UP Catholic 09 16 2016 E Edition Page 3

I n my last message, we reflected on four fundamental principles to guide our discernment about voting: the dignity of the human person, the common good, subsidiar- ity and solidarity. In this message we will reflect on our responsibility and the government's responsibility to do good. As I said in the last message, I am not telling you how to vote, nor am I sup- porting any political party or candidate. Rather, I am speak- ing to moral prin- ciples that we are called to embrace, and it is your respon- sibility to consider prayerfully how to vote in light of these principles. PROMOTE THE COMMON GOOD OF SOCIETY There are many areas of public life that we should address to promote the good of society. These include, but are not limited to the following: striving to overcome poverty, hunger and disease, and promoting peace, educa- tion, health care, and employment. It is good to provide the infrastructure that society needs, such as clean water, roads, bridges, etc. We should work to- ward immigration reform, the promo- tion of strong families founded on the marriage of one man and one woman and the protection of the environment. We should safeguard fundamental human rights such as the right to life, religious liberty, the freedom of conscience, the freedom of speech and the rights of workers. We should foster agriculture, business and promote entrepreneurship. PRUDENTIAL DELIBERATION When it comes to promoting the good of society, there is room for differing opinions on the best way to achieve the good. Thus, we need to ex- amine the candidates' differing policy proposals to achieve these goods and make a prudential decision on which is the best proposal. The virtue of prudence helps us to deliberate about the means to achieve these good ends. While there is room for disagreement, there are still some non-negotiable pa- rameters. For example, we may never choose to do something evil in order to achieve a good end. The end does not justify the means. For instance, it is laudable to strive to overcome disease. However, we ought not to destroy human embryos in order to find cures for diseases. We will talk more about avoiding evil in the next message. In addition to avoiding evil, our prudential deliberation should eval- uate policy proposals in light of the four principles that we considered in the last message. Let us examine two of the goods that we should promote in this way, namely health care, and overcoming poverty. Time and space prevent me from addressing all the issues, but I hope that these examples will serve as a guide for your reasoning about the others. HEALTH CARE It promotes the common good for quality, affordable health care to be available, yet there is room for dis- agreement on the best way to do this. Each of us needs to examine the candi- dates' policies and determine which is better. In light of the principles of sub- sidiarity and solidarity, there is a pref- erence for private initiative and local levels of government in the provision of health care. However, higher levels of government still have responsibility if it cannot be adequately provided at a local level. Moreover, the provision of health care must safeguard the dig- nity of the human person and protect fundamental human rights such as the rights to life, religious liberty and freedom of conscience. POVERTY, FAMILIES AND THE ECONOMY It serves the common good to over- come poverty. Yet it is a complex mat- ter that does not admit of an easy solu- tion. Many factors are involved. There is a strong correlation between the dissolution of families and the increase of poverty. Thus, to combat poverty it is important to strengthen families and address the cultural and economic factors that undermine family stability (cf., Faithful Citizenship, 75). Moreover, it is important to grow the economy to overcome poverty. Strong agriculture, business and entrepre- neurship, provide food, the material things we need and create jobs. The Catechism of the Catholic Church in- dicates that the primary responsibility for the economy rests with individuals and other groups in society and not the state or government (CCC, 2431). However, the state or government does have role in the economy, which must be exercised in accord with the principles of subsidiarity and solidar- ity, as the Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church states: In order to respect both of these fundamental principles, the State's intervention in the economic environment must be neither invasive nor absent, but commen- surate with society's real needs. The State has a duty to sustain business activities by creating conditions which will ensure job opportu- nities, by stimulating those activities where they are lacking or by supporting them in moments of crisis. The State has the further right to intervene when particular monopolies create delays or obsta- cles to development. In addition to the tasks of harmonizing and guiding development, in exceptional circum- stances the State can also exercise a substitute function. The fundamental task of the State in economic matters is that of determining an appropriate juridical framework for regulat- ing economic affairs, in order to safeguard the prerequisites of a free economy, which presumes a certain equality between the parties, such that one party would not be so powerful as practically to reduce the other to subservi- ence. Economic activity, above all in a free market context, cannot be conducted in an institutional, juridical or political vacuum. On the contrary, it presupposes sure guarantees of individual freedom and private property, as well as a stable currency and efficient public services. To fulfill this task, the State must adopt suitable legislation but at the same time it must direct economic and social policies in such a way that it does not become abusively involved in the various market activities, the carrying out of which is and must remain free of authoritarian - or worse, totalitarian - superstruc- tures and constraints. (CSDC, 351-352. The internal citations are from John Paul II, Centesimus Annus, 15 and 48) Finally to combat poverty, welfare should not create dependency on the system but be aimed at stimulating personal responsibility and initiative, helping people to rise out of poverty through education and gaining nec- essary skills and work. Moreover, there should be assistance available for those who are disabled and cannot work (cf. Faithful Citizenship, 75). While striving to overcome poverty is non-negotiable, there is room for de- bate as to the best way to achieve this goal. Once again, we need to evaluate a candidate's policies to overcome pov- erty in light of the common good, the dignity of the human person and the principles of subsidiarity and solidar- ity, and make a judgment as to which policies are the best. COMPLETE AGREEMENT WITH A CANDIDATE IS UNLIKELY It is unlikely that we will completely agree with all a candidate's policies to do good. Thus, in choosing for whom to vote, we need to make a judgment about which candidate for office over- all has the best policies for doing good. However, there is one more important factor that we must examine. We and the government must never do evil, and we will reflect on this topic in the next message. www.upcatholic.org THE U.P. CATHOLIC September 16, 2016 3 (USPS 916-360 ISSN 10634525) THE U.P. CATHOLIC The Newspaper of the Diocese of Marquette Publisher: Most Rev. John F. Doerfler Editor: John Fee Assistant Editor: Jamie Carter Advertising Manager: Deacon Stephen Gretzinger Administrative Assistant: Sheila Wickenheiser Direct all news, correspondence and changes of address to: 1004 Harbor Hills Drive, Marquette, MI 49855-8851. Postal authorities direct Form 3579 to: 1004 Harbor Hills Dr., Marquette, MI 49855. The U.P. CATHOLIC is the official publication of the Diocese of Marquette. All notices and regulations, appointments, assignments, etc., issued under the caption 'Official' are to be regarded as official communications of the Diocese of Marquette. Opinion columns, letters to the editor and advertisements that appear in this publication do not necessarily reflect the opinions held by The U.P. Catholic or the Diocese of Marquette. The diocese is prohibited from endorsing candidates for public office. Office of Publication: 1004 Harbor Hills Dr., Marquette, Michigan. Periodical postage paid at Marquette, Michigan, 49855 and at additional entry office. Published semimonthly except during January, June, July, August, September, and November. The U.P. Catholic is provided to all registered U.P. parishioners. The cost for subscribers who are not registered members of a parish in the Marquette Diocese is $25/year. Advertising is $14.86/col inch unless specified otherwise. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to The U.P. Catholic, 1004 Harbor Hills Drive, Marquette, MI 49855-8851. FOR CHANGE OF ADDRESS or SUBSCRIPTION QUESTIONS CALL (906) 227-9104 Telephone: (906) 227-9131 Toll Free: 1-800-562-9745 (ext. 131) FAX: (906) 225-0437 ADVERTISING Toll-Free: (866) 452-5112 E-Mail: Editorial - editor@dioceseofmarquette.org Advertising - upc@new.rr.com JOY OF THE GOSPEL Bishop John Doerfler Voter's guide part two: Do good IT IS UNLIKELY THAT WE WILL COMPLETELY AGREE WITH ALL A CANDIDATE'S POLICIES TO DO GOOD. THUS, IN CHOOSING FOR WHOM TO VOTE, WE NEED TO MAKE A JUDGMENT ABOUT WHICH CANDIDATE FOR OFFICE OVERALL ALL HAS THE BEST POLICIES FOR DOING GOOD.

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