Monday, November 5, 2012

What's at stake when you enter the voting booth

Well, tomorrow is the big day.  In some ways it has felt like it will never come, and in other ways it's shocking that it's tomorrow.  But by tomorrow evening half of America will be huddled around the television or the laptop, waiting for each vote to be counted, waiting to hear the fate of the next four years.  

If you are 18 and haven't "early voted" or absentee voted yet, then when you walk into the polls tomorrow, here are a few things to remember:

- Does my Catholic faith surround, penetrate and deeply affect my civic life?  Is my faith first, ordering my civic duties in a way that reflects my priorities?  Or is my faith compartmentalized, checked in the car when I enter the polling place?  Which is more important?  Which orders and structures the other?

- What will my vote say about the dignity of the human person?  

- What will my vote say about the nature of marriage?

- What will my vote say about my desire to have religious freedom?  Does my vote cast gratitude, apathy, defense or nonchalance about religion in the public square?

There are some major issues at stake tomorrow.  We'll elect a president and vice president.  We'll elect our congressman.  Some of us will elect senators or governors.

Massachusetts will decide whether or not to enact doctor-prescribed suicide.

California will determine whether or not to abolish the death penalty.

Montana will vote on a parental notification law regarding abortion for minors.

Florida will choose whether or not their state right to privacy should include a right to abortion.

Maryland, Maine, Minnesota and Washington will vote on their state's definition of marriage.  

Yes, tomorrow is going to be a big day.  

We know that the Church stands for the dignity of all human persons, for the God-given gift of marriage as an institution between one man and one woman, for the right to religious freedom (not just a right to worship).

No matter what happens tomorrow, the Church's stance will not change.

The question that we decide tomorrow is ... Do our country and our Church stand together for the true good of the human person?  Or does the Church stand alone?

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