send me all of the GMO made foods that you would normally throw away and I would kindly receive them. Wouldn’t it be to our advantage if we all would compose ourselves, use our God-given minds to objectively study these issues in a comprehensive, scientific way, and finally realize that these emotionally-latent issues that consumes us who are fear stricken, can fully enjoy what many modern concepts can provide for us. Let’s be proactive and become free of those things that bind us, is my wish. With best regards to you, Heather.
Loved the comments from BeeBeeDoll@aol.com. Haven’t ever been to Hickman County, TN, but do go to Etheridge. So sad that my friend Danny U Gingerich passed away last May. I loved to visit with him and his wife, Annie. I still see Annie some, but I don’t get to go as much as I would like.
Sharon – I haven’t been to Ethridge in several years and am so sorry to hear of Mr. Gingerich’s death. I always stopped by their roadside stand to purchase something and to chat, and so, apparently, did everyone else. He was so gregarious and friendly and interested in us and in explaining Amish ways. I was chatting with his wife one time while a number of grandchildren were playing nearby, and I asked her casually how many grandchildren she had; she paused in thought for a second and then replied “115”!!
Good luck to Mr. Secich in Maine – isn’t it cold enough most of the year up there?
Many of you would probably enjoy Joel Salatin’s writings. One of his books is, “Everything I want to do is illegal.”
Most of the health regulations today are an industrial system, meant to favor big businesses that can afford the paperwork — and conversely can afford to have a disease outbreak.
We probably should exempt farmer-processors who sell direct to the public, or through stores in their own county — folks who the repercussions of a lack of quality is the end of their income.
Govt. vs. Amish
The comment section for this post is very interesting. I think it shows the inherent divide and anger in this country against the government. A black and white situation where the government (black hat) is always wrong and oppressive and the people (white hat)are the down-trodden and are unable to lift themselves up due to regulations. Of course nothing is ever that simple.
Awhile back there was the anti-vaccine movement, that said vaccines cause autism (which is scientifically impossible and has been proven to be a hoax). Here’s an interesting article in last month’s Atlantic about the Amish and vaccinology –
It shows, once again, that these issues can be twisted to make the government into the bad guys. It seems to me that scientific evidence and issues are twisted to serve one’s own political persuasion – whether it is raw milk, or vaccines, or GMOs, ice houses or refrigerators, creationism or evolution, etc. etc. ad infinitum.
Science however is impervious to paperwork or governments or anti-vaxxers or even the Amish. The facts are –
1. Harmful organisms can grow on meat stored at a certain temp. I’m sure Mr. Sesich is aware of this.
2. The mountains of paperwork are excessive for a single-manned business as evidenced in the NPR article.
3. The State wants to work with Mr. Secich to keep his business open. Clearly they don’t want to shut him down. They want to make sure the ice house maintains a certain temperature. Mr. Secich won’t measure the temperature every 2 hours because it tires him out (as quoted above). This places a burden on the government to simply trust that the ice house maintains the perfect temp for meat storage at all times.
It appears to me that dear Mr. Secich could find a way to log the temperature of the ice house, either to have multiple family members record the temp in shifts, or to find a temperature gauge recorder powered by batteries.
It seems a much easier solution than to stir up hatred for the State food and safety workers who’s only job is to protect the consumer.
With regards to paper work – I believe that should be revisited by the FDA and the State so that small businesses could comply. This would take contacting one’s state representative in government so something could be remedied for Mr. Secich and other one-manned operations.
Once again – nothing is black and white. Every story has two sides. The government is not always evil. The small business is not always right. There has to be a good and faithful willingness between two parties to solve a problem. Not just write it off.
I hate to say this – but it appears that Mr. Secich might benefit from a better (perhaps more humble) attitude in working with the Mr. Bott who has shown a willingness to aid Charcuterie. Instead of informing the press that he might have to shut down because he’s too tired to measure the temperature of an ice house every two hours (which could be done with a cheap device run on batteries).
I think that it’s ridiculous that the Government is so quick to site this Man for trying to run an honest and decent business but yet they allow disgusting filthy strip clubs that promote prostitution to stay open with NO problem!! Not only are they the cause of abuse to women and children, but they are a health hazard even more so than this man’s meat and cheese business!!! Women readily available to spread whatever std they have to the rest of the public to earn a filthy dollar!!The Government turns their head, since they get a hefty amount of money from this seedy type of business!!! I hope that everything works out for this good man and send him Best Wishes on his future.
Good Gravy! or...would the Government allow for such a thing??
Wow, I was stunned to read of all of these issues! Naturally people need to exercise good judgment, and try to keep their restaurants and shops sanitary, as much as possible. Since the State has an issue, why don’t THEY come down and monitor the temperature themselves? No, they would rather dump on the business and force them to do so. It ranks right up there with the idea I thought of regarding the Infernal oops Internal Revenue Service: I work, my taxes are deducted from my pay and sent in under my social security and other identifying information. Everything is done accordingly, and I only hold one job. Why in BLAZES am I or anyone else like me required to fill out Federal, State, and Local paperwork to tell them what they supposedly already know? What a WASTE of dollars and time. I already have a job, why should I have to do theirs too?!!! Well, such is the price of living in blessed America, which as we can see every day, slips further down the road leading away from blessed and into the abyss. But here I digress. I’ll say a prayer that the Charcuterie (love the name, it is so francais!)will somehow be able to stay open. I once heard of a lady in Maryland who wasn’t allowed to market her jams and jellies, because the State wanted to say she didn’t comply with “regulations.” Never mind that her people had been making them the same wholesome way for GENERATIONS. Never mind she tried and tried. Well, thank you for confirming what I have suspected all along: if you are an entrepreneur, you’re fighting an uphill battle right from the get-go!
Update - good news for Secich
Just to update the story, sounds like there is good news for Secich and his store. As the Maine Ag Dept inspector suggested, looks like they have been able to find a solution.
The below is taken from: https://bangordailynews.com/2016/03/17/homestead/amish-chef-owner-of-charcuterie-says-store-will-remain-open/?ref=topStories7
UNITY, Maine — Amish chef Matthew Secich of Charcuterie looked like a new man Tuesday as he bounded happily around his small store checking on the cheeses in the smoker and planning for the week to come.
The black cloud that seemed to hang over his head earlier in March because of his frustration over high food safety regulatory hurdles and heavy paperwork requirements had vanished. On Monday, he was visited by two new inspectors from the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry’s Division of Quality Assurance and Regulations and described the visit as very positive — a big shift from the way he felt after previous visits from state inspectors.
“It’s a new day. I have a smile on my face. I made a duck sausage I haven’t made in three weeks. I’ve been playing with food all day,” Secich said. “I feel that the state will be working with us.”
Thanks for sharing this update, Erik. This is exactly how government should work–establishing regulations and working with people to meet them appropriately. I’m glad to hear it’s all working out for the best.
Wow! Such good news! I hope everything goes well at the charcuterie. C’est tout à fait formidable que vous pouvez faire encore la bonne cuisine français!! Ich wünsche Ihnen weiterhin besten Erfolg und viel Freude an Ihrer Arbeit im Bereich der feineren Küche
I’m happy for Charcuterie. I somehow knew this would come to pass. And I hope that Mr. Secich has a good time “playing with his food”. 🙂
health regs regarding maine amish meat business
just leave these good people alone…so sick of this tyranical govt pushing every small business around . first its the manure then its the freezer. God help us but i am more than sure the amish sell better meat than the trash you get in the supermarkets. God bless and protect the amish.
Heather, I would be interested in hearing how you now feel about the safety of raw milk in light of this information:
Yes, I saw that Lynette. One person gave his or her life for that glass of milk. It’s a shame. One plays Russian Roulette when one discounts science.
Being a practicing Catholic I can tell you that religious freedom is under attack more than ever. For Catholics against HHS mandate, for the Amish it’s the food. I read somewhere once that said big government small brains
As a person who works for the Catholic Church – I can assure you we are not under attack. I dare say it’s Women who are under attack from the Catholic Church.
If you’re referring to the Supreme Court case involving the Catholic Church in the USA providing contraceptives under their health plans – guess what – there are MILLIONS and MILLIONS of Catholic women who already take contraceptives not to block unwanted pregnancies but to, in fact, regulate their hormones due to menopausal symptoms that are mild to so severe it debilitates their daily routine. Why should they have to pay for that out of pocket when men don’t have to pay for the same medicines due to an endocrine disease?
By the way Pope Francis wants no part of this “religious war” talk and has told the Bishopric to change its course from blame and shame talk – to mercy and forgiveness. He speaks like a true Christian.
And here I thought the website had to do with AMISH. All of a sudden it’s a political discussion about the Catholic church and women’s rights? As if there weren’t already COUNTLESS other sites devoted to those issues.
Amen, James. Let’s stick to Amish and Plain issues.
My Subject May Become Your Grievance.
Whenever I feel the need to think about off-subject material, “I lie down until it goes away” is an old suggestion. … So as to funny quotes, I think – “Logic will get you from A to Z; imagination will get you everywhere.” Albert Einstein. Perhaps within imagination, many thoughts become subject material for off-subject minds with a grievance that readily provokes disputation. Smiley face.