Voter Guide for Catholic Christians ~ There are a plethora of “voter guides” available. I’ve found these excerpts from our local Bishops to be particularly informative and helpful for incorporating our Catholic Faith, with informed and formed consciences, into the voting booth. Please take some time to read these excerpts. ~Fr Stirniman~
Weigh Your Conscience Before Casting Your Ballot
On November 3, 2020, all Americans eligible to vote will have the opportunity to shape our form of government for the next two years and beyond. In the midst of the commotion surrounding elections, especially presidential races, it is worth taking time to reflect on how fortunate we are to live in a country where we are able to choose our leaders.
According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, “Moral conscience, present at the heart of the person, enjoins him at the appropriate moment to do good and to avoid evil. It also judges particular choices, approving those that are good and denouncing those that are evil. It bears witness to the authority of truth in reference to the supreme Good to which the human person is drawn, and it welcomes the commandments. When he listens to his conscience, the prudent man can hear God speaking.” (1777)
Rejoice and Be Glad (Gaudete et Exsultate) [Pope Francis]
“The threat of abortion remains our preeminent priority because it directly attacks life itself, because it takes place within the sanctuary of the family, and because of the number of lives destroyed. At the same time, we cannot dismiss or ignore other serious threats to human life and dignity such as racism, the environmental crisis, poverty and the death penalty.”
Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship [Bishops of Illinois]
This note will not tell you who to vote for, but it will help you to reflect on the issues and the person that can best promote the common good for each office. We ask that you keep in mind the following questions that stem from the seven themes of Catholic Social Teaching:
- Does the candidate work to protect sacred human life from conception to natural death? Does the candidate oppose abortion, physician-assisted suicide, capital punishment, human cloning and racism?
- Does the candidate care for God’s creation? Does the candidate support policies that protect the planet and understand the importance of our stewardship of the Earth?
- Does the candidate recognize traditional marriage and family as the central social institutions that must be supported?
- Does the candidate recognize that every person has a fundamental right to life and to those things required for human decency, including food, water, shelter, employment and health care?
- Does the candidate embrace all those in greatest need who deserve our preferential concerns, such as children, the disabled, the elderly, refugees, the unemployed and the poor?
- Does the candidate recognize policies that promote basic rights for workers, such as fair wages, workplace safety, collective bargaining, and the right to private property and economic initiatives?
- Does the candidate recognize that whatever our national, racial, ethnic or ideological differences, we are all our brothers’ and sisters’ keepers? We must all work to create unity through dialogue and a civil discourse that is respectful to others.