Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia Schools Go Cage-Free

As animals at the manger go, chickens are not often mentioned in the story of the Nativity. But egg-laying hens became a part of the Christmas story in 2008, when the largest Catholic school system in the country extended some mercy to these animals—among the most abused on factory farms.

The Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia school system, which includes 20 high schools, is now using only cage-free eggs.

These schools join more than 350 other schools who use cage free eggs.

The Roman Catholic Church has a number of statements on animals in regard to care for creation including:

“Animals are God’s creatures. He surrounds them with his providential care. By their mere existence they bless him and give him glory.  Thus men owe them kindness. We should recall the gentleness with which saints like St. Francis of Assisi or St. Philip Neri treated animals … It is contrary to human dignity to cause animals to suffer or die needlessly.” —from Catechism of the Catholic Church, Part Three, Section Two, Chapter Two, Article 7, 2:2416

“Our food choices have moral and spiritual significance, and people of faith know that it’s simply wrong to cram hens into cages so small they can barely move,” states Christine Gutleben, HSUS director of Animals & Religion. “The Humane Society of the United States applauds the Archdiocese of Philadelphia for its decision to move away from eggs from caged hens.”

Thanks to The Humane Society of the United States for this information.

Jan. 29, 2009