'Study, pray, vote,' Pope tells Americans ahead of elections


ABOARD THE PAPAL PLANE (Reuters) - Pope Francis on Sunday advised U.S. Catholics who feel they are torn between two imperfect candidates for president to study and pray before they vote and to make sure to follow their conscience.

During his traditional, freewheeling in-flight news conference with reporters on the plane returning from Azerbaijan, Francis was asked how he would counsel American faithful and what wisdom they should keep in mind.

“You have asked me a question that describes a difficult choice because, according to you, there are difficulties with one and difficulties with the other,” the pope said, without naming Democrat Hillary Clinton or Republican Donald Trump.

In posing the question, the reporter made allusions to Clinton’s support of abortion and Trump’s statements vilifying migrants and religious minorities.

“During political campaigns, I never say a word,” the pope said. “The people are sovereign. I would only say, study the proposals well, pray and choose with your conscience.”

But in the rest of his response, while stressing that he wanted to talk about a “fictional situation,” Francis appeared to be saying that the United States was among the countries that had become so politicized that it had effectively lost what he called a culture of politics.

“When in any country there are two, three or four candidates who don’t satisfy everyone, it means that perhaps the political life of that country has become too politicized and that it does not have much political culture,” he said.

“People say ‘I’m from this party’ or ‘I’m from that party,’ but effectively, they don’t have clear thoughts about the basics, about proposals,” he said



You mean it is not a slam dunk? There are other “proposals” to be considered?


Yes it is slam dunk.

The unborn child has no voice. Vote to protect the unborn.


That’s not what the pope said.


I wish they would stop trying to get him to voice an opinion… he has so much on his plate he can’t really know the whole picture in the U.S.


Normally, I’d say that voting is a slam dunk, but considering who the “pro-life” candidate is this year, I’d have to say that it’s not so easy.



Very wise words from our Pope, and applicable to (I guess) almost all democracies these days. There are no ideal choices. Prayer and discernment are essential. :slight_smile:


My guess is that there will be some Roman Catholics who will vote for Hillary.


Maybe he could have mentioned make sure you study ‘The Gospel of Life,’
and the U.S. Bishop’s ‘Living The Gospel of Life,’ and seriously study
helping build a culture of life with our Catholic Civil duty.
If a person would objectively weigh what will happen for decades
in the judicial branch, public money funding for abortion, proliferating abortion,
and so forth — and understand that each child of the world wide tens of thousands
every day, now being chemically burned, torn limb from limb (even late term),
or otherwise killed have the same worth as born persons (also elderly & ill in euthanasia);
then they would realize having an up to 7-2 majority of ‘progressives’ and
up to hundreds of ‘progressive’ federal judges in place for decades is unacceptable.
Along with votes, we would find compassionate pro life organizations to help
give informed consciences to parents of tiny boys and girls in the womb, since
its been found out that the majority truly given (unbiased counseled) ultrasounds,
or hear unborn child heartbeat; even sometimes just seeing peaceful pro lifers
in front of an abortion facility protect the life of their child.
Starting with the local level elections, not enough people (Catholic or others)
who are pro life; care enough to give these helpless a voice to ensure that
pro life candidates are elected. When do we say, enough is enough with
the most massive mass murder by ideology perpetrated on so many with
a lack of knowledge due to educational, media, & other institutional ‘progressive’
intellectual elite bias? God knows the heart of each person who would or would not
have had their child murdered had someone reached out to them OR had been
from a culture that did not ‘legalize’ murder of children. So many are anesthetized
to the world’s immense violence against the most helpless; and their plight
goes to a ‘back burner.’

Peace be with you.


Oh, I think he does. However, unlike many Catholics he does not engage in black-and-white thinking.



Here is a study question.
Are their persons voted into office in history,
whose words championed the poor, yet also
championed atrocity and crimes against humanity?
hint: Austria for one.
With today’s politically correct playing at heart strings
public relations, I admit its difficult to make the analogy.


Where HC stands on abortion.

I find it despicable that any female support abortion in any way. Imagining a female president that supports the murder of innocent life would be the ultimate evil for this country.


Whenever I see comments like this, especially from other Catholics, I really wonder if I am watching the same debates and reading the same news articles as everyone else. I honestly cannot understand how a Catholic can support the Republican candidate this year.

I voted for Mitt Romney in 2012.
I didn’t like Ted Cruz, but I would have voted for him over Hillary Clinton.
I wasn’t crazy about Jeb Bush or Ben Carson or John Kasich or really any of the Republican candidates this year, but I would have voted for them over Hillary Clinton.

But Donald Trump? I honestly can not understand how a Catholic can vote for him. He’s an abusive, racist, misogynistic jerk with no understanding of foreign policy and no self-control. This is the person we want controlling our nuclear arsenal? The same person who only seven years ago said he thought partial-birth abortion should be legal and was throwing dinners to support a NARAL president? Who denigrates women, Muslims, individuals with disabilities, any anyone who disagrees with him?

I cannot vote for Trump. I cannot vote for Clinton. So I really am stuck this year. Probably going to write in Mike Maturen but even that seems like a concession. It’s not at all a slam dunk, and not at all clear that one candidate is a voice for the unborn.


I’m not commenting on your assessment of the Pope’s thinking style, but I would like to ask you where you get the idea that Catholic thinking isn’t black-and-white?


Sadly I believe you are correct. Let us all pray that they quickly return to the confessional and repent of it!


Indeed, does Trump care about the unborn?

What does he care about?

Hint: :yeah_me:


Full text
Full text: Pope Francis’ in-flight press conference from Azerbaijan


Not voting for either primary candidate is a throw away vote…obvious.
Interesting what is happening in Poland today. bbc.com/news/world-europe-37540139 Thousands of women dressed in black are fighting to overturn current strict abortion laws in favor of free choice to kill life.
Allowing a powerfully committed abortion female advocate in US presidency would be a new low. Having a CatholicVP that supports her is a knife in the throat of Catholics and HC knows that. Her aim is to change cultural and religious views in America .


No, my vote won’t be a throw away vote. It will do exactly as I intend for it to do: express my extreme disappointment with both Clinton and Trump, and my desire for a third party.

One of those candidates will be elected regardless, but at least I won’t be guilty of helping either of them.


Maybe… It doesn’t seem that different to me than having a powerfully-committed male abortion advocate as POTUS with a Catholic VP.

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