There is nothing like practical application to move principles from the theoretical to the real and relevant. The virtual conversation this question invites is an attempt to do just that, asking you to frame the rationale for your voting choice in terms of Catholic teaching (resources below) and the facts/policies/platforms/proposals of the candidates surrounding real issues. Thinking through and articulating a response to this question is just one valuable part of the process.
By making it a conversation where people can respond to one another, additional things take place. First, we are challenged to practice honest and respectful dialogue with people having different views on potentially emotionally charged topics. In common discourse we typically avoid these conversations especially when we cherish a particular relationship and don’t want it “soured by politics.” In this conversation we will assume we are in a cherished relationship with folks to whom we are bound in Christian love; one that isn’t so fragile that it will crumble from disagreement.
By presuming the other’s good will, not assuming motivations that aren’t expressed, by exercising restraint in language, and focusing on the content and not the person, we should be challenged to look at additional perspectives, to evaluate their merits, setting aside (based on reasoned consideration) those which don’t lay a claim on us, and incorporating them (at some level) when they do.
Helpful guidelines – while anonymity is fine (and necessary for anyone in a Church leadership or staff position) please use a means of identifying yourself that assists in having dialogue. If you want to receive an email whenever a new comment is posted you will need to give your email, but it will not be made public, or used in anyway except to generate the comment feed. Also be sure to check the box to receive emails for comments.
There will be regular monitoring of the conversation and any inappropriate comments removed. If circumstances are such that an extended period of time will leave the blog unmonitored then comments may be held before being published. If you have questions for further clarity you may email email@example.com.
Thank you for taking the time to participate.
May we keep one another in prayer!
Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship: A Call to Political Responsibility from the Catholic Bishops of the United States provides a framework for Catholics in the United States
This Fanning the Flame page has additional online resources, including a Bible, Catechism of the Catholic Church, and the US Catholic Catechism for Adults.