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By Hugh McNichol
Catholic Online

Vote early, vote Catholic and vote Pro-Life!

Today across the United States we are engaged in a Super Fat Tuesday. No, I am not indicating that the day has gained any more weight over the others, but there are 2 forces engaged today, political struggles, and moral struggles. The political struggle is obvious. Over half of the States that constitute the United States Republic are holding some form of primary election, caucus or electoral assembly. So, I offer the admonition to vote early, vote Catholic and most of all vote pro-life. The second aspect of this secular dualism today is that it is also Fat Tuesday, the day when we consume all of the fad laden and sweetly filled confections before the fast of Ash Wednesday and the penitential days of Lent.

Both events are secular events. However both events have strong ties and are reflective of our Catholic theological lives and call towards sanctification. In terms of politics, Catholics have indeed the obligation to vote for the candidate that best reflects the moral, ethical and social teaching of the Catholic Church. As faithful believers, we hold all human life as sacred, and it is also our sacred duty to ensure our elected officials get the message as well. There are no compromises on our Catholic life and human values. Our Catholic vote is the most effective tool we have to change the course of misguided political directions and restore morality to our legislative government.

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The second event, Fat Tuesday is a period of festivities and celebration. Most famously the great Mardi Gras takes place in the city of New Orleans. Often there are parades, copious volumes of intoxicating beverages and perhaps other activities of questionable moral nature. None the less, Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday has taken the Catholic principle of preparation for fast and abstinence and made it a carnival social event.

We have another aspect of today to keep in mind. Preparing for Lent, we need to realize the value of fasting and abstinence in our Catholic lives, not because we are perhaps getting a little paunchy in the midsection. We need to use our fasting and abstinence as an example of global penitence as we realize the excesses of secularism and consumerism that has become so mach a part of our Catholic lives. Our response and responsibility to teach and evangelize all nations also extends to the sharing of all natural resources equally with each other, and this includes all foods and grains.

As we celebrate Fat Tuesday with revelry, and demonstrate through our vote that political Super Tuesday will determine the American political future...lets remember both as gifts of God's grace and gift of free will to all peoples. As we prepare for the great penitential season of Lent and endure the sometimes penitential season of American electoral politics, lets keep a focus on the real Divine nature and participation that comes from our voting Catholic, and fasting for our temporal conversion from consumptive consumerism.


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Hugh McNichol - Catholic author, 302 6339348




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