Faith in Florida – Hillsborough
Faith in Florida – Hillsborough has received three consecutive grants from the CCHD since 2018, including its most recent grant of $40,000. Since 2018, Faith in Florida – Hillsborough has received a total of $100,000.
At issue is that Faith in Florida – Hillsborough is an affiliate of Faith in Action, which has formally decided to fight for abortion as a “right,” and an affiliate of Faith in Florida, which has taken the same position. In addition to this, the leadership of Faith in Florida has declared their allegiance to the fight for abortion so-called “rights” as well.
The CCHD absolutely forbids organizations from membership in organizations acting against Catholic teaching. In an FAQ on the USCCB website, the CCHD directly answers the question about whether grantees may be members of coalitions that oppose Catholic teachings. In answer, the CCHD firmly stated, “CCHD will not fund groups that are knowingly members of coalitions that have as part of their organizational purpose or coalition agenda, positions or actions that contradict fundamental Catholic moral and social teaching.”
Faith in Florida – Hillsborough is a local member of Faith in Florida, which is an affiliate of Faith in Action. It’s like the finger on the hand of an arm. As you can see here, Faith in Florida is an affiliate of Faith in Action.
Faith in Action is a coalition of 49 members, many of whom receive funding from the CCHD. Faith in Action itself received $500,000 in 2016 from the CCHD, when it was called the PICO Network. However, Faith in Action publicly supports abortion, its leaders openly slammed the overturn of Roe v. Wade, and FIA participated in electioneering activities in support of President Joe Biden and other Democratic candidates. The organization also supports LGBTQ+ ideologies. All of the pertinent information regarding Faith in Action on the whole is contained in the fully detailed report on FIA (see here), but the most important point is this:
On the day of the Supreme Court’s ruling on the Dobbs v. Jackson case which overturned Roe v. Wade, Faith in Action took a formal position condemning the ruling, while vowing to “stand with women” calling it “oppression” to deny a woman the right to murder her child through abortion.
In an official press release, published on Faith in Action’s website, Faith in Action said:
“Clergy and organizers with Faith in Action, the largest grassroots, faith-based organizing network in the United States, are speaking out against today’s Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, following a leak of the Supreme Court opinion.”
FIA’s executive director Rev. Alvin Herring called the decision, “a huge blow to women in this season of despair,” and declared that ”[w]e must speak out against dangerous policies that chip away at having agency over their own bodies.”
Rev. Dr. Cassandra Gould, FIA’s Senior Strategist at FIA’s Washington, DC office, claimed that the “SCOTUS decision to overturn ROE” was “legalized, judicially enforced oppression” that “shows contempt for the Creator.”
Rev. Kamilah Hall Sharp, member of FIA’s Organizing Clergy Board, said that the decision to overturn Roe v. Wade was “deadly,” and that she was “enraged at the injustice, the lack of care for women and that most people who voted to take this right away will never have to carry an unwanted pregnancy to term in their bodies.” She then had the audacity to claim that “As a follower of Jesus,” her rage about the overturning of Roe “aligns with [H]is.”
This is the entire statement as it appeared on the Faith in Action website:
But the problems with Faith in Florida – Hillsborough don’t just lie with the pro-abortion position of Faith in Action. As a member of Faith in Florida, the issue is actually far more direct. On Faith in Florida’s “Community” page, it identifies Hillsborough as one of its local locations.
It should be noted that Faith in Florida – Hillsborough actually shares the same mailing address as Faith in Florida in Orlando (which is the network center for all Faith in Florida members), while the physical address is a Catholic Charities location. It should also be noted here that the “registered agent” for Faith in Florida Hillsborough is Rhonda Thomas, the executive director of Faith in Florida (see below for her statement on Roe v. Wade). When looking up public records on Faith in Action – Hillsborough, we discovered the registered physical and mailing addresses here:
When looking up the physical address, “3204 San Diego Lane, Dover, FL 33527,” we find this:
And while the physical address of Faith in Florida – Hillsborough is the same as a Catholic Charities location, the mailing address is the same as the physical address of Faith in Florida, as identified at the bottom of their website.
On June 28, Faith in Florida joined the national Faith in Action in slamming the SCOTUS decision by issuing its own statement.
In the full statement from Faith in Florida (FIF), Rhonda Thomas, FIF’s executive director, declared that “Overturning Roe v. Wade is unacceptable” as her organization on the whole stated:
“Faith in Florida stands in solidarity with women making the best decisions for their reproductive and maternal health.”
In the full statement, which included quotes from Nanci Palacios, Deputy Director for Faith in Florida and Dr. LaVon Bracy, Director of Democracy for Faith in Florida, the unanimous course of action is that Faith in Florida is committed to using local elections as a means of enshrining a “right” to abortion into law.
In addition to this, Faith in Florida has publicly promoted syncretism, which is a heresy. In April 11 of 2022, Faith in Florida posted an image saying “Holy Week” with the symbols of multiple non-Christian and even pagan religious sects, including Wiccans, Sikhs, Muslims, Baha’is, Hindus, Jews, and Buddhists.
On Twitter, Faith in Florida provided a written explanation of their post, again strongly indicating the heresy of syncretism.
Faith in Florida – Hillsborough is a member of Faith in Action and Faith in Florida, both of which have openly professed their intention to fight for abortion as a “right.” Additionally, Faith in Florida is clearly promoting the heresy of syncretism. There can be no moral justification for the CCHD to provide any funding to this organization.