November 5-6, 2016

Friends, 

I preached a few weeks ago about my appreciating the separation of Church and State that was heralded by our ancestors. But I don't think that carries over to politics and religion. We are all human and therefore deeply affected by religious background and our political affiliations. I believe that is true all the way to, and including, the Supreme Court who claims to be objective. I don't want to belong to a faith tradition that does not affect my decision making (including how I vote). 

I read in the Archdiocesan Catholic newspaper (The Pilot) 2 weeks ago the remarks of the Catholic Bishop of Denver, Samuel Aquila, as he encouraged Catholics to vote along the lines of the issues that are at the root of Catholic teaching. The following week I read the article in the Globe written by Thomas Farragher, a “practicing Catholic” who did not appreciate the fact that Bishop Aquila's article was reprinted in his Church Bulletin because “if you read between the lines the message was unmistakable.” 

There are Catholics who believe there are many issues that are at the heart of Catholic teaching including the poor, immigration, abortion, capital punishment, same-sex marriage, minimum wage, freedom of religion, physician-assisted suicide, racism, war, global warming, domestic violence, etc. They are all “right to life” issues. 

I am also a “practicing Catholic” and I will be voting on November 8th. The presidential and vice-presidential race is primary. There will be many other contests across the country as well as ballot questions. Many people no longer look forward to “election day” and either dread standing in line or just decide not to exercise their right to vote. I hear many wonderful people say that they will vote for the “lesser of two evils.” I am not among them. I have a favored candidate in the presidential race but even if I did not, I would vote for the party that most identifies with my values and the issues I believe are primary in our country and our world. 

It has been a long campaign and I too will breathe a sigh of relief when the ballots have been counted. 

One of the blessings of a democracy such as ours, is the respect we have for the will of the American people. We have a process (which continues to evolve) that has worked well since the election of George Washington in 1789. 

We don't have people taking to the streets in protest and we have been so proud of our ability to smoothly transition from one administration to the next. I am apprehensive about the repercussions of this election, as I have never been before. 

Our democracy has been a source of pride in the world and we have always tried to lead by example. 

As important as the results of November 8th will be, the repercussions on November 9th will be as telling. God Bless America (and every other country in the world!) 

Enjoy Life! 
Fr Coyne

 

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