BOSTON, OCT. 27, 2010 (Zenit.org).- The bishops of Massachusetts are offering guidance to voters regarding the election of civic leaders.
On Monday, the prelates of the Massachusetts Catholic Conference, including Cardinal Sean O’Malley, archbishop of Boston, Bishop Timothy McDonnell of Springfield, Bishop George Coleman of Fall River, and Bishop Robert McManus of Worcester, published the “Statement on Electing Our Civic Leaders: Hope for a Better Tomorrow.”
“One of the greatest blessings of our American democracy is the opportunity it affords to its citizens to step up and share their vision of a better society,” the statement affirmed.
“Even in these difficult social and economic times,” it continued, “we continue to strive for a community in which all can benefit, and from which no one is excluded.”
The bishops asserted that “because the common good is at stake, it is imperative that we exercise our right and duty to vote.”
Quoting Benedict XVI’s words in an address last May to the Pontifical Council for the Laity, the prelates stated that laypeople should “participate in political life, in a manner consistently in accordance with the Church’s teaching, bringing their well-founded reasons and high ideals into the democratic debate.”
They observed, “Our participation as citizens in the electoral process allows us to propose our vision for this country and about our future as a democracy.”
“Thus voting is above all an opportunity,” the prelates affirmed, “an occasion for contributing our insights as Catholics to the civic discussion nationally and locally, thereby inspiring social change consistent with our country’s foundational values.”