Thursday, October 02, 2008

NYS Bishops Release Statement on Voting

We received the following from the New York State Catholic Conference:
Catholic Bishops Release Statement on Voting and Political Responsibility

Edward Cardinal Egan and the Catholic Bishops of New York State have issued an appeal to Catholic New Yorkers, urging them to vote in the coming general election. In a statement entitled Our Cherished Right, Our Solemn Duty , the bishops present a list of questions on important issues for voters to consider as they inform their consciences in preparation for entering the voting booth.

In the statement, the bishops warn against voting solely out of party loyalty or self interest. Instead, they wrote, Catholics should be guided by the Gospel teachings of Jesus Christ and the teachings of the Church on social issues. While noting that there are many issues of great importance facing the country, the protection of human life rises above all other issues, the bishops said. "The right to life is the right through which all others flow," they wrote. "To the extent candidates reject this fundamental right by supporting an objective evil, such as legal abortion, euthanasia or embryonic stem cell research, Catholic should consider them less acceptable for public office."

In the statement, the bishops stressed that voters have an obligation not only to learn the positions of the presidential candidates, but of all of the candidates, including those running for the state legislature. "Many of the most compelling moral issues of the day play out at the state level," they wrote.

The bishops presented questions on issues related to the right to life, parental rights in education, protecting marriage, immigration reform, access to health care, protecting the poor and religious liberty.

Please remember to vote on November 4.

The statement can be read here.