By Kathleen Gilbert

WASHINGTON, D.C., September 15, 2009 ( – Another U.S. Catholic bishop has joined in criticizing President Obama’s health care overhaul, insisting that any such legislation must avoid promoting abortion and urging against the unwarranted expansion of government into the private sphere.

Bishop Thomas Doran of Rockford, Illinois wrote in the diocesan newspaper The Observer last month that the principles of subsidiarity, solidarity, and interest in the common good are indispensable to positive health care reform. Doran advised that health care be treated as “more of a market than a system,” and warned against the pitfalls of a government takeover.

“Our federal bureaucracy is a vast wasteland strewn with the carcasses of absurd federal programs which proved infinitely worse than the problems they were established to correct,” wrote Doran. 

Doran’s remarks reflect the widespread unrest among conservative Americans that led to a massive grassroots rally on Saturday against the Obama administration’s health care initiative and government expansion. Estimates for the number of attendees at the “tea party” protest on Capitol Hill spanned from “tens of thousands” to well over a million.

The bishop also wrote that, “whatever we do,” respect for “all human life from conception to natural death” is the first principle that must be respected in any such bill.

He quoted the warning of the Catholic Medical Association, which has expressed significant concerns over the Obama reform.  The medical group wrote: “The clear historical experience in the United States assures that a unitary, or a single payer, system of health care financing and administration would profoundly subvert the sanctity of human life.”

“Modern socialist governments like to control not food but the means to protect and extend life. Some have called the current efforts of our federal government ‘senioricide’ or ‘infanticide,’” wrote Doran. “That perhaps is too severe, but we as Catholics should take care that health care does not morph into life control.”

Bishop Samuel Aquila of Fargo, Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver, Archbishop Joseph Naumann of Kansas City and and Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City-St. Joseph have also criticized the Obama Administration legislation for its expansion of abortion, euthanasia, and government control.

See related coverage:

Bishop Aquila Holds the Line against Abortion-Promoting Health Care Reform

Kansas Bishops Criticize Healthcare over Abortion, Failure to Respect Subsidiarity

Abp. Chaput Steps up Pressure on Obamacare: Funding Abortions not ‘Common Ground’