Hudson and Fournier: Catholic Countdown to Election 2012, Day 40. Beware the 'Catholic' Supporters of Obama
We will talk to you tomorrow, and every day between now and November 6th!
Those who have read us both know that we have not always agreed. However, we have chosen to combine our voices at a critical time in U.S. History to do absolutely everything we can do to influence this election! So we will do just that in this series leading to the most important election in our lifetime.
WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - We begin our forty day countdown series on the Feast of St. Francis DeSales, a Doctor of the Universal Church who is associated with the undeniable call for Christians to show a "love of preference to the poor". Catholic Social teaching is not "left" or "right", "liberal", "conservative" or "neo-conservative", Democrat or Republican.
It confronts what Pope Benedict properly called the "Dictatorship of Relativism" even before he assumed the Papal office. It insists there are unchangeable truths which are revealed by the Natural Law, can be known through the exercise of reason and should inform the social order in every just society.
At the foundation of all these truths is the truth concerning dignity of every human person at every age and stage. To be Pro-Life is NOT to be "single issue" in your political positions; it is about having a world view. It is the dignity of the human person which requires a respect for every human life whether that life be in the first home of the womb, a wheelchair, a jail cell, a hospital room, a hospice, a senior center or a soup kitchen.
Another one of these truths is that marriage is between one man and one woman, intended for life, and ordered toward the bearing and raising of children in the family. Marriage is not some social construct which can be redefined by courts or legislatures. It is the foundation for family and family is the first society, first church, first school, first economy, first government and first mediating institution. The first community which humanizes and civilizes all of us is the family.
Another is that all human persons created in the Image of God are created for relationship and called to human community. We can never fully experience human flourishing outside of social relationships. These relationships are perfective of our human person because we are by nature - and grace - made for these relationships. Catholic Social Thought does not begin with the individual but with the family. The social doctrine affirms our obligation in solidarity to one another. We are our brother/sister's keeper.
The social doctrine of the Catholic Church rejects a notion of "freedom" which begins and ends with the isolated, atomistic, person as the measure of its application. Authentic human freedom must be exercised within a moral constitution. We will only grow in freedom when we choose what is good and what is true. Otherwise "freedom" becomes a counterfeit and enslaves us, as individuals and as nations.
The social doctrine of the Catholic Church also offers principles to help us order our economies. It does not propose any particular economic theory. It insists that every economic order be at the service of the human person, human freedom, human flourishing and the family. We are to give a love of preference to the poor, recognizing our solidarity with them. However, this call to solidarity is to be applied through the application of the principle of subsidiarity, rejecting all forms of dehumanizing collectivism, either of the left or the right.
The truths and principles contained within Catholic social doctrine are not merely "religious" positions, in the sense that only religious people need assent to them. They are revealed by the Natural Law and can be known through the exercise of reason. The truths are true for all people and for all time. The Church calls us to offer them as leaven to be worked into the loaf of human culture.
So we will do just that in this series leading to the most important election in our lifetime. Those who have read us both know that we have not always agreed. However, we have chosen to combine our voices at a critical time in U.S. History to do absolutely everything we can do to influence this election!
Yes, I (Keith) said it! I can say it "legally" because Catholic Online is not a non-profit corporation and the current censorship of religious speech does not apply here. However, I also say it because too many Catholics and other Christians have not figured out the consequences we face on November 6, 2012 if we do not properly inform our decision on who we will elect to lead us and vote accordingly. I am getting older and I am tired of the arguments that we must look for the "perfect" candidate. There will never be one.
The Catholic supporters of President Obama have started making phone calls to solicit support for their candidate. OK, that's fine -- calls to prospective voters are part of every campaign season. But you won't believe what is being said about Obama, at least from the call received by a Catholic woman who happens to be the chair of her parish ...
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