Pick of the web 1/3/14: baby shower; good pics; religious liberty up 53-7

With the new year, the New Hampshire legislature re-convenes. The festivities begin next Wednesday, January 8. If you’re not already familiar with the state legislature’s web page, check it out here. You’ll find links to help you contact your representatives and look up hearing dates for bills, among many other things.

Supporters of the Pray for Life Center in Manchester are having a baby shower on January 12 for a young expectant mother named Cassie. Details are on the Pray for Life Center Facebook page.

You might have seen Matthew Lomanno’s black-and-white documentary photography featured in the Diocese of Manchester’s Parable magazine. The New Hampshire photographer has produced a photo essay about the national March for Life that does a great job of capturing the spirit of this annual event.

The Alliance Defense Fund keeps track of court cases filed against the federal Department of Health and Human Services over the HHS mandate (requiring that contraceptives and abortion-inducing drugs be included in employer-provided health insurance policies under the president’s health care law). Kathryn Jean Lopez reports here on ADF’s finding that in 2013, 53 court rulings went in favor of the plaintiffs while only 7 went in favor of HHS. There have been no Supreme Court rulings on the mandate yet.

On the same topic, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor surprised a lot of people on New Year’s Eve when she issued a temporary injunction barring the administration from enforcing the birth control requirement against an order of Colorado nuns, the Little Sisters of the Poor, and related groups.