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Catholic Teaching on Voting for Pro-Abortion Candidates
Part 15

Do you say you are a Catholic, that you are living your Catholic faith, but will vote for an openly pro-abortion candidate? When there is a clear pro-life alternative? As a Catholic, have you considered how the lives of millions of unborn children will be decided by your vote? Are you for murder, which abortion is?

I am sure you want to live your Catholic faith, to be a faithful and holy Christian, to be a true follower of Jesus. But then you need to follow him. And Jesus speaks through the authentic teaching of our Catholic Church. What part of "abortion is a grievous sin" and "active support for the culture of death is a grievous wrong" do you not understand?

You say you are a Catholic. Please make sure it is authentic, and not a sham.

God bless.


Phoenix Bishop Publishes "Catholics in the Public Square" in Time for the Election Season

By Kathleen Gilbert

PHOENIX, AZ, October 9, 2008 ( - Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix has published the second edition of his "Catholics in the Public Square," a booklet available nationwide outlining the privilege and duty of Catholics to engage the social and political sphere in light of their Catholic faith.

The booklet, part of the Shepherd's Voice series and published by Basilica Press, was originally written in 2006. Parishes througout the diocese of Phoenix will receive over 100,000 copies of the booklet, including 7,500 Spanish copies.

In the booklet, Bishop Olmsted helps lay Catholics recognize their unique call to holiness in the public forum. He warns that the infamous, "'I am a Catholic but...' syndrome" cannot interfere with the integrity of life lived according to faith.

"If one's faith does not impact on one's whole life, including one's political and social responsibilities," writes the bishop, "then it is not authentic faith; it is a sham, a counterfeit."

Bishop Olmsted also addresses the areas of political discussion that are non-negotiable for Catholics, and reminds the faithful of how cooperation with grave evils such as abortion can cause Catholics to be banned from Holy Communion.

"If a politician is actively supporting and furthering the culture of death, he is not only causing scandal; he is sinning," writes the bishop.

In an interview with ZENIT about the booklet, Bishop Olmsted answered the question, "Why is the Catholic voice struggling to make itself heard in the public square?"

He answered, "With the influence of modernity and Enlightenment philosophies, many voices in secular society today contend that religion is pure subjectivism and has a role only in people's private lives.

"If we let our faith impact on the way we practice a profession, engage the culture, or become involved in political struggles," said Olmsted, "then we are accused of imposing our faith on others. ... These contentions are often based on false understandings of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which in fact protects the practice of religion from coercion by the state, rather than limiting the religious voice."

When asked how this attitude could affect the faith of practicing Catholics, Olmsted responded by quoting St. James: "Faith without works is dead."

"When Catholics are afraid to express their beliefs in public, they begin to travel down the path that divides faith from life. Faith begins to be purely spiritual, with no impact on other dimension of their lives.

"Then, it becomes impossible to live a life of integrity. For faith needs to express itself, as Jesus makes clear. ...

"Notice how often Jesus tells his followers: 'Be not afraid,'" said the bishop. "It takes both courage and wisdom to engage our culture and be involved in the public square. We are called to exercise both faith and reason, being careful to inform our conscience on the basis of objective truth."

The Phoenix bishop has earned a solid reputation since his appointment in 2004 for his leadership in advocating pro-life and pro-family values.

Bishop Olmsted's booklet is currently available for purchase online.

See Related articles:

Arizona Bishop Calls Catholics to Uphold Marriage in November Vote

New Phoenix Bishop Shows Impressive Leadership - Dares to Directly Address Homosexuality

"For to me life is Christ, and death is gain." (Phil 1:21)

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