6/5: Scottish Elections: Should Catholics Withhold Vote in Protest at Tyranny? 

A general view of the Scottish Parliament Building 

Scottish Parliament Election 2021 – Putting Human Life and Dignity at the Centre

A letter from the Catholic Bishops of Scotland

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

This election [6 May, 2021] presents us with an opportunity to play our part in putting human life and the inviolable dignity of the human person at the centre of Scotland’s political discourse.

We often see politics through a party prism, which can create a divisive, and occasionally fractious, political environment. Whilst party politics can be an important consideration, particularly in the Scottish Parliament list system, it is individuals who will make up the parliament and form a government; and some of the most important issues, including abortion and assisted suicide, are commonly decided by a conscience, or free, vote. Therefore, it is critical to ascertain candidates’ personal values and opinions and not concentrate solely on party policies.

As Catholics we have a duty: to share the Gospel and to help form the public conscience on key moral issues. It is a duty of both faith and citizenship.  This election is an opportunity to be the effective witness our Baptism calls us to be.

The new parliament and government will be tasked with leading the recovery from the damage wrought by the current health crisis and to tackle the significant impact it has had on many aspects of life including health care, mental health and wellbeing, religious freedom, and care for the poor. It must also build on the positives arising from the Pandemic, including caring for the most vulnerable, and a renewed sense of respect for human life, human dignity, and the value of community.

These are some of the issues you may want to consider in the forthcoming election:

 Beginning and end of life

It is the duty of parliamentarians to uphold the most basic and fundamental human right to life. Elected representatives ought to recognise the existence of human life from the moment of conception and be committed to the protection of human life at every stage. Caring for the unborn and their mothers is a fundamental measure of a caring and compassionate society; a society which puts human dignity at the centre.

We ought to be mindful of a further attempt to legalise assisted suicide in Scotland, likely to happen in this parliament. Legalising assisted suicide or euthanasia suggests that some lives are not worth living, contrary to the Christian belief that every life has equal dignity and value. It is incumbent upon our parliamentarians to show compassion for the sick and dying. This is not achieved by assisted suicide or euthanasia but by ensuring support is provided through caring and attentive politics, including investment in palliative care.

Family and Work

Society relies on the building block of the family to exist and flourish. The love of man and woman in marriage and openness to new life is the basic, fundamental cell upon which every society is built. The wellbeing of Scotland and its future depends on the flourishing of family life and government should respond to this reality with policies creating economic and fiscal advantages for families with children.

The pandemic has placed immeasurable pressure on businesses and many people have lost their livelihood. The state has a duty to sustain business activities by creating conditions which will ensure job opportunities, especially in times of crisis. This must be accompanied by a just wage to provide a dignified livelihood for the worker and their family.

 Poverty, Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery

Sadly, poverty remains a scourge for too many people. The marginalised, the homeless, and the lonely and isolated have been cast further adrift because of the pandemic. And poverty now affects 24% of children in Scotland. We need elected representatives who respect a preferential option for the poor, who are willing to prioritise their need and respect their human dignity.

Our government must also work with the international community to adopt an even more effective strategy against human trafficking and modern slavery, so that in every part of the world, men and women may no longer be used as a means to an end, and that their inviolable dignity will always be respected.

 Environment

The next group of MSPs will be tasked with protecting our neighbours at home and abroad from the poverty and climate crises which continue to rage on. In November Glasgow will play host to the COP26 international climate change summit. We should listen to Pope Francis’ call to ‘hear the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor’ by lifting up the voices of the global south and coming together to rebuild our Common Home in a way that leaves no-one behind. Scotland can also demonstrate global leadership by strengthening its commitment to becoming a carbon neutral country.

 Free speech, free expression, and freedom of thought, conscience and religion

If Scotland is to be a tolerant, open, diverse country then we must be free to discuss and debate ideas, even those which are deemed by some to be controversial. Whilst being mindful of the need to protect citizens from hate, government must not overstep into the realm of unjust restrictions on free speech, free expression and freedom of thought, conscience and religion. This must include, among others, the freedom to express belief in the biological reality of sex and gender.

 Catholic schools

The right of parents to choose a school for their children which corresponds to their own convictions is fundamental. Public authorities have a duty to guarantee this parental right and to ensure the concrete conditions for its exercise. Thus, parliamentarians ought to continue to support an open and diverse state education system which includes Catholic schools.

We pray that this election will put human life and the dignity of the human person at the centre, and that candidates will ensure debate is respectful and courteous.

We urge you to visit the website rcpolitics.org and to use the resources there to help you in your consideration of election issues and to use the tools available to question candidates.

+ Hugh Gilbert, President, Bishop of Aberdeen

+ John Keenan, Vice President, Bishop of Paisley

+ Brian McGee, Episcopal Secretary, Bishop of Argyll and the Isles

+ Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh

+ Joseph Toal, Bishop of Motherwell

+ Stephen Robson, Bishop of Dunkeld

+ William Nolan, Bishop of Galloway

Monsignor Hugh Bradley, Archdiocesan Administrator, Archdiocese of Glasgow. Ends.

Comment: 

Our Lady of Aberdeen pray for us!

I usually leave an outspoken message on my ballot paper since, in conscience, I cannot vote for any of the political parties on offer. All of them support the evil abortion legislation currently on the statute book, and  my reading of the Church’s teaching on abortion convinces me that it is unconscionable for any Catholic to support a system of governance which legislates to allow the State sanctioned murder of the unborn child. 

Additionally, this time there is the issue of the introduction of totalitarian governance under which we have been living for the past year. To reward the politicians responsible for this by voting them back into power, is unthinkable – I want no part in it. What about you? 

If, however, you know of any 100% pro-life party worthy of the votes of Catholics, let us know.  The chances are, such a party would also be keen to fight back against the ongoing lockdown lunacy. Over to thee!

St Andrew, pray for us!  Queen (Saint) Margaret of Scotland, pray for us!
St Ninian, pray for us! St John Ogilvie, pray for us! 

*********************

Vatican Prohibits Confession For Those Intending Euthanasia/Assisted Suicide…

The Vatican asks to clarify the cultural error at the root of euthanasia and assisted suicide, in other words, the concept of “dignified death” and so-called “compassion”.

It does so in this new document titled “The Good Samaritan.” It was published by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

The text is very positive. It states that every medical act must be aimed toward healing, never toward killing the patient. It says that a deterioration in a person’s health does not equal a loss of human dignity. It also promotes palliative cures.

The document also responds to practical problems hospital chaplains face.

For example, it says confession is valid when one repents of one’s sins. That’s why, it says, it is wrong to give the sacrament to people intending to use euthanasia or assisted suicide.

The document asks priests to offer spiritual help to patients who have asked for euthanasia, but not to be present in the final moment, as this could be interpreted as support for the decision.

It says that if a Catholic hospital practices euthanasia, it stops being Catholic.

++SEE COMPLETE DOCUMENT HERE. 

Rome Reports – For Entire Presentation Click Here

Comment:

Is the prohibition on Confession and absolution likely to cause those Catholics intent on ending their own life, to change his/her mind? 

Preaching Social Justice is Un-Biblical…

Comment:

The constant preaching about so-called social justice in parishes is one of the key reasons why thinking Catholics become more open to recognising the crisis in the Church. Eventually, it dawns on them that they just can’t be responsible for every perceived injustice under the sun.  

The Scottish Government electoral registration forms are dropping on doormats this week.  Mine arrived today.  Young people aged 14 may now register to vote although they can’t actually vote until they are 16.  Imagine 16 year olds helping to decide who gets to run the country. Any Party which promises to reduce the price of designer trainers, will be home and dry.  Foreign citizens living in Scotland can also now register to vote, and all of this with an eye to the 2021 Holyrood election – and all to distract voters from the SNP’s dismal record on governance:  click here for more on that. 

The illusion of “social justice” preached by priests and politicians does appeal to the inexperienced and uneducated young.  They are brainwashed, in schools and churches, with the idea that the UK is full of social injustice.  Long-term, of course, this can only be corrected by a restoration of sound teaching in seminaries and teacher training colleges but what can be done in the short-term … for those young people who are not reading this blog?  😀     And if you disagree with the distinction between social justice and justice, let us know. We’re all ears 😀  

Voting in the 2019 General Election

As we prepare to go to the polls in the General Election on 12 December, it is worth reflecting on Church teaching and the principles which should guide us in deciding how to use our vote without violating God’s law.  

Click here to read a guide prepared for American Catholics, which seems to be fairly comprehensive.  I’ve not studied everything on that [EWTN] site, but I have checked out some key topics and I think we will all find it useful, and a source for fruitful discussion.

Below, a video clip from the trial of St Thomas More,  saint and martyr, patron of lawyers and politicians, who has been an inspiration to many, including many who are not Catholics, because of his strong, conscientious insistence that God’s law must always be above any law created by man. 

Comment: 

If the voting guide given in the introduction above still leave you with unanswered questions or doubts,  feel free to ask for clarification on this thread. 

Here, at Catholic Truth, we are apolitical and we discuss politics only in the context of our Catholic duty to be decent members of society, contributing, where possible, to the common good.  Please, therefore engage in discussion in a spirit of respect, bearing in mind that the Church exhorts us to adhere to certain principles but does not dictate that we should support (or not) any particular political party. Our overall aim must be to take care not to offend God in the way we vote; not to support the transgression of His Moral Law.  To this end we pray…

St Thomas More, intercede for us, and for all the politicians participating in the forthcoming election; guide and inspire us in the weeks ahead… Our Lady, Help of Christians, pray for us.