More change. We must clearly understand and willingly share the fullness of Catholic teaching with those we encounter in our everyday lives. The depth and breadth of Catholic teaching, rooted in Sacred Scripture, Tradition and natural human reason, is a great gift from God and a resource available to us all. Unfortunately, Church teaching regarding the most vulnerable and most weak has been misrepresented time and again. The Church’s position (regardless of what any individual member of the Church might assert) is, and always has been, clear: life starts at the moment of conception and a direct abortion is, in any circumstance, an intrinsic moral evil. It would be difficult, indeed quite rare, to find an issue that is proportionate in both importance and gravity to the issue of abortion, which takes the lives of thousands of precious human beings each day in our country. On Election Day, every issue deserves our prudent deliberation, but this year we must not hesitate to identify an issue which is intrinsically and undeniably evil and overwhelming in its human cost. Change is needed regarding the fundamental issue — respect for the right to life - a change that I endorse
Even more change should occur. I would like to change the misconception that forming one’s conscience based on the aforementioned teaching of the Church, which recognizes that some issues carry more moral weight than others, and then voting accordingly, somehow makes one a “single issue voter.” This way of thinking is flawed, and it is simply not true. ALL issues, not one single issue, drive Catholics to the polls on Election Day. Furthermore, we must reject the idea that abortion is solely a “Catholic” issue. Certainly, Catholics are vocal about protecting life in all stages — the fight against the death penalty is another example of defending human life. Abortion, however, is an issue which is not only intrinsically immoral, but also unjust. In fact, it is the most fundamental injustice imaginable. An entire class of human beings is denied the most basic right of all: the right to life. Accepting the concept of a “right” to “choose” to kill an innocent unborn child requires a gross rejection of the dignity of the human person. A change in our understanding this truth is badly needed: a change that I endorse.
I am very happy to add my own bishop, Bishop Paul Loverde, to the growing list of bishops who have spoken out about the primacy of the right to life in the upcoming election. You can read his full letter here.