Bishop Conley: “Voting Helps Protect the Unborn, the Family,
the Poor, and the Freedom of Conscience”
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By Bishop James D. Conley: Southern Nebraska Register
Election Day is a reminder of our obligation to one another—our obligation to support the common good, and to build a civilization of love.
Voting is a civic duty.
Sadly, many Catholics in our state do not vote on Election Day. I don’t understand why. I have never missed voting in an election ever since I reached voting age. Even during my 12 years of living in Rome, I never missed voting in an election year through an absentee ballot. Voting is a means of expressing our hopes for our communities, a means of pursuing justice, and of building a culture of life. Voting is a means to help protect the unborn, the family, the poor, and the freedom of conscience and faith in public life. Voting is a civic duty. It seems to me that not voting, unless there are very grave reasons to abstain, is a sin—and when we fail to vote for reasons no better than apathy or forgetfulness, we ought to confess that.
Whenever possible, Catholics have an obligation to vote—particularly when critical issues are at stake. Today, in our country, critical issues are certainly at stake. Abortion remains our national shame. Our failure to protect the unborn is a failure of the highest magnitude. The right to life is the foundational human right.
Religious people are being systematically marginalized in public life, in business, and in schools. The sanctity of marriage as we have always known it, is being undermined. The family, and the right of children to have mothers and fathers, is under attack.
And the dignity of the poor, whom we are called to love zealously, is often undermined by policy initiatives and greed.
We are connected to every single member of our community—living or dead. We ought to pray for them. And we ought to do all that we can to build a culture of justice, of liberty, and a culture of life.
Bishop James D. Conley