Senate refuses to bring back contract military chaplains

WASHINGTON (AP) — Catholic Masses could be cancelled for a second Sunday on dozens of military posts that have locked out contract priests during the partial government shutdown.

John Schlageter (SHLAG'-eh-tur), general counsel for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese for the Military Services, says priests remain barred from performing Mass and other ministry on about 50 military posts worldwide.

The House voted 400-1 to let contract chaplains return, but Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell's request for unanimous consent was blocked Wednesday when Pennsylvania Democrat Bob Casey objected.

The sponsor of the House resolution, Georgia Republican Doug Collins, is an Air Force chaplain who served in Iraq. Collins says he's amazed that the Senate would treat military troops' ability to worship as non-essential.

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