Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Dear Parish Family,
I have been asked about Issue 1 which will be decided in a special election on August 8th. The Church is careful not to endorse candidates for public office but for the sake of the common good will take stances based on the teachings of Christ and His Church.
“Issue 1 will increase the threshold required for any proposed amendment to the Constitution of Ohio from a simple majority vote to at least a 60 percent majority vote in order to pass. In response to Issue 1, the Bishops of Ohio have taken this position: ‘The Bishops of Ohio do not have a position on Issue 1 as it does not have moral content. However, as ‘responsible citizenship is a virtue, and participation in political life is a moral obligation’ (Faithful Citizenship, No. 13), the bishops urge Catholics in Ohio to register and vote in the special election”.
In most cases concerning issues with no moral content the Church invites her members to use prudential judgment to seek the common good with their decision.
Bishop Thomas has issued a statement regarding Issue 1 which can help guide and inform our decision making: “A ‘yes’ vote on Issue 1 will make it more difficult to pass any future amendment to the Constitution of Ohio, including this November’s ballot initiative seeking an abortion constitutional amendment that expands and enshrines abortion at the expense of protections of preborn children and women. A ‘no’ vote on Issue 1 will maintain the current threshold, making it easier to pass an amendment to Ohio’s constitution, including the one coming this November on the abortion expansion amendment”.
Bishop Thomas continues: “Parishes are welcome to encourage their parishioners, in whatever manner deemed appropriate, to vote ‘yes’ in support of the proposed change to the Constitution. A 60 percent majority would more accurately reflect the will of the people rather than a simple majority. Keeping in mind that one of the direct consequences of the August Special Election vote will be the possibility of abortion and the removal of parental rights being enshrined into Ohio law.”
The deciding of Issue 1 will undoubtedly have an effect on the chance of the passage of the dangerous and radical November ballot initiative one way or another. A ‘yes’ vote will raise the threshold to help protect against this and other possible future dangerous initiatives offensive to the common good funded by powerful special interests. Please take this guidance into careful prayerful consideration and pray that life may be protected, especially at its most vulnerable stages.