Okay here’s a question. recently i have seen a couple of christian articles and one catholic video that say or imply that if you vote for Obama or not vote at all you will end up in hell. Is this true? Isn’t voting just a civil right and not a salvation issue?
There’s always confession.
With rights come responsibilities.
When you vote for someone to lead you, you accept a portion of the responsibility of what is done in the country under that person’s leadership. (Which is probably why Our LORD did not teach democracy.)
I wouldn’t say that an Obama vote would earn Hell, but before you vote, take your question to a priest. He can give a fuller insight.
The Catholic Church never tells you who to vote for, or who to not vote for.
I wouldn’t vote for Obama under any circumstance, but to threaten someone with hell who does is over the line. You vote your conscience. That being said, we have an obligation to seek an informed conscience. There is good and bad on both sides. Look to see who does the most good, and who would bring about the greater evil, then vote for the one who you decide is better.
I have a hard time with people who take the lazy (and dishonest) way of arguing by pulling the big guns out.
It seems that many arguments today involve comparing one’s opponent to Hitler or the nazis. And it often involves rather minor issues.
While I wouldn’t vote for Obama either - I wouldn’t presume to have any idea on how such a vote would impact one’s eternal soul.
The same kind of arguments, of course, are used against conservatives. The whole racist, homophobic, sexist arguments that are meant to restrict any response.
It seems lazy to me. if you want me to agree with you, then explain why such a vote would be against my best interests. What implications are there for an Obama reelection? - and how might those be resolved in a Romney administration.
Agreed. Solid. But more:
The Catholic Church does have Christ’s authority to teach us and to encourage us to get on and stay on the path that continually leads us to Christ and eternal salvation.
We know we can commit mortal sin, and if we die with unconfessed mortal sin, we will most likely end in hell. I say “most likely” because that judgment belongs to Christ alone, not any man.
The Church has given us the “5 non-negotiables” and has clearly stated that each - abortion, euthanasia, stem cell research, cloning, and gay marriage are always intrinsically evil. To do any of them is a mortal sin. To support any of them is also a mortal sin.
But the condition to be a mortal sin also requires us to know that it is a mortal sin. Hence, Waiting reminds us that we do have an obligation to seek a WELL FORMED CONSCIENCE. Thus, we cannot just blow off the Church’s teaching on the 5 non-negotiables.
Thank God, we do have confession. But a proper confession requires SINCERE and HONEST regret for our sin and a true intent to not repeat that sin. So it seems one cannot vote for candidates who clearly support one or or more of the non-negotiables and think, well, I just confess it and be OK.
All this is NOT a threat. It is simply voicing the proper teaching and possible consequences of rejecting that teaching.
We are Catholics first. Americans, second. And political party third. Any conflict between them should be resolved in favor of the higher priority.
Any mortal sin, if not repented of and absolved sacramentally, can lead a person to hell.
For something to be a mortal sin, there are three criteria to be fulfilled: grave matter, full knowledge, and full consent.
Let’s examine “voting for Obama” under these heads:
Grave matter: This one is the easiest. Obama has infringed on the religious liberty of Catholics, condones and enables abortions, and is also an advocate of “gay rights”. His opponent, whatever his flaws, is opposed to these moral evils; and he does not advocate any “proportionately greater evil” (say, compulsory infanticide of all male children aged 2 or below, as King Herod did.) To collaborate in the propagation of murder and sexual perversion, when you had a choice not to*, is certainly grave matter.
Full knowledge: This one is a little trickier. The facts about both candidates are out there. But there can be many reasons - a poorly formed conscience, past traumata, media hype, party loyalty, family beliefs, psychological immaturity - that may prevent knowledge from being “full” in this case. However, it can always be argued that every voter has the right to inform himself, and not blindly subscribe to what he is told by others. So this point doesn’t hold good in all those who vote for Obama.
Full consent: I doubt very much that anyone is being threatened at gunpoint and told “vote for Obama”. Similarly, while it is conceivable that a patient with paranoid schizophrenia might hear voices telling him “Vote for Obama!”, that would be extremely unlikely. The vast majority of those who vote for Obama (or Romney) do so with full consent, not under duress or coercion. So this criterion is fulfilled as well.
Summing up: a vote for Obama certainly fulfills two of the three criteria for a mortal sin; and if a voter does have full knowledge, then it is a mortal sin. But one can always repent (which does not mean going to Confession and then voting for him again; it means turning away from the sin), have a change of heart, and make reparation in other ways.
- I add this point because both major political parties in my country support abortion and contraception; therefore, a Catholic Indian voter would either have to refrain from voting, vote for an independent candidate, or choose the party which is less immoral (say, choosing a Catholic-neutral party over one that will persecute Catholics; or choosing one that is stronger on other social justice issues, such as child health or stronger rape legislation). This is, of course, not the case in America.
Confession requires being truly sorry for one’s sins, so going ahead and pulling the “O” lever knowing that he supports the murder of innocent children will not cut it in confession. It would be like someone who decides to rob a bank on the pretext of going to confession afterwards, and thinking they are forgiven.
Which, just to add, is ALSO a mortal sin. It’s called presumption folks.
If you know, because the Church has told you, in no uncertain certain terms, that: Abortion and Same Sex Marriage are Grave Matter ie mortal sin, and voting for someone who openly and adamantly follows and wants to further this Evil making voting for them also grave matter.
Can you really repent of having commited that sin?
Would it not be much easier NOT to commit the sin?
I don’t know but to me confession requires a conversion of the heart not just spew out words. It is not a hail Mary pass.
Jesus said that impurity comes out of our heart and our mouths, do we want to be like white sepulcres?
Pulling the lever for “R” would then have the same consequence since he has supported abortion whenever the polls have told him it was in his best interest.
Statistics prove that the numbers of abortions (at least in the US) actually rise when we have a president that runs as “Pro-Life”. That fact aside, I will never tell someone they are going to hell for voting for one of these candidates. God gave us a free will… It seems there is a fringe element in the Church that wants to take that away.
However, there are 5 non-negotiables for Catholic voters. We cannot vote for a candidate who supports these issues (Abortion is always at the top but the rest are not in order).
- Fetal stem-cell research
- Homosexual marriage
- Human cloning
Many voters ignore this and vote based on emotions, the party their parents belong to, cultural expectations, or other factors not connected with being a faithful Catholic.
Please link to these statistics, because taht sounds like a blatant falsehood from where I’m sitting.
That fact aside, I will never tell someone they are going to hell for voting for one of these candidates.
You should never tell anyone they’re going to Hell for any reason. We can’t say that because we don’t know. We can say it won’t help their chances, or that’ll it definitely against moral law, but we cannot make a definite statement.
God gave us a free will… It seems there is a fringe element in the Church that wants to take that away.
At this point, you start to sound just like every other Catholic who supports Obama that I’ve come across. Why can’t you people understand that informing you about the truth is not the same thing as negating your free will. You could know 100% everything that was going to happen as a result of an action, it’s still your choice whether or not to perform it.
In this instance, we are stating that the Church teaches against these things that Obama stands in favor of. We also are teaching that supporting these things is a mortal sin. You can still choose to support them.
Informing your conscience is not negating your free will.
Well, there is this:
Catholic Bishop: Democrats support evil, will go to hell
A Catholic Bishop is threatening his flock with eternal damnation if they support Barack Obama and the Democrats in November.
Bishop David Ricken of the Green Bay Catholic Diocese sent out a letter to his parishioners warning that voting for Democrats and President Barack Obama this November may be a one way ticket to hell.
In the letter, dated Wednesday, October 24, Bishop Ricken claims supporting a woman’s right to reproductive freedom (abortion); death with dignity (euthanasia); important scientific research (stem cell research); and marriage equality for gay and lesbian citizens are all “intrinsically evil.”
In the letter Ricken goes on to claim that:
“Some candidates and one party have even chosen some of these (abortion, euthanasia, embryonic stem cell research, and homosexual marriage) as their party’s or their personal political platform. To vote for someone in favor of these positions means that you could be morally ‘complicit’ with these choices which are intrinsically evil. This could put your own soul in jeopardy.”
Can one commit a mortal sin in voting? Yes. Can one die in that state and thus by voting actually choose hell? yes.
I would completely disregard those implications for the mere reason that encouraging someone to vote against Obama implies that one should vote for his opponents, many of whom *also *support positions contrary to Catholic teaching.
I would also add that I am not an Obama supporter, if only to stave off any future attempts to convert me to the Romney camp.
I am not sure we are permitted here to discuss particular persons who are running (?)
you should never tell anything because many reasons of hell.
What happens to you if you vote for a 3rd candidate?