In This Week’s Lansing Update:
- Form Your Conscience and Vote Your Values on November 6
- Detroit Archbishop Allen Vigneron Speaks At Religious Freedom Rally
- USCCB Defense of Marriage Chair Decries Latest DOMA Ruling
The November 6 general election is less than two weeks away. In order to help prepare Catholics, MCC has created an election web page that includes helpful resources and the following FOCUS publications:
- The Issues, the Candidates and Your Vote 2012 encourages thoughtful evaluation of candidates based on their positions on issues important to the Church.
- Forming Consciences for Religious Liberty identifies the first amendment right to religious liberty as a primary issue and introduces the U.S. bishops’ document Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship, which addresses how to keep Catholic social teaching in mind this election.
- 2012 Statewide Ballot Proposals provides a detailed look at the six statewide ballot proposals, including language, supporters, opponents, and arguments for each side. This FOCUS also explains why MCC opposes Proposal 5, the 2/3 tax proposal.
Most Reverend Alexander Sample, Bishop of the Diocese of Marquette, has also been writing in the U.P. Catholic newspaper a series of columns called “A Consequential Election”, which encourages Catholics to reflect upon the election through the lens of Catholic social teaching. Bishop Sample’s first column relates the election to issues of social justice and the preferential option for the poor; his second, the sacredness of human life; his third, the institution of marriage and the health of the family; and his fourth, religious liberty and the weighing of issues when voting this November. Most Reverend Earl Boyea, Bishop of the Diocese of Lansing, has also written a column on faithful citizenship and the importance of voting for Catholics to read and reflect upon.
On Saturday, October 20, the third round of Stand Up for Religious Freedom Rallies were held all over the country, including in 11 locations around the state of Michigan. At the Dearborn City Hall, Archbishop Vigneron spoke against the federal Health and Human Services mandate. To hear his speech, visit the Archdiocese of Detroit's webpage and click on the Respect Life tab. Download his speech and learn more about why the Church is speaking out against the mandate. For more information about the HHS mandate and MCC’s response, visit our website.
On October 18, the U.S. Court of Appeals upheld a decision by the U.S. District Court that the third section of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defines marriage for the purposes of federal law as the union between one man and one woman, is unconstitutional. The Defense of Marriage Act was passed with bi-partisan support and signed by President Clinton in 1996. Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, the chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage, issued this statement of disappointment after hearing the ruling:
"The recognition that marriage is and can only be the union of one man and one woman is grounded in our nature, being clear from the very way our bodies are designed. This recognition obliges our consciences and laws. It is a matter of basic rights—the right of every child to be welcomed and raised, as far as possible, by his or her mother and father together in a stable home. Marriage is the only institution whereby a man and a woman unite for life and are united to any child born from their union. The public good demands that the unique meaning and purpose of marriage be respected in law and society, not rejected as beyond the constitutional pale. Redefining marriage never upholds the equal dignity of individuals because it contradicts basic human rights. The ruling yesterday is unjust and a great disappointment."