View from the choir

I am a Catholic layperson and Secular Franciscan with a sense of humor. After years in the back pew watching, I have moved into the choir. It's nice to see faces instead of the backs of heads. But I still maintain God has a sense of humor - and that we are created in God's image.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

NY Bishops: Pro-life takes priority in voting

New York's Bishops - including Rochester's Bishop Matthew Clark - have said that abortion is a primary concern when voting.

In "Our Cherished Right, Our Solemn Duty" they declare:

It is the rare candidate who will agree with the Church on every issue. But as the U.S. Bishops’ recent document Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship makes clear, not every issue is of equal moral gravity. The inalienable right to life of every innocent human person outweighs other concerns where Catholics may use prudential judgment, such as how best to meet the needs of the poor or to increase access to health care for all.

The right to life is the right through which all others flow. To the extent candidates reject this fundamental right by supporting an objective evil, such as legal abortion, euthanasia or embryonic stem cell research, Catholics should consider them less acceptable for public office. As Faithful Citizenship teaches, “Those who knowingly, willingly, and directly support public policies or legislation that undermine fundamental moral principles cooperate with evil.”

I added the bold. The point is clear though: Abortion outweighs other issues.

I still can't figure out how those who claim to be Catholic - especially those claiming to be pro-life - can vote for Obama given the circumstances. If McCain was also pro-choice, or monumentally wrong on other issues, I could imagine holding one's nose and doing so. But he is not. He and Obama may differ on issues, but on many of these issues the differences are not enough to outweigh Obama's extreme position on abortion.

I'd love to see highlights from this in all parish bulletins.

(Full statement at:



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