The U.S. Supreme Court went out of session this morning and did so with a bang. The high court took three actions that affect church-state separation.
Here’s a rundown on what happened:
Trinity Lutheran v. Comer: Americans United has been warning for more than a year that it could erode the church-state wall. The ruling is harmful – but not as bad as it might have been.
In an 8-0 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that religiously affiliated hospitals could jeopardize the financial security of hundreds of thousands of workers nationwide. The decision involves three cases – Dignity Health v. Starla Rollins, Advocate Health Care Network v. Maria Stapleton and St. Peter’s Healthcare System v. Laurence Kaplan.
It was a busy morning at the Supreme Court. The high court handed down a decision in an important case dealing with religiously affiliated hospitals and employee pensions. We’ll have some analysis of that case later. For now, let’s take a look at a case that justices decided not to hear – Sterling v. United States.
When I was in seminary in Wilmore, Ky., I served as a part-time missions pastor at a United Methodist church in town. The church was going through some transitions and was trying to figure out a vision for the coming months and years. The church had long been focused on caring for its own members through discipleship and preaching, but the members wanted to be more connected with the community, particularly with those who had yet to venture inside our doors.
A suburban Chicago school board race this spring was seen as a referendum on transgender rights. According to Tuesday’s unofficial election results, transgender rights won.
Over a year ago, the school board for Township High School District 211 in the Palatine-Schaumburg area northwest of Chicago approved a settlement with the U.S. Department of Education to allow transgender students to use the restrooms and locker rooms consistent with their gender identity.
The U.S. Supreme Court upheld marriage equality almost two years ago, and some supporters of the Religious Right are still smarting about that.
Today the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments in a trio of cases that will decide whether religiously affiliated hospital systems must comply with federal pension protections. The large health systems don’t want to; they argue they should get a narrow exemption to the law carved out for houses of worship. But these health systems, with nearly 100,000 employees, are not churches.