.- The Confraternity of Catholic Clergy has released a non-partisan voting guide for Catholics in the form of a free mobile device app.
“With Election Day soon approaching, it is imperative that the lay faithful take their right to vote seriously,” Fr. John Trigilio, Jr., president of the San Diego-based fraternity, said Oct. 4.
“This Voting Guide is totally non-partisan. It neither favors nor disavows any political party or candidate. What it does is present gospel values and moral principles of the natural moral law to enable the Catholic voter to evaluate any candidate, issue or pending legislation.”
The guide specifically focuses on six issues: right to life, religious liberty, sanctity of marriage, private property, access to necessary goods and war.
“The right to life and religious liberty are the two most sacred inalienable rights human beings possess from their Creator and no state or federal government can take it away,” Fr. Trigilio said. “Voters must take into consideration politicians’ positions on life and liberty and not just presume their own personal stand is sufficient.”
The app includes a reflection on Catholic duties in the voting booth. It draws on the 2011 U.S. bishops’ conference letter “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship” and a 2004 letter from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith written by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger before his election as Pope Benedict XVI.
A Catholic cannot vote for a candidate who supports intrinsic evils if the voter intends to support those acts, the app says. Likewise, a conscientious voter may vote for candidates less likely to advance morally flawed positions or to advance other societal goods only when all candidates hold a position in favor of an intrinsic evil.
Fr. Trigilio said the confraternity hopes that Catholics will use the app for every election and will use it to keep current on pending legislation which “could impact our most cherished values.”
The Confraternity of Catholic Clergy has over 500 U.S. priests and deacons as members, with fellow confraternities in Australia and the U.K.