Compare Catholicism’s Stance on Current Political Issues with Your Own

Where do you stand on the following issues that make up the eight points in this article?  Where do you think the Church stands on these issues?

  1. Violations of Conscience and Religious Freedom (Ex:  Forcing us to pay for contraceptives, abortion, etc.)
  2. Centralized Planning and Socialism
  3. Manipulation of the Economy and the Poor (Ex:  Excessive government welfare programs keep the poor dependent on government, out of work and separated from the opportunity for redemption.)
  4. Abortion
  5. Euthanasia
  6. Embryonic Stem Cell Research
  7. Human Cloning
  8. Same-Sex Marriage

Catholicism rejects all of these.   The Catholic Church’s opposition to each of these issues is summarized below for absolute clarity.  These eight are not listed in order of importance.

Excerpts of all issues are taken from the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC and section number):

  1. Violations of Conscience and Religious Freedom
    CCC 1782     Man has the right to act in conscience and in freedom so as personally to make moral decisions. “He must not be forced to act contrary to his conscience. Nor must he be prevented from acting according to his conscience, especially in religious matters.”
    CCC 1907     First, the common good presupposes respect for the person
    as such. In the name of the common good, public authorities are bound
    to respect the fundamental and inalienable rights of the human person.
    Society should permit each of its members to fulfill his vocation. In
    particular, the common good resides in the conditions for the exercise of the natural freedoms indispensable for the development of the human vocation, such as “the right to act according to a sound norm of conscience and to safeguard . . . privacy, and rightful freedom also in matters of religion.”
    CCC 2107     “If because of the circumstances
    of a particular people special civil recognition is given to one
    religious community in the constitutional organization of a state, the
    right of all citizens and religious communities to religious freedom
    must be recognized and respected as well.”
    CCC 2108     The right to religious liberty is neither a moral license to adhere to error, nor a supposed right to error,
    but rather a natural right of the human person to civil liberty, i.e., immunity, within just limits, from external constraint in religious matters by political authorities. This natural right ought to be acknowledged in the juridical order of society in such a way that it constitutes a civil right.”
    CCC 2211     The political community has a duty to honor the family, to assist it, and to ensure especially:- the freedom to establish a family, have children, and bring them up in keeping with the family’s own moral and religious convictions;- the protection of the stability of the marriage bond and the institution of the family;- the freedom to profess one’s faith, to hand it on, and raise one’s children in it, with the necessary means and institutions;- the right to private property, to free enterprise, to obtain work and housing, and the right to emigrate…”
  2. Centralized Planning and Socialism
    CCC 1883     Socialization also presents dangers. Excessive intervention by the state can threaten personal freedom and initiative. The teaching of the Church has elaborated the principle of subsidiarity, according to which “a community of a higher order should not interfere in the internal life of a community of a lower order, depriving the latter of its functions, but rather should support it in case of need and help to co-ordinate its activity with the activities of the rest of society, always with a view to the common good.”
    CCC 1885    The principle of subsidiarity is opposed to all forms of collectivism…
    CCC 2425    The Church has rejected the totalitarian and atheistic ideologies associated in modern times with “communism” or “socialism.” …Regulating the economy solely by centralized planning perverts the basis of social bonds…
    CCC 2499     Moral judgment must condemn the plague of totalitarian states which systematically falsify the truth, exercise political control of opinion through the media, manipulate defendants and witnesses at public trials, and imagine that they secure their tyranny by strangling and repressing everything they consider “thought crimes.”
  3. Manipulation of the Economy and the Poor                                       CCC 2427     Human work proceeds directly from persons created in the image of God and called to prolong the work of creation by subduing the earth, both with and for one another.  Hence work is a duty: “If any one will not work, let him not eat.” Work honors the Creator’s gifts and the talents received from him. It can also be redemptive. By enduring the hardship of work in union with Jesus, the carpenter of Nazareth and the one crucified on Calvary, man collaborates in a certain fashion with the Son of God in his redemptive work. He shows himself to be a disciple of Christ by carrying the cross, daily, in the work he is called to accomplish.  Work can be a means of sanctification and a way of animating earthly realities with the Spirit of Christ.                                                                                                                   CCC 2444     “The Church’s love for the poor . . . is a part of
    her constant tradition.” This love is inspired by the Gospel of the
    Beatitudes, of the poverty of Jesus, and of his concern for the poor. Love for the poor is even one of the motives for the duty of working so as to “be able to give to those in need.”  It extends not only to material poverty but also to the many forms of cultural and religious poverty.
  4. Abortion
    CCC 2270     Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception…
    CCC 2271     Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable…
  5. Euthanasia
    CCC 2277     Whatever its motives and means, direct euthanasia consists in putting an end to the lives of handicapped, sick, or dying persons. It is morally unacceptable.  Thus an act or omission which, of itself or by intention, causes death in order to eliminate suffering constitutes a murder gravely contrary to the dignity of the human person and to the respect due to the living God, his Creator. The error of judgment into which one can fall in good faith does not change the nature of this murderous act, which must always be forbidden and excluded.
  6. Embryonic Stem Cell Research
    CCC 2273     The inalienable right to life of every innocent human individual is a constitutive element of a civil society and its legislation…
    CCC 2274     Since it must be treated from conception as a person, the embryo must be defended in its integrity, cared for, and healed, as far as possible, like any other human being.
    CCC 2275     …”It is immoral to produce human embryos intended for exploitation as disposable biological material.”
    “Certain attempts to influence chromosomic or genetic inheritance are not therapeutic but are aimed at producing human beings selected according to sex or other predetermined qualities.  Such manipulations are contrary to the personal dignity of the human being and his integrity and identity” which are unique and unrepeatable.
  7. Human Cloning
    CCC 2273
    CCC 2274
    CCC 2275
  8. Same-Sex Marriage
    CCC 2357     …Under no circumstances can they (homosexual acts) be approved.
    CCC 2358     They (homosexual persons) must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity…
    CCC 2359     Homosexual persons are called to chastity… they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.
    CCC 2360     Sexuality is ordered to the conjugal love of man and woman. In marriage the physical intimacy of the spouses becomes a sign and pledge of spiritual communion…

O Holy Spirit, strengthen us to defend all that is holy.

Peter L. Hodges Sr.

3 responses to “Compare Catholicism’s Stance on Current Political Issues with Your Own

  1. Stuart Bintner

    This is my first visit to the site. I strikes me more as of a series of political screeds rather than a serious examination of issues and Catholic thought. For example, several do not seem to know the definition of “socialism.”

  2. While I agree with you on the moral teachings you are deliberately under-representing the Church’s teachings on social justice issues. For example you would make us think the Paul Ryan is an Orthodox Catholic when in fact his 2012 budget was condemned by the USCCB. Following moral teachings and deliberately disregarding social justice makes him as much a cafeteria Catholic as Nancy Pelosi in the grand scheme of things. The church is neither Republican or Democrat.