Do We Know How to Vote?

By remembering that “Jesus calls us to a unity of life — to a faith that embraces all of life,” Archbishop José H. Gomez of Los Angeles advises.

In his most recent column for the archdiocesan paper, he writes:

we owe God the duty of our sincere and true faith. That means we can never allow our beliefs to be watered-down. We can’t forget about the Church’s teachings and the demands of God’s law when we are engaged in our public life.

There are certain “non-negotiables” in Catholic social teaching. As we all know, there are some laws and tendencies in our society that violate God’s laws and the natural rights and dignity of the human person.

Abortion and euthanasia are never allowed because they involve the direct taking of innocent human life. There is also no negotiating the God-given definition of marriage and family based on the permanent and exclusive union of one man and one woman.

But on most of the big issues today — issues like taxes and government spending, immigration, or how best to help the poor — there are moral principles that we should consider. But sincere and faithful Catholics are always going to have legitimate differences of opinion over how best to apply the Church’s moral principles.

The most important thing is to form our consciences. We have to make sure our participation and our contributions always reflect the moral and religious values that we find in the Scriptures and in the teachings of our Church.

So as we enter the final weeks of what has been an intense election campaign, we need to pray for one another and our country. We give our country our best as citizens when we are trying to be totally faithful to the teachings of Christ and his Church.

Could every American of faith pray for one another and our nation these next weeks? So that citizens may approach voting with wisdom and love. And share. Share what you know. Share what clarifies. Share Archbishop Gomez above or George Weigel here. Share Helen Alvaré here. Know you’re not alone.


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