Mercifully, (so far!) spring travels around the state have been successful. Last year, spring snows made it difficult, and at times, impossible to keep scheduled appointments and confirmation celebrations.
In the past five days, I’ve logged 1,300 miles to attend the K of C state convention in Jackson, celebrate Confirmations in Jackson and Rock Springs, with a brief stop and visit in Pinedale, returned to Cheyenne for some meetings, drove to Casper for another meeting and a very important engagement yesterday afternoon in Federal Court for a hearing in which the Diocese of Cheyenne along with five other Catholic institutions are seeking relief from the HHS mandated coverage for contraceptive and sterilization services and abortion inducing drugs, and finally, returned to Cheyenne last night.
Yesterday’s hearing in Federal Court was quite interesting, with counsel from both the Catholic Church and the US Department of Justice making arguments before The Honorable Scott Skavdahl. I was impressed with the well-prepared manner in which Judge Skavdahl interrogated both counsels in his attempt to understand the fundamental issue of the case, namely determining whether the requirements of the HHS mandate indeed pose a substantial burden upon Church institutions. Clearly, I as a pastor along with the Catholic Church believes the HHS Mandate does pose a serious and substantial burden upon us.
I’m glad we had the opportunity to make our case before Judge Skavdahl, and now we eagerly await his decision. Please keep this deliberation in your prayers.
Despite another dusting of snow last night, I should be able to make it to Laramie for a Confirmation celebration tonight and then tomorrow, I’ll make my way to Lander for this year’s end of the academic year Mass and graduation ceremonies. From there, I’ll make my way to Green River and Rawlins for another couple of Confirmations, and then back in Cheyenne Tuesday. Please pray for safe travels.
In the meantime, know of my prayers for all of you. May this Easter Season continually renew the Life of the Risen Lord within us, and may this presence of Christ in our life be our abiding joy!
Live the Faith!