Tyndale House is asking for prayers as a judge hears its case against the HHS mandate on Friday.
The hearing in Tyndale House Publishers v. Sebelius is the first in the publisher’s Oct. 2 lawsuit filed with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Tyndale House, based in Carol Stream, Ill., is the world’s largest privately held Christian publisher of books, Bible, and digital media, and directs 96.5 percent of its profits to religious nonprofit causes worldwide.
"Friends, we covet your prayers today. At this very moment, my company's president is before a judge in Wash DC for a hearing on the lawsuit we filed against the federal government's HHS Mandate that forces us (and your companies too) to provide insurance coverage for abortion-inducing drugs regardless of religious or moral convictions," Maggie Rowe, a publicist at Tyndale, wrote on Facebook. "We just met to pray right now, and it was beautiful to hear prayers going up in Russian, Spanish, English. Pray that Judge Walton will award us a temporary injunction so that we will not to subject to penalties ($100 per DAY per FT employee) due to non-compliance with this mandate.
The publisher is subject to the mandate because Obama administration rules say for-profit corporations are categorically non-religious, even though Tyndale House is strictly a publisher of Bibles and other Christian materials and is primarily owned by the non-profit Tyndale House Foundation. The foundation provides grants to help meet the physical and spiritual needs of people around the world. The mandate forces employers, regardless of their religious or moral convictions, to provide insurance coverage for abortion-inducing drugs, sterilization and contraception under threat of heavy penalties. Tyndale House specifically objects to covering abortifacients.
“Bible publishers should be free to do business according to the book that they publish,” said Bowman. “For the government to say that a Bible publisher is not religious is alarming. It demonstrates how clearly the Obama administration is willing to disregard the Constitution’s protection of religious freedom to achieve certain political purposes. For that reason, we are asking the court to halt this mandate.”