Catholics are called to participate in promoting the common good and, as far as possible, to take an active part in public life. Indeed, “by fulfilling their civic duties, guided by a Christian conscience, in conformity with its values, the lay faithful exercise their proper task of infusing the temporal order with Christian values.” (Gaudium et Spes, #36)
“The consequence of this fundamental teaching of the Second Vatican Council is that the lay faithful are never to relinquish their participation in public life.” (Doctrinal Note on Some Questions Regarding the Participation of Catholics in Political Life, #1)
To fulfill this calling, Catholics must be informed, active, and responsible participants in the political process. They must be knowledgeable about the political process and have a grasp of the moral dimensions of issues facing society. To do so, they need to understand the role of government in society, to be aware of their political rights as citizens, and to know how to influence public policy so that they may work within the political structure to effect change. They need to know about current social issues, to understand the Church’s teachings about their moral dimensions, to form their consciences in light of their faith, and to act out of their moral convictions.
Read the Archdiocese of St. Louis Political Process Guidelines for Parishes, Schools, and Agencies
Resources for Priests on Preaching and Catechesis During Election Season (pdf)
Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship: A Call to Political Responsibility from the Catholic Bishops of the United States with Introductory Note
Viewing Election Issues through a Lens of Faith: columns from Archbishop Robert J Carlson published in the St. Louis Review
Also available in Spanish: Cómo ver los temas de las elecciones a través del Lente de la Fe
Stay informed on important issues
With a number of hot topic issues at the forefront in our culture, it is important that Catholics have an understanding of the Church's position on these issues. On this page you will find links to resources to help you stay informed.
Religious Liberty & the HHS Mandate
Same-Sex Attraction & Marriage
Peace & Justice
Find more information from the USCCB at http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/index.cfm