Bishop explains how voting can jeopardize your soul
Supporting intrinsically evil positions is spiritually dangerous.
Bishop David Ricken of the Diocese of Green Bay has gotten some attention in the media for stating the obvious. Ricken told parishioners that their souls could be in jeopardy should they vote for candidates that advocate "intrinsically evil" positions.
Bishop Ricken has warned parishioners not to support those who advocate evil positions.
Ricken did not tell anyone who, specifically, to vote for, but he was clear that your Christian conscience should inform your decision-making.
Many see voting as a trivial act, arguing that their vote does not matter. Yet the vote is a declaration of support for people and policies that can drive social change. Even casting a ballot for the losing side in an election stills ends a message that the losing position has your support. It acts as a brake on the momentum of the opposition.
What matters then, is that your vote is informed by your conscience. A good Christian ought not vote for a candidate or a party whose platform endorses the murder of unborn children, the corruption of marriage, and other morally objectionable planks.
Unfortunately, there are many candidates on both sides of the political spectrum that endorse morally objectionable platforms. For example, some candidates may rightly oppose abortion while endorsing other objectionable policies.
What Bishop Ricken is saying then, transcends party lines. Catholics, and indeed all Christians, are asked to vote their conscience. In other words, one should identify themselves as a Christian first, and a party member second.
All too often, one party of another claims the support of a demographic, such as Christians, while supporting positions that aren't very Christian.
By enforcing personal integrity at the voting booth, Christians can send a clear message to all candidates that they will not accept the advocacy of morally objectionable policies, regardless of party affiliation. In so doing, they will compel legislators and policymakers to reevaluate their stance and adopt more appropriate positions on the issues, informed by Christian conscience, even if they themselves lack that information.
Every reader is encouraged to read the Bishop's letter, which is linked here.
© 2012, Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: Bishop Ricken, Green Bay, evil, voting, gay marriage, abortion
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