November 2, 2012

Letters to the Editor

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Church has responsibility to guide its flock on issues of ultimate importance

I read with interest Glenn Tebbe’s guest column in the Oct. 26 issue of The Criterion about the Church not endorsing political candidates as I have often wondered why the Church does not take more of a stand.

It is true that no candidate exactly matches the teachings of the Church.

However, this should not prevent the Church from providing more specific guidance to her members on issues of great magnitude, such as the sanctity of life and the protection of religious freedom.

The rights of the unborn and the religious freedom of the Catholic Church are under assault as a result of the policies of the federal government and the Affordable Care Act—“Obamacare.”

Numerous Catholic institutions have filed lawsuits against this in order to preserve the right to practice our religion and hold to our beliefs.

Bishop David Ricken of Green Bay wrote last week in a letter to members of his diocese that the Church has a responsibility to “speak out regarding moral issues, especially on those issues that impact the ‘common good.’ ”

We pray each week for elected officials to be people of integrity. We need more than that.

Even if the Church feels that it cannot endorse specific candidates, it does have the responsibility to guide us, her flock, in a more definitive direction regarding these issues of ultimate importance.

- Dr. Stephen O’Neil | Indianapolis

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