Stanley Cup winning goaltender: ‘I stand with Catholics’ against birth control mandate
BOSTON, February 9, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Boston Bruins star goalie Tim Thomas sent waves through the sports world Wednesday when he announced through his Facebook page that he supports Catholics in their fight against the Obama administration’s mandate that forces coverage of contraception, sterilizations, and abortion-inducing drugs.
“I Stand with the Catholics in the fight for Religious Freedom,” wrote Thomas, who won last year’s Conn Smythe Trophy as the Stanley Cup MVP.
To date over 170 Catholic bishops heading U.S. dioceses have spoken up against the mandate after Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced last month that religious groups objecting to the mandate would be given one year to comply.
In his post Wednesday, Thomas quotes from a poem called “First They Came….” by prominent German anti-Nazi theologian and Lutheran pastor Martin Niemöller, which deals with the failure to speak up during the rise of Nazism in Germany.
“In Germany they came first for the Communists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn’t speak up because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me, and by that time no one was left to speak up,” Thomas wrote.
The goaltender made headlines in January when he refused to visit the White House with his teammates as part of a celebration of their Stanley Cup win.
He explained on his Facebook page at the time that he believes “the Federal government has grown out of control, threatening the Rights, Liberty, and Property of the People.”
“Because I believe this, today I exercised my right as a Free Citizen, and did not visit the White House. This was not about politics or party, as in my opinion both parties are responsible for the situation we are in as a country,” he continued.
Though the controversy over Obama’s mandate has centered on Catholics, leaders from numerous Christian denominations and religions have spoken out strongly against it, even pledging to go to jail if needed.
“We want the law changed, or else we’re going to write our letters from the Nashville jail, just like Dr. King wrote his from the Birmingham jail,” Dr. Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, told LifeSiteNews on Wednesday.
Conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart has dubbed Thomas a “true Tea Party patriot” due to his use of political symbolism on his goalie mask, including the phrase “In God We Trust” and the Gadsden Flag (a Tea party symbol), according to the International Business Times.
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