Some might see the Catholic Church as a slumbering, irrelevant relic that pushes prudish ideas upon a dwindling flock, but it has over 1 billion members and maintains about a quarter of a million health and educational facilities around the world.

Its contributions are impossible to calculate since many other health and educational institutions have arisen from those facilities, and when you combine that with 2,000 years of sharing the Gospel, it is clear that the Catholic Church is the most relevant factor in the history of the world.

So I find it interesting to see critics leaping to their feet to express their differences over the Church's position on the health-care mandate, after they have remained so silent about the unmatched level of service that it has provided for the world ever since the time of Christ.

Joseph Carducci, Pittsburgh carducci@hotmail.com

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