Monday, November 01, 2010

On the Vote... Again

Last week, of course, the church's soon-to-be Cardinal-"Chief Justice" issued his Election Message...

...and now, on this Election Eve, for another angle on what it means to "vote Catholic," here's another Video Pastoral from another ranking B16 appointee, this time featuring Archbishop Gregory Aymond of New Orleans:

By way of context, it's worth recalling that on Friday, the 60 year-old prelate made The Slate of nominees for the USCCB presidency. Already the incoming chair of the bench's Committee for Divine Worship, the nod for the top post marked the second time the Crescent City's first-ever native-son archbishop has been listed among the Big Ten.

Put simply, that's an accolade not even the Great Burke could claim.

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Meanwhile, with all of the House, a third of the Senate, and the lion's share of the nation's statehouses at stake in tomorrow's vote, in keeping with the long-winning tradition of this faith on these shores -- and these pages' long-standing custom for major holidays and elections -- here below is the time-honored Prayer for the Nation of these States' founding bishop, John Carroll of Baltimore.

Friend and counselor to Washington and Franklin, cousin of the lone Catholic signer of the Declaration of Independence, Carroll wrote and first delivered this text in the summer of 1791:
We pray, Thee O Almighty and Eternal God! Who through Jesus Christ hast revealed Thy glory to all nations, to preserve the works of Thy mercy, that Thy Church, being spread through the whole world, may continue with unchanging faith in the confession of Thy Name.

We pray Thee, who alone art good and holy, to endow with heavenly knowledge, sincere zeal, and sanctity of life, our chief bishop, Pope Benedict, the Vicar of Our Lord Jesus Christ, in the government of his Church; our own bishop, N., all other bishops, prelates, and pastors of the Church; and especially those who are appointed to exercise amongst us the functions of the holy ministry, and conduct Thy people into the ways of salvation.

We pray Thee O God of might, wisdom, and justice! Through whom authority is rightly administered, laws are enacted, and judgment decreed, assist with Thy Holy Spirit of counsel and fortitude the President of these United States, that his administration may be conducted in righteousness, and be eminently useful to Thy people over whom he presides; by encouraging due respect for virtue and religion; by a faithful execution of the laws in justice and mercy; and by restraining vice and immorality. Let the light of Thy divine wisdom direct the deliberations of Congress, and shine forth in all the proceedings and laws framed for our rule and government, so that they may tend to the preservation of peace, the promotion of national happiness, the increase of industry, sobriety, and useful knowledge; and may perpetuate to us the blessing of equal liberty.

We pray for his excellency, the governor of this state, for the members of the assembly, for all judges, magistrates, and other officers who are appointed to guard our political welfare, that they may be enabled, by Thy powerful protection, to discharge the duties of their respective stations with honesty and ability.

We recommend likewise, to Thy unbounded mercy, all our brethren and fellow citizens throughout the United States, that they may be blessed in the knowledge and sanctified in the observance of Thy most holy law; that they may be preserved in union, and in that peace which the world cannot give; and after enjoying the blessings of this life, be admitted to those which are eternal.

Finally, we pray to Thee, O Lord of mercy, to remember the souls of Thy servants departed who are gone before us with the sign of faith and repose in the sleep of peace; the souls of our parents, relatives, and friends; of those who, when living, were members of this congregation, and particularly of such as are lately deceased; of all benefactors who, by their donations or legacies to this Church, witnessed their zeal for the decency of divine worship and proved their claim to our grateful and charitable remembrance.

To these, O Lord, and to all that rest in Christ, grant, we beseech Thee, a place of refreshment, light, and everlasting peace, through the same Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Savior. Amen.