It is important that faithful Catholics take their place in the public square to stand up for the lives of the unborn, to defend God’s definition of marriage, and to protect religious liberty.
At many levels, local, state, and national, there is a need for people who are not afraid to speak and act in accord with their Christian faith. There is a need for Catholics who understand that religious freedom doesn’t mean freedom from religion, but the freedom OF religion, and that separation of church and state is a phrase actually meaning that the state is not to infringe on the rights of each individual or group in the practice of their religion (though the phrase is often used to the contrary).
Local school boards, Nebraska State Board of Education, Educational Service Unit boards, community college boards, city councils, county commissioners, state legislators, natural resource districts, and many more offices should be considered as possibilities by Catholics who want to help guide the direction of the country. No office is too great or too small.
March 1st is the deadline for new candidates to file with your county or state election office (February 16th for incumbents).
Current offices up for election include:
Nebraska Legislative Districts 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 15, 17, 19, 23, 31, and 39 are among those up for re-election, with the state senators in Districts 5 (Heath Mello), 13 (Tanya Cook), and 39 (Beau McCoy) unable to run again because of term limits. For these and other state-wide or multi-county offices, go to the Nebraska Secretary of State website at http://www.sos.ne.gov/elec/2016/elections.html
The largest school district in Nebraska, Omaha Public Schools, has 5 of the 9 members of the Board of Education up for re-election–from Districts 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9. As of this writing, only the current representative in District 5 (Lou Ann Goding) has filed for re-election.
All school boards will have some members whose positions are up for re-election.
Of course, there are many other offices too numerous to mention that are up for re-election. To find out more, check with the election commission in the county in which you live. Douglas County: http://www.votedouglascounty.com/ Holt County: http://www.co.holt.ne.us/ Madison County: http://www.madisoncountyne.com/ Platte County: http://www.plattecounty.net/webpages/election/election.html Sarpy County: http://www.sarpy.com/election/
Pope Francis encouraged Catholics to participate in the noble calling of politics. “None of us can say, ‘I have nothing to do with this, they govern. . . .’ No, no, I am responsible for their governance, and I have to do the best so that they govern well, and I have to do my best by participating in politics according to my ability. Politics, according to the Social Doctrine of the Church, is one of the highest forms of charity, because it serves the common good. I cannot wash my hands, eh? We all have to give something! […] A good Catholic meddles in politics, offering the best of himself, so that those who govern can govern.”