"We need to participate for the common good. Sometimes we hear:
a good Catholic is not interested in politics. This is not true:
good Catholics immerse themselves in politics by offering the best of
themselves so that the leader can govern."
- Pope Francis, 9/16/13
The Catholic bishops of the United States are pleased to offer once again to the Catholic faithful Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship, our teaching document on the political responsibility of Catholics. This statement represents our guidance for Catholics in the exercise of their rights and duties as participants in our democracy. We urge our pastors, lay and religious faithful, and all people of good will to use this statement to help form their consciences; to teach those entrusted to their care; to contribute to civil and respectful public dialogue; and to shape political choices in the coming election in light of Catholic teaching. The statement lifts up our dual heritage as both faithful Catholics and American citizens with rights and duties as participants in the civil order. Click here to read the document.
Praying Like a Faithful Citizen
Our action as Faithful Citizens should flow from prayer. When we pray, we experience God and we remember that he is in us and in all people, who are created in his image and have inherent dignity. If we want to truly be faithful citizens, we must know how to come to God in prayer, experience God in ourselves and others, and listen to the ways God is calling us to respond.
Click here to try out all of these ways to pray as a Faithful Citizen as well as other creative ideas you might think of. Then try the ones that work best for you again and again – make them a practice in your daily life so that you can be a just pray-er and a faithful citizen.
A Family Guide to Faithful Citizenship
The most important place to share and reflect on the message of Faithful Citizenship is in our families. While it's always a challenge to use a statement like Faithful Citizenship—so obviously written to an adult audience—within a family context, it's worth the challenge! Civic responsibility starts with the adults in the family. Click here for some ideas to guide your discussion.