Looking at politics through the lens of faith in election year 2004
Published: January 2, 2004
WASHINGTON (CNS) -- As a new presidential election year begins, politicians of all ideological stripes have their eyes firmly fixed on the big prize. But what do the U.S. Catholic bishops see as the necessary focus for the 2004 elections, as the campaign officially kicks off Jan. 19 with the Iowa caucuses? "As Catholics, the election and the policy choices that follow it call us to recommit ourselves to carry the values of the Gospel and church teaching into the public square," the bishops' Administrative Committee said in "Faithful Citizenship: A Catholic Call to Political Responsibility." "As citizens and residents of the United States, we have the duty to participate now and in the future in the debates and choices over the values, vision and leaders that will guide our nation," the bishops added in the 8,500-word document designed to offer a blueprint for electoral decisions based on Catholic social teaching. A similar document has been issued before every presidential election for the last 28 years. But this year, the bishops hope that the ideas in "Faithful Citizenship" will make new inroads at the parish level, reaching more Catholics in the pews through special resource kits, workshops for priests and deacons and more local sponsorship of nonpartisan candidate forums and voter registration drives.
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