Grave and serious issues.
Much has been discussed on blogs and in the news praising those U.S. Catholic Bishops (150+) uniting in response to the unprecedented threat to religious freedom stemming from the unjust "preventative services" mandate issued by Obama's HHS, which requires all private health care plans to provide coverage for all FDA-approved prescription contraceptives, sterilization procedures, and related "patient education and counseling for all women with reproductive capacity."
This weekend the letters of Archbishop Nienstedt and the statement of Archbishop Timothy Dolan were included in the weekly bulletin, and the pastor at my parish addressed both letters and the issue from the pulpit. Included in the bulletin BTW, was the first ever appearance of Archbishop Nienstedt's letter supporting the marriage amendment to the Minnesota State Constitution - in defense of marriage. (Up until this weekend, nothing has been said at my parish regarding the issue.)
The sense of urgency and gravity of these notices reminded me of the letter of the Dutch bishops read at all of the Masses during the Nazi occupation of WWII, specifically the pastoral letter of the Archbishop of Utrecht in the summer of 1942, protesting the Nazi persecution of Jews. The action resulted in an increased, more brutal persecution against Jews and Catholics. One may also recall how the Church in Germany publicly condemned the so-called "mercy killings" of physically and mentally disabled Germans in the 1930's by the Nazis. They stopped it - but only for a time, and only after the bishops spoke out. As we know, the policies were resumed and led to the Holocaust.
Pray for the bishops and the defeat of these policies, but keep in mind, it might just be the beginning of worse things to come.