N.C. bishops 'pleased' with marriage vote, pray for unity and renewal - Information about the amendment
Information about the amendment
The statewide campaign for the marriage amendment is closing in on the Tuesday, May 8, vote.
The amendment would enshrine traditional marriage in the North Carolina constitution – taking what is already state law and shielding it from being redefined by judges or politicians, proponents say.
The for/against ballot states: "Marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this State."
Polls on May 8, Election Day, will be open from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Pictured: Deacons Art Kingsley (left), Peter Shaw and his father John Shaw, and Father James Ebright all listen as the Rev. Mark Harris of First Baptist Church in Charlotte speaks at a marriage amendment campaign press conference May 7, one day before the May 8 vote on the statewide constitutional amendment to protect traditional marriage. More than 200 ministers each spoke in favor of the amendment at the Charlotte event. (David Hains for the Catholic News Herald)
Republican and Democratic party primaries are also being held on May 8, but any registered voter in North Carolina can take part in the marriage amendment ballot.
Supporters of the amendment, led by the nonpartisan coalition Vote for Marriage NC, and opponents are meeting with voters, airing television campaign ads and disseminating information to North Carolina residents in person and online through websites and social media.
North Carolina's two bishops, Bishop Peter Jugis of Charlotte and Bishop Michael Burbidge of Raleigh, are urging Catholics to vote for the constitutional amendment, and they are using the upcoming vote as an opportunity to catechize the faithful about Church teaching on the sacrament of marriage.
The remaining days of the campaign are seeing a flurry of activity in churches of many denominations across the state as the message to support the amendment goes from the pulpits to the pews.
Vote for Marriage NC, the coalition of churches and public policy groups that have banded together to promote passage of the amendment, made a push over the weekend of April 28-29. Sermons, handouts and a video featuring many prominent local pastors urged supporters to go to the polls on May 8.
A high-profile endorsement from famed evangelist Billy Graham, along with similar endorsements from his son Franklin Graham and daughter Anne Graham Lotz, has also boosted the supporters' message out to North Carolina voters.
Catholic parishes in the dioceses of Charlotte and Raleigh will make their push for the amendment this weekend, May 5-6. A letter from Bishop Jugis and Bishop Burbidge urging voters to turn out to the polls on May 8 will be read at all Masses.
Registered Catholic families throughout the state have also received postcard reminders from the bishops during the final days of the campaign.
As the May 8 vote approached, Bishop Peter Jugis reflected on what all of the discussion about marriage has meant to Catholics in the diocese.
"The marriage amendment issue has required Catholics to think about the sanctity of the sacrament of matrimony. I pray that this reflection will strengthen their commitment to marriage as created by God, and that they will vote for the amendment on May 8," he said.
— David Hains, diocesan Director of Communication
Where and when to vote?
www.ncvoterguide.org: Find your polling place, check your registration status.
www.ncvotered.com: The website for the nonpartisan, nonprofit North Carolina Center for Voter Education. You can also call them at 1-877-25-VOTER.
More about marriage
Explore facts about the marriage amendment and read answers to marriage questions.
Pope Benedict XVI weighs in on marriage laws in the U.S.
Features about local couples:
North Carolina's Catholic bishops have produced a series of videos explaining Church teaching about the sacrament of marriage. View the videos.
For details about the ballot initiative, go to www.catholicvoicenc.org.
To learn more about Church teaching on the sacrament of marriage and resources for your marriage, check out the following websites: ForYourMarriage.org, Marriage-Unique For a Reason, and Why Marriage Matters.
Citizenship and voting resources for Catholics: www.catholicvote.org
Lives of the Saints
St. Gregory the Great feast day Sept. 3St. Gregory the Great, a central figure of the medieval western Church and one of the most admired popes in history, is commemorated in the Ordinary Form of the Roman Catholic liturgy on Sept. 3. Born near the middle of the 6th century into...
Exaltation of the Holy Cross celebrated on Sept. 14Early in the fourth century St. Helena, mother of the Roman Emperor Constantine, went to Jerusalem in search of the holy places of Christ's life. She razed the Temple of Aphrodite, which tradition held was built over the Savior's tomb, and her son built...
Feast day of Padre Pio, 'a man of prayer and suffering,' celebrated Sept. 23On Sept. 23, the Catholic Church remembers the Italian Franciscan priest St. Pio of Petrelcina, better known as "Padre Pio" and known for his suffering, humility and miracles. The man later known by these names was originally named Francesco...
Priests' vesting prayers for Mass
What are the traditional Latin Mass vestments?The sacred vestments are visual expressions of the clergy's role in the Mass. For the priest, the vestments show him as "in persona Christi" ("in the person of Christ") during the liturgy. Amice: A white linen cloth covering the neck and shoulder, recalling the cloth that the Roman soldiers used to blindfold Jesus while they beat him. Alb:...Read More...
Prayer 1 – "Cum lavat manus" (Washing of hands)While it is no longer the practice for all priests to offer prayers while vesting for Mass, many do offer these "vesting prayers." The prayers are a good occasion for them to be enriched with a profound humility and willing availability to act in the very Person of Christ at the Holy Sacrifice. In this series over the coming weeks, we look...Read More...
Prayer 2 – "Ad amictum" (Prayer used for the amice)While it is no longer the practice for all priests to offer prayers while vesting for Mass, many do offer these "vesting prayers." The prayers are a good occasion for them to be enriched with a profound humility and willing availability to act in the very Person of Christ at the Holy Sacrifice. In this series, we look at each vesting prayer...Read More...
Year of FaithROKSTORIES ERROR: File not found: images/stories/News_Vatican/112013-pope-at-st-peter-tomb.pngROKSTORIES ERROR: File not found: images/stories/News_Vatican/112513_pope_kiss.png
Year of two popes leaves indelible mark on Year of FaithVATICAN CITY — The goal of the Year of Faith, which concludes Nov. 24, has been to educate Catholics about basic church teachings, strengthen their faith and inspire them to share it with others. If it has succeeded, as organizers say it has,...
Vatican to display St. Peter's relics at final Mass of Year of FaithVATICAN CITY — For the first time, bones traditionally believed to be relics of St. Peter the Apostle will be displayed for public veneration in St. Peter's Square Nov. 24, at a Mass celebrated by Pope Francis to conclude the Year of Faith. Archbishop...
Pope venerates apostle's relics, urges people focus on ChristVATICAN CITY — Pope Francis closed the Year of Faith by calling on people to keep Christ at the center of their lives, especially in times of trouble. "When Jesus is at the center, light shines even the darkest moments of our lives; he gives...
Vatican II continues to mark ecclesial life today, says archbishopERIE, Pa. — Archbishop Piero Marini, a Vatican official, recalls watching bishops day after day pour out of the Vatican hall where they gathered 50 years ago to formulate the constitutions, decrees and declarations that brought historic change...
FROM THE PASTORS
Read and listen to homilies posted regularly by pastors at parishes within the Diocese of Charlotte:
- Fr. Roger Arnsparger at St. John the Baptist in Tryon
- Fr. Frank Cancro at Queen of the Apostles
- Fr. Jason Christian at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Patrick Earl at St. Peter in Charlotte
- Fr. Matthew Kauth at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Timothy Reid at St. Ann in Charlotte
- Fr. Christopher Riehl's archive from St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Benjamin Roberts at Our Lady of Lourdes in Monroe. Listen to homily podcasts.
- Fr. Joshua Voitus at St. Mary, Mother of God Parish in Sylva, including homilies in Spanish
- Fr. Patrick Winslow at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Gospel reflection videos from St. Matthew Church
- Watch full Masses live and on demand, listen to homilies and reflections from Sacred Heart Church in Salisbury
- Listen and watch homilies from St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Listen to homilies from St. William Catholic Church in Murphy