As faithful Catholics, it is our duty and obligation to take part in shaping the moral character of our community, our state, and our country. One important way to do this is through our civic responsibility to participate in the political process, and this can be done through voting.

The core to the Catholic Church’s moral and social teaching is the truth of the dignity of the human person and sacredness of every human life. We are people of both faith and reason, so it is necessary for us to speak about these truths in the public square. We are also called to promote the common good, which is the well-being of all, to share our blessings with those most in need, to defend marriage, and to protect the lives and dignity of all, especially the weak, the vulnerable, the voiceless. In his first encyclical letter, Deus Caritas Est, Pope Benedict XVI explained that “charity must animate the entire lives of the lay faithful and therefore also their political activity, lived as ‘social charity’” (no. 29).

The United States constitution gives our citizenry a unique opportunity for self-government through the election of our public officials. The constitution also protects the citizenry’s right of conscience to live out their faith in the public square, free of government interference or discrimination. The moral fabric of society and our laws depend on the engagement of the Catholic faithful in the political process. Our social teaching, drawn from human reason and illuminated by Scripture, offers a consistent moral framework to guide our actions in the voting booth and hold our leaders accountable, particularly government leaders who profess the Catholic faith. Our involvement in public life, especially in a time of so much civic unrest and a need to address wrongs of the past and present, will ultimately help shape the moral character of our society for the future. Politics, therefore, is a “noble mission to promote the common good.”

“We need to participate for the common good. Sometimes we hear: a good Catholic is not interested in politics. This is not true: good Catholics immerse themselves in politics by offering the best of themselves so that the leader can govern.”

Pope Francis, September 16, 2013

2020 Ballot Initiatives

Voting as a Catholic