1. Child welfare in the midst of the pandemic — an excellent panel I highly recommend viewing:
One-time mayoral candidate and state Rep. LaShawn Ford from Chicago’s West Side has pushed for so- called “shared responsibility” legislation. It requires family court judges to begin custody decisions with the presumption that 50-50 shared custody is best and that both parents are presumed to be “fit” unless there is “clear and convincing evidence that parent’s exercise of parenting time would seriously endanger the child’s physical, mental, moral, or emotional health.”
James 1:27 states, “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.”
I believe that the Lord commands His people to care for and visit the orphan, not because there is a desire to “civilize ‘savage’ children,” but because family is an essential need for any and every child’s flourishing.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson has warned that too much bureaucracy is making it harder for people to adopt resulting in too many children ‘bouncing around’ the care system.
. . .
Mr Williamson also called for an end to an ‘obsession with finding the perfect ethnic match for children’, with Black and Minority Ethnic children often wait the longest to be adopted. He stated that there is no acceptable reason why adopters should be blocked from registering simply because there are no children of the same ethnicity waiting to be adopted.
In England 32% of children leaving care are young people “ageing out” of the system when they reach their 18th birthday. A third are likely to become homeless within the first two years; a quarter of all homeless people are care-experienced. Only 12% of care leavers are in higher education by the age of 23, compared with 42% among the wider population; 39% of care-leavers aged 19-21 are not in education, employment or training – three times the rate of all young people in this age group. Almost half of males under 21 who have contact with the criminal justice system are care-experienced.
. . .
The care system has been producing terrible outcomes for our country’s most vulnerable young people for decades. Sadly, the sector has become immune to the shock of them.
If Judge Barrett’s nomination is confirmed by the Senate, it is possible that the U.S. Supreme Court will begin to allow greater latitude for the Congress and state Legislatures to protect both the lives of unborn children, as well as parents from experiencing the spiritual and emotional scars that inevitably result from abortion.
The protection of the unborn is not just the preeminent issue when we vote, but it also must be a high pastoral priority for the Catholic community.