This Friday past was the anniversary of the date that St. Thomas More stood up to King Henry VIII. It was in 1532 on May 16 that Thomas More was removed from government and imprisoned because he could not support Henry VIII's break with the Catholic church. Thomas More could not just put his religion on the shelf as if it was something to be observed only on a Sunday, as if the lessons of the Gospels did not govern his everyday life and decision making, as if “the way, the truth and the life” doesn’t apply when running for political office.
Saint Thomas More was falsely accused of treason and with his head on the chopping block, his final words were that he was "the king's good servant, but God's first."[
If a Catholic was running for the Federal Liberal Party in Canada today we would have to first publicly renounce our faith, in the same way Thomas More was told to in 1563. He didn’t. Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau has said that any person who does not support a pro-choice party position cannot be a candidate under the Liberal banner. And Thomas Mulcair has said the same thing about the NDP.
I couldn’t do that. Saint Thomas More, the patron saint of politicians, could not qualify not be a candidate in either party. As Cardinal Collins, Archbishop of Toronto said to Mr. Trudeau in an open letter, Pope Francis himself would not be a suitable candidate for the Liberal Party.
But this also means I can’t vote for the Liberal or NDP candidate in the next Federal election, not because of the local candidate’s position on the subject of the defense of life, the horses are already out of the stable on that one – abortion has been a fact of life in Canada since 1969 and the subject is not about to be reopened. I can’t support a candidate who will have acquiesced to leaving matters of conscience outside of his political ambition. In effect they will have agreed to put King before God.
Let me be clear. You, me, each of us have a conscience. We are formed by our faith. I am not telling anyone how to vote. I am saying this.
The poor still cry for food. Babies cry for life. The sick and the elderly cry for dignity.
At one time the people complained to the church and we heard them. Acts 6:1-7
Who’s listening now?