By Susan Ciancio
What is a moral conscience, and why is it important to develop—especially as Election Day draws near?
According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, a moral conscience is “a judgment of reason whereby the human person recognizes the moral quality of a concrete act that he is going to perform, is in the process of performing, or has already completed.”
Helping your child form his moral conscience prior to his coming of voting age is integral to creating citizens who will help build and sustain a culture of life.
We are all concerned and faithful Catholics who want to elect candidates who will uphold the sacredness and dignity of every human being’s life. But how can we impart this ideal to our children? Our two-day lesson entitled Pro-Life Citizenship will help both you and your child examine the privilege of voting through pro-life eyes.
Whether your child can already vote or will be able to vote in the next couple years, it is imperative that you teach him the proper formation of a moral conscience.
Below are five of the many important topics discussed in Pro-Life Citizenship.
1. Voting as a civic duty:
Voting is one of the most significant ways that citizens can voice their beliefs and opinions, and it is a civic duty we must all take seriously. That means that we should take the time to read about candidates, listen to what they say, and look at their voting record.
2. Form your moral conscience:
If you don’t have a healthy conscience, it becomes harder and harder to see the differences between right and wrong, and you can become lost in the gray areas, never quite understanding God’s truth and the morality behind what the Church teaches. You must not only educate yourself, but you must train your conscience to see through the lies that are very often spewed during election season.
3. The four non-negotiables:
Students will learn the four non-negotiable issues that we must take into account when deciding which candidate to vote for. These four issues are so incredibly important because each destroys an innocent and unrepeatable human being.
4. What does this candidate truly believe?
Pro-Life Citizenship explains how to respond when someone accuses you of being a “single-issue” voter, and it helps you discern whether the candidate truly respects all human beings.
5. “Abortion and the Conscience of the Nation”:
In 1983, Ronald Reagan wrote an essay explaining that we all must play a roll in eliminating abortion. Students will read this essay and learn why he says that both prayer and action are necessary if we want to defeat the culture of death.
Through discussion questions, activities, and Ronald Reagan’s inspirational words, your child will come to understand the importance of seeing a candidate through a pro-life lens. There’s no time to waste. Building a moral conscience takes time and effort. We must take this responsibility seriously, for the children are literally our future.