Live-blog: Health Care Debate

The First Freedom Center in Richmond is hosting a debate over the Affordable Care Act, including the requirement that religiously affiliated organizations and businesses must provide contraception insurance coverage for their employees. The panelists include Barry Lynn, executive director of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, and Kevin Walsh, associate professor at the University of Richmond School of Law.

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Catholic Advocacy Day Draws 270 to the Capitol

About 270 advocates turned out at the Virginia Catholic Conference headquarters Thursday in support of Catholic Advocacy Day, an annual event that rallies legislative support from Catholics across the commonwealth on issues relating to human life, dignity and the common good.

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A Faith Community on the Margins of Society

Even for an immigrant community, the Richmond Mixtecs face many significant cultural obstacles. In the mostly Hispanic Sacred Heart congregation, Mixtecs are still a minority of sorts, considering many are fluent in neither English nor Spanish. Like many immigrant communities, religion plays a major role in the lives and culture of the Mixtecs.

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Catholic Conference Assesses Legislative Session

The Virginia Catholic Conference experienced both triumphs and failures during the General Assembly’s recently concluded regular session. As victories, VCC Executive Director Jeff Caruso cited the passage of a bill to require an ultrasound before a woman has an abortion – and the defeat of a bill to expand the death penalty in Virginia.

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Law Would Let All ABC Stores Open Sunday

The General Assembly has passed a bill expanding the number of ABC stores that can open on Sundays.
Currently, state-owned liquor stores can operate on Sundays only in urban areas, such as cities with more than 100,000 residents. House Bill 896, sponsored by Delegate David Albo, R-Springfield, would allow the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Board to open any of its stores after 1 p.m. on Sundays.

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Cemetery Zoning Bill Is Gutted

Lawmakers responded to overwhelming protest by residents of James City County today by gutting large portions of a bill that would have exempted buildings on cemetery grounds from building codes. “When I introduced the bill, I had no idea there was a problem or issues in James City County,” said the legislation’s sponsor, Delegate Riley Ingram, R-Hopewell. “I am, of course, now keenly aware of that fact.”

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Record Turnout for Catholic Advocacy Day

About 250 members of the Richmond and Arlington dioceses participated Thursday in the Virginia Catholic Conference’s 2012 Catholic Advocacy Day. That was a record turnout for the annual event, said Jeffrey Caruso, the executive director of the VCC.

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Catholic Advocacy Day Set for Thursday

Catholic Advocacy Day, a one-day event where members of the Virginia Catholic Conference voice their concerns on 2012 legislation, takes place Thursday in downtown Richmond. Advocates will speak to Virginia legislators about such issues as the death penalty, religious freedom, health care and education, with a focus on “unborn life and ethical research standards.”

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