Here are some excerpts from the letter I received:
The Archbishop also encouraged parishes to distribute a booklet (without an acknowledged author) entitled "Voter's Guide for Serious Catholics" which I decided to also enclose with this mailing.First, I could not help but notice the "dig" taken at the Catholic Answers Voter's Guide - (an unnamed author). A few months ago there was a concerted efforted by some parishioners to have the Voter's Guide distributed at the parish (at our own cost) and with the Archbishop's approval but this effort was rebuffed at the time by the pastor. I do not know why he changed his mind and decided to send them out but I am pleased that it was sent out.
How to decide who we should vote for has stirred a lot of discussion.It seems that the only 'stirring' discussion is among those who are trying to rationalize voting for a politician who openly defies the Church's teaching and who adamantly supports the murder of innocent babies.
I encourage you to read and reflect on the above mentioned documents.These are:
USCCB: Faithful Citizenship: A Catholic Call to Political Responsibility
Archbishop Burke: On Our Civic Responsibility for the Common Good
Catholic Answers: Voter's Guide for Serious Catholics
There is much discussion in the letter regarding following one's conscience. He does state that we must make every effort to have a properly informed conscience before one makes a final decision. Extensive quotes from the Catechism follow: Nos. 1782, 1783, 1787, & 1788.
Finally there is this:
Is clear that no Catholic can in good conscience directly choose something that is evil. Normally, in an election we have to make a conscious decision based on a great number of issues. Certainly there is a priority of issues. At the same time we must in conscience decide if a candidate is credible in their positions and committed to carrying out these positions. Then we as a faithful follower of the Lord must decide how our vote can truly further the Kingdom of God here on earth. Then we can be confident that we are in good standing with the Lord and within our faith community, the Church. (the emphasis is mine)The above highlighted sentence causes me some concern. I have learned to be skeptical of what is stated - I am not comfortable with what is now being said.
I hope and pray that this "Voter Information Night" is a period of prayerful reflection and authentic catechesis based on the teaching which Archbishop Burke provided and of which he reminds us to follow. I hope and pray it does not turn out to be a forum for confirming moral relativism and malformed consciences which would permit professed Catholics to reject the hierarchy of issues and thus work against the common good.
I hope I can go...I'll need a dispensation from class.