Bishops’ Voting Video Downplays Abortion

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by David Nussman  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  February 13, 2020   

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DETROIT (ChurchMilitant.com) - The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has released a video series about Catholic voting, but the videos fail to give pro-life issues pride of place.

The video series complements the USCCB's teaching document about Catholic voting, "Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship."

That document refers to abortion as the "pre-eminent priority" for U.S. Catholics, though some bishops have pushed for changing that. 

However, the new video series does not affirm the pre-eminence of ending the murder of unborn babies.

The video series can be found on the USCCB's YouTube channel, and there are versions in multiple languages (English, Spanish, Tagalog and Vietnamese). The four-part series is available as separate videos, or together as a single six-minute video called "Faithful Citizens Work With Christ as He Builds His Kingdom."


The word "abortion" is not said once in the entire compilation video, though protecting the lives of unborn babies is mentioned at least three times.

Another thing that gets mentioned is the need to protect the institution of marriage. But concerns about climate change and immigration seem to get more screen time.

In one part of the video, Abp. José H. Gomez of Los Angeles, president of the USCCB, says, "We are not aligned with any party, but we shine the light of our faith to influence parties to which we may belong, as well as our elected officials and those in our communities."

The bishops of the U.S. invite all Catholics to bring their faith into the public square.

Along with Abp. Gomez, a few other bishops figure in the videos: Los Angeles Aux. Bp. Robert Barron, Bp. Shelton Fabre of the Houma-Thibodaux diocese, and Abp. Joseph Naumann of Kansas City, Kansas.

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Abp. Gomez

Gomez said in a Feb. 5 statement announcing the video series, "The bishops of the U.S. invite all Catholics to bring their faith into the public square."

He continued, "Political engagement and participation are important ways that together, we can work to protect the unborn, welcome immigrants, bring justice to victims of racism and religious intolerance, support families, accompany those experiencing poverty, and advocate on behalf of all who are vulnerable."

Though mentioning the need to protect the unborn, Abp. Gomez's statement does not say that fighting abortion is a priority for Catholics in the United States.

Some pro-lifers feel the bishops' video does not go far enough to promote the right to life of unborn babies.

Author Doug Mainwaring said in a recent piece for LifeSite, "Some might dismiss this as an oversight, but the omission is a loud declaration that the USCCB chose to let abortion fade as a top life issue while quietly embracing the view of a minority — but powerful — cadre of liberal prelates aligned with Pope Francis and papal nuncio Christophe Pierre."

Mainwaring opined, "Not only is the content of the videos jarring for pro-life America, but the effeminate tone that saturates the entire series will leave many Catholic men cold."

"This is not a call to action to soldiers and warriors for Christ," he continued; "It is an appeal for do-gooders and helpers in a Church where women and soft men possess the dominant voice."

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