I posted this question on the Faith and Finance forum but I’m not getting much guidance except for one person who showed me the applicable catechism chapter which didn’t fully address my dilemma.
Anyway, I thought I’d try here too to get some input.
Here is the original thread.
Here is my original post there.
I don’t know if this is the right forum to post this but here goes.
For the past two years, I have worked a seasonal job at a state park gift shop that has lottery.
Until I worked there, I had never bought a Powerball ticket and didn’t even know what scratch offs were. I had, of course, heard of gambling addiction but never experienced it.
I soon discovered it was real and there were people and usually the ones who could least afford it who would buy $100 worth of scratch offs.
I felt very uncomfortable selling them tickets. I had no problem with the person who would buy the occasional ticket but those who would spend money they really needed for everyday expenses.
I even discovered the attraction myself. I would get bored during slow periods and buy scratch offs, win a couple bucks and drop another $10 trying to duplicate the winnings.
The people who are gambling addicts really act like drug addicts. They will push in front of the line of customers and DEMAND you cash their ticket, sell them another one, whatever. They are agitated and obnoxious.
I told anyone who would listen that I felt like a drug pusher slinging oxys on the street. Nobody cared. I had learned the complicated accounting procedure to do the closing which wasn’t easy because of having to separate lottery sales from regular sales.
I am in a training program now to learn new skills so I don’t have to depend on seasonal work. I have been collecting UE while on this program.
The state park called me in for an interview. I was so vocal about my opposition to the lottery that I really didn’t think they’d even offer me the job but they did.
Now, I stand to lose my UE for five weeks if I turn the job down unless I can state that there is a moral objection.
So what is the Catholic Church’s stance on gambling? As I said, I don’t personally see a problem with the average person buying a ticket now and then. But there is that minority who have an obvious problem.
I have my own personal reservations about it but is there official Church policy on this? I mean Catholics do sponsor Bingo games.
I’ve been thinking and praying a lot about this a lot since I posted that.
Am I just rationalizing the fact I don’t want to work there (for other reasons like it’s horrible) or do I really have a moral objection to being a part of the gambling industry? Sure, the obnoxious behavior of the gambling addict aggravates me but do I truly care whether they blow all their money on the lottery or not. I should care, I know, but I’m not sure I do.
I guess that’s why I was hoping the Church had an official stance. To make my life easier. But apparently, they don’t.