Man, can I be obsessive.
I mean, I tend to think about things over and over sometimes. Right now, I’m definitely obsessive about the presidential election. My wife in fact has become so worried about me following news on my Twitter and Facebook accounts (not to mention CNN and FOX on the internet and television) that she reminds me every night that I really need to get a hobby – one that isn’t stressful.
But what can I say? This stuff is important! And I’m not the only one who believes so – our Church has been saying this for some time:
All citizens ought to be aware of their right and duty to promote the common good by casting their votes. The church praises and esteems those who devote themselves to the public good and who take upon themselves the burdens of public office in order to be of service. (Gaudium et Spes (“The Church in the Modern World”), Vatican II, 1965, #75.)
Now I know politics can be pretty, well, ‘dirty.’ It’s hard sometimes to believe what these men or women have to say. But I do know some people in public service – who approach their service as just that – public service, and they are good people.
Of course there are people in elected office who are crooks, but can you name one area of your life or in the job sector where there aren’t people who are crooks? Or can we say that if everything we said was under a microscope that people couldn’t point out areas where we’ve been inconsistent? Are we really that full of ourselves?
Like every other aspect of our lives, politics has the potential to be an opportunity to love. Yes, love.
In fact, Pope Francis has said that, “Politics, according to the Social Doctrine of the Church, is one of the highest forms of charity, because it serves the common good.”
That’s right! Politics can be one of the HIGHEST FORMS of charity, of love! Why? Because it’s about serving our fellow man so every person, born and unborn, can fulfill their God-given potential to be who God has called them to be! Politics can be about bringing people together, building bridges and ensuring that our laws match God’s desires for his people.
Yet today, I am worried. I am obsessed. Because I see a country, and leaders of both parties that are worried about dividing, rather than loving. And so I’m worried about the future of this country and election and I wonder what’s my role it in all?
Then I remember, before all else, as St. Giana Molla said, ‘the disciple kneels down to pray.’ So would you join me in prayer for this nation? Would you pray with me that a candidate would arise that doesn’t divide, that doesn’t devalue human life from the womb to the tomb?
In particular, I want to invite you as I often do, to turn to the Virgin Mary to pray for our country. She helps me often, like a good mother, to be a little less obsessive. She always takes me to her Son where I find peace. I mean, I do often just try to go straight to Jesus, but sometimes I can’t connect. But somehow, I always “feel” as if Mary is there. I don’t think that’s by accident, I think that in God’s plan of salvation, somehow that’s by design.
So let me leave you with this: I do believe God is in control. He’s in control of our lives and even this election. We don’t have to obsess. With me though, please pray, and please act to elect a candidate who is willing to love. Then maybe I can make my wife happy by finding another hobby.