Election Year Resources

Person Voting

Catholics are called to exercise their right to vote in a principled, prudent manner. Use these resources to prepare your heart and mind for Election Day.

Minnesota Catholic Bishops Election Year Statement

MN Bishops’ Election Year Message from Minnesota Catholic Conference on Vimeo.

In their 2016 election year statement, entitled “Casting a Principled, Informed Vote this November,” Minnesota’s Catholic bishops remind the faithful of the importance of exercising the right to vote and the factors to consider when casting a ballot. The statement addresses some of the peculiarities of this year’s elections, but encourages Minnesota’s Catholics to not let frustrations with presidential politics prevent them from weighing in on important local elections.

Nine Days for Our State and Nation Novena

While we must evaluate candidates’ positions in the lead-up to Election Day, prayerfully forming our hearts and minds in light of the Church’s teaching must also be a part of our preparation. This novena includes prayers and reflections on the important issues facing our state and nation, adapted from the USCCB’s Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship. While it’s designed to be prayed in the days leading up to Election Day (beginning with October 30), it’s never too early to start prayerfully reflecting on the Church’s social teaching and its importance in our voting decisions.

Minnesota Legislature Candidate Questionnaire

Minnesotans have a unique opportunity to shape the political landscape of our state this year. Our entire State Legislature is up for election, meaning Catholics can do their part to identify and elect candidates who will protect life and promote dignity here in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. Use our Minnesota Legislature Candidate Questionnaire to help you find out where candidates in your local races stand on the key issues facing our state.

Discerning Your Vote

There are moral and ethical dimensions to every public policy. As faithful citizens, we evaluate our candidates’ positions and character in light of the Church’s social teaching. Use this resource to assist in discerning where candidates stand on important issues. Available as a webpage or a downloadable PDF.

FIPA Columns on Voting

In the months leading up to November, MCC’s regular Faith in the Public Arena column will focus on a different aspect of voting from a Catholic perspective. Columns will be posted below when they’re published.

Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship (ENGLISH AND SPANISH)

Forming Conscience for Faithful Citizenship is the official Election Year teaching of the U.S. Catholic bishops. This resource provides guidance for Catholics in the exercise of their rights and duties as participants in our democracy, lifting up our dual heritage as both faithful Catholics and American citizens. The Faithful Citizenship webpage includes additional resources, such as bulletin inserts and informational videos.

Living the Gospel of Life: A Challenge to American Catholics

Originally released in 1998, this USCCB document is still a viable resource for American Catholic looking to form their consciences in preparation for elections in 2016. It contextualizes our present day policy debates within deeper shifts and trends in society’s consideration of human life and dignity.

Political Activity Guidelines

As Catholics, we must never be afraid of bringing our faith into the public square. However, because the Church is not a political entity, we must make sure that our individual advocacy efforts are kept distinct from the Church’s teaching voice. This resource, updated in July 2016, provides guidelines for parish and diocesan political activity, clearly laying out which activities are prohibited and which are permissible.

Presidential Candidates Positions

This one-page document offers Catholics a quick reference for the positions of major party candidates for president, including statements and voting records on 12 issues. This resource was collaboratively produced by the Florida Catholic Conference, the Virginia Catholic Conference, and the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference.

Minnesota Election Resources

The Secretary of State’s website provides a number of helpful tools to get you ready for Election Day, including online voter registration. You can also use this page to locate your polling place, preview your ballot, and learn more about absentee voting.