The only LMs in PA are CNMs. The law specifically states that in order to practice midwifery in PA, you have to be a CNM. The very fact that they can be prosecuted if something goes wrong means that they are not legally "permitted" to practice.
In states where CPMs are legally permitted to practice, they don't face criminal charges and prison time if something goes wrong. Instead, they face a disciplinary hearing before a licensing board and potential loss of their license to practice, but they do not risk becoming a convicted felon as a result of practicing midwifery.
PA is not unique in terms of the religious aspect to home birth midwifery. There are women in every state who choose home birth for religious reasons, but the state does not distinguish between midwives serving in religious communities and those who are not. Unless you have a statute that exempts midwives from practicing without a license for religious reasons, all midwives in the state are subject to the same laws.
Judy Wilson's clientele was primarily Amish/Mennonite and yet she was arrested and is awaiting trial. Same with Freeda ******, an Ohio Mennonite woman who practiced midwifery in her community and was arrested and spent six months in prison for refusing to reveal the source of her Pitocin. In that case, it wasn't even for something that went wrong but for something that went right, when she treated a life-threatening PPH with Pitocin. But because midwives in OH aren't licensed and authorized to carry Pit (no one who isn't licensed is authorized to carry Pit) she was arrested anyway.
It's easy for home birth consumers to become complacent when there's a lull in criminal prosecutions in their state or when they live in a state where CPMs have yet to be driven underground or out-of-state due to the threat of prosecution. But IL is a perfect example. Midwives there used to advertise in the yellow pages, work openly with doctors and hospitals, and there were more than enough of them to meet the demand for home birth in the state. A high profile criminal trial and a series of cease and desist orders changed all that literally overnight.
The only thing that will change it back is the passage of a law to license CPMs, which IL is very close to doing. But they're doing it from a serious disadvantage, being on the defensive and with their few remaining midwives unable to testify before the legislature out of fear of being arrested. As far as I know there's currently no organized movement in PA to license CPMs, though now would be a good time to do it while the climate there remains relatively tolerant and while midwives are still openly practicing.
Wisconsin Guild of Midwives