The Mission of the "Your Catholic Voice" movement is to motivate, educate and activate Catholic citizens for political and social participation as a response to their baptismal vocation and the call of our Church to be faithful citizens.
There are two aspects to our mission and that is why they are both contained in the motto of the movement: "CULTIVATE YOUR FAITH/ACTIVATE YOUR VOICE." Both activities of the movement are vitally important.
“Your Catholic Voice Foundation” is committed to fulfilling the task contained in the phrase “CULTIVATE YOUR FAITH" by engaging in an evangelical and educational mission. The Mission of “Your Catholic Voice Foundation” is to inform, educate and motivate Catholic citizens to respond to their baptismal vocation and the call of our Church to be faithful citizens. YCVF is a not for profit organization and has filed an application with the Internal Revenue Service as a 501 © 3 exempt organization. Gifts to the YCVF are tax deductible from your federal income tax.
"Your Catholic Voice" is dedicated to activating faithful Catholic citizens for the vital work of social and political participation. It fulfills the aspect of our mission flowing from “Activate Your Voice.” YCV is a not for profit organization and has filed an application for recognition under sections 501 © 4 of the Internal Revenue Code. Gifts to YCV are not deductible from your federal income tax. It is a Catholic citizens movement, promoting the common good and engaging its members in fulfilling their obligations of what our Bishops have called “faithful Citizenship.”Information concerning “YCV” can be found at http://www.yourcatholicvoice.org
In our mission of informing, educating, supporting and serving a “New Catholic Action” by educating Catholic Christians (other Christians, other people of faith and all people of good will) in the fullness of teaching of the Catholic Church, we emphasize the great themes of the pontificate of Pope John Paul II as well as what is called the “social teaching” of the Church.
Throughout his pontificate, our Holy Father, Pope John Paul II has issued a passionate consistent call for a “New Evangelization” Among the many places wherein he explains this phrase is his “POST-SYNODAL APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION entitled “ECCLESIA IN AMERICA” which was specifically addressed “TO THE BISHOPS, PRIESTS AND DEACONS, MEN AND WOMEN RELIGIOUS,AND ALL THE LAY FAITHFUL ON THE ENCOUNTER WITH THE LIVING JESUS CHRIST: THE WAY TO CONVERSION,COMMUNION AND SOLIDARITY IN AMERICA:
“The basic task for which Jesus sends out his disciples is the proclamation of the Good News, that is, evangelization (cf. Mk 16:15-18). Consequently, “to evangelize is the grace and vocation proper to the Church, her most profound identity”. (243) As I have said on other occasions, the new and unique situation in which the world and the Church find themselves at the threshold of the Third Millennium, and the urgent needs which result, mean that the mission of evangelization today calls for a new program which can be defined overall as a “new evangelization”. (244) As the Church's Supreme Pastor, I urgently desire to encourage all the members of God's People, particularly those living in America — where I first appealed for a commitment “new in its ardor, methods and expression” (245) — to take up this project and to cooperate in carrying it out. In accepting this mission, everyone should keep in mind that the vital core of the new evangelization must be a clear and unequivocal proclamation of the person of Jesus Christ, that is, the preaching of his name, his teaching, his life, his promises and the Kingdom which he has gained for us by his Paschal Mystery. (246)”
The fact is that many baptized Catholics do not fully understand either the depth or meaning of their faith. Or worse, some know but do not live in a way that is faithful to what they know. There is a desperate need for a “new evangelization” within the Church. A new “catechesis” (or course of instruction in the faith) is a vital part of that task. In that same exhortation we read of the importance of catechesis: “69. The new evangelization in which the whole continent is engaged means that faith cannot be taken for granted, but must be explicitly proposed in all its breadth and richness. This is the principal objective of catechesis, which, by its very nature, is an essential aspect of the new evangelization. “Catechesis is a process of formation in faith, hope and charity; it shapes the mind and touches the heart, leading the person to embrace Christ fully and completely. It introduces the believer more fully into the experience of the Christian life, which involves the liturgical celebration of the mystery of the Redemption and the Christian service of others”. (256)… .In catechesis it will be useful to keep in mind, especially on a continent like America where the social question takes on such importance, that “growth in the understanding of the faith and its practical expression in social life are intimately connected. Efforts made to favor an encounter with Christ cannot fail to have a positive repercussion in the promotion of the common good in a just society”. (262)
The evangelization of culture
70. My Predecessor Paul VI widely remarked that “the split between the Gospel and culture is undoubtedly the drama of our time”. (263) Hence the Synod Fathers rightly felt that “the new evangelization calls for a clearly conceived, serious and well organized effort to evangelize culture”. (264) The Son of God, by taking upon himself our human nature, became incarnate within a particular people, even though his redemptive death brought salvation to all people, of every culture, race and condition. The gift of his Spirit and his love are meant for each and every people and culture, in order to bring them all into unity after the example of the perfect unity existing in the Triune God. For this to happen, it is necessary to inculturate preaching in such a way that the Gospel is proclaimed in the language and in the culture of its hearers. (265) At the same time, however, it must not be forgotten that the Paschal Mystery of Christ, the supreme manifestation of the infinite God within the finitude of history, is the only valid point of reference for all of humanity on its pilgrimage in search of authentic unity and true peace.”
As Catholic citizens we know that this “split between the Gospel and culture” will only change when Catholics begin to truly understand and live their faith. “Your Catholic Voice Foundation” serves this evangelical and educational mission.
This same apostolic exhortation speaks to the vital part of the Church’s teaching referred to as her “social teaching”:
“54. Faced with the grave social problems which, with different characteristics, are present throughout America, Catholics know that they can find in the Church's social doctrine an answer which serves as a starting-point in the search for practical solutions. Spreading this doctrine is an authentic pastoral priority. It is therefore important “that in America the agents of evangelization (Bishops, priests, teachers, pastoral workers, etc.) make their own this treasure which is the Church's social teaching and, inspired by it, become capable of interpreting the present situation and determine the actions to take”. (199) In this regard, special care must be taken to train lay persons capable of working, on the basis of their faith in Christ, to transform earthly realities. In addition, it will help to promote and support the study of this doctrine in every area of the life of the particular Churches in America, especially in the universities, so that it may be more deeply known and applied to American society. The complex social reality of the continent is a fruitful field for the analysis and application of the universal principles contained in this doctrine. To this end, it would be very useful to have a compendium or approved synthesis of Catholic social doctrine, including a “Catechism”, which would show the connection between it and the new evangelization.”
Your Catholic Voice Foundation is committed to making the treasury of the Church’s social teaching both accessible and known, so that it can pave the way to more just and human society.
They are OUR ORGANIZING PRINCIPLES:
As Catholic citizens, faithful to our baptismal calling, we understand our social participation involves making judgments and taking actions concerning issues that fall in the arena of what is called prudential judgment. In other words, faithful Catholics can – and do- disagree on many social, economic, political and policy issues.
Therefore, in our educational mission we will educate our members and involve ourselves only in those issues that flow from our “FOUR PILLARS OF PARTICIPATION.” These four pillars form the basis of our movement and the framework around which we will engage in our educational mission. Those pillars are life, family, freedom and solidarity with the poor and the needy.
Your Catholic Voice Foundation affirms the inviolable dignity of every human life from conception to natural death, at every stage and every age. We are committed to supporting and advancing every legitimate effort to ensure that the dignity of every human person becomes the polestar of all public policy.
Our position on the dignity of every human person and the sanctity of every life is not a "single issue" commitment but rather constitutes a framework within and against which every other issue will be measured in our educational and advocacy efforts.
The inalienable right to life is a basic human right and is guaranteed by the natural law that binds all men and women. In the American experiment the U.S. Constitution secures that right as one that is inalienable. We affirm the right to life as the first right and the freedom to be born as the first freedom. We are unqualifiedly, unapologetically and enthusiastically pro-life.
We are also "Whole Life/Pro-Life" By that we mean that being "Pro-Life" is a way of life, not a single issue, and it has implications across the entire spectrum of life, human rights and social justice issues. Neither is this position simply a "religious" position, in the sense that religious people should "keep it to themselves". This is the fundamental human and civil rights issue of our age.
Your Catholic Voice Foundation affirms the primacy of the family as the first cell of society, the first church, first government, first school, first hospital, first economy, and the first mediating institution of society.
A just philosophy of government is predicated upon the understanding that the family is the first government and that all other government must first be at its service. In his marvelous apostolic exhortation on the family (The Role of the Christian family in the Modern World) Pope John Paul II affirms the social and political role of the family and calls for the development of a “family politics”. We embrace this challenge through our educational mission of helping Catholics, other Christians and all people of good will to understand, respect and promote the family as the first vital cell of human society.
We affirm the two- parent, marriage bound family as the foundation of civil society. In so doing, we also secure the safest most secure support for those families. By defending the two parent, marriage bound family we help ensure a stable social order wherein single parent families and others who have suffered from the ravages of the break down of the family can find the greatest support and wherein true compassion for all can be best advanced.
We affirm that parents are the first teachers of their children and that all education begins in the home. We support the fundamental educational mission of parents as the first teachers of their children and the right to choose from a full array of options, public, private, parochial and charter schools, no matter what their economic status, as an extension of that educational mission. We support any effective and constitutionally sound efforts to encourage, empower, and support all parents in extending their educational mission, no matter what their economic conditions, through parental choice.
We support parents, students, associations, organizations and religious institutions who support and defend the family. We also oppose what undermines the stability of the family. We live in a culture infected by a misguided notion of freedom as a raw power over others; a society that all too often treats persons as products. This has led to a loss of a bedrock understanding of basic human dignity and a confused notion of human sexuality that denigrates women (now even children) and views people as objects to be used. We oppose any efforts to advance or somehow protect the denigration of human persons through seeking to protect pornography as “free speech.” It is neither speech, nor does it promote authentic human freedom and flourishing.
It is through defending and promoting the family that authentic freedom and a restoration of human dignity will be restored.
Your Catholic Voice Foundation is committed to a fundamental vision of human freedom that is informed by the insights derived from classical Jewish and Christian thought. Freedom has two sides to its reach; both a freedom "from" and a freedom "for." Though we may be free to choose we are never free to make the objects of our choice good or evil, right or wrong. Freedom must be bounded by truth and exercised within a moral constitution. It brings with it a social obligation- a commitment to human solidarity; we simply are “our brother’s keeper.”
At the foundation of our commitment to freedom is our dedication to promoting religious freedom for all men and women. We embrace the American proposition that religious freedom is best protected by the principles of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and that there should be no establishment of religion in the sense of a Federal or State sponsored Church, which mandates adherence. Nor do we believe that coercion has any place in authentic religious expression or practice.
However, we affirm that religious faith is a human and social "good" and that the values informed by faith as applied to our life together have been the very foundation of our freedom. Therefore we support religious freedom as a basic human right which must be secured and protected by law. We support religious freedom; rightly understood and applied, as a freedom for religious expression not a freedom from such expression. This entails a freedom for people of all faiths, or no faith, along with all Americans, to participate in the public conversation and in the public square.
Your Catholic Voice Foundation is dedicated to a Catholic Christian understanding of the social mission. That understanding requires that we have a "heart" (in the biblical sense of a fundamental core commitment) for the "poor" in all of their manifestations in our midst.
We are dedicated to supporting our members in solidarity in their relationships with one another as well as in their full participation in society at every level. We affirm that an authentic commitment to solidarity entails an obligation to those who have no voice and compassion toward all those in need.
We affirm the full social teaching of the Church and recognize our obligation to social justice and a preferential love for the poor. We will educate our members in the social encyclicals of our Church and take the principles derived from the treasury of this teaching and offer them as a framework for effective social action and public policy to promote the common good.
ABSOLUTELY, the founders and directors of YCVF pledge complete loyalty to the Holy Father and the Bishops in union with him, without qualification or any reservation.
It is precisely because we believe that the teaching of the Catholic Church is the truth that we are dedicated to making it fully known. We also believe that this Pontificate, in the rich treasury of Encyclical letters, Apostolic Exhortations, Catechesis, sermons and locutions, has offered to the Church and the world a wonderfully fresh restatement of the wisdom of 2000 years of Christian teaching!
Finally we believe that the “Catechism of the Catholic Church” is a sure guide and offers a wonderful exposition of the Sacred Scripture and Tradition.
We welcome the “Social Catechism” called for in “Ecclesia in America” and offer to assist in making it known and promoting its teaching as a framework for social action. Pope John Paul II wrote in that exhortation:
“… It would be very useful to have a compendium or approved synthesis of Catholic social doctrine, including a “Catechism”, which would show the connection between it and the new evangelization. The part which the Catechism of the Catholic Church devotes to this material, in its treatment of the seventh commandment of the Decalogue, could serve as the starting-point for such a “Catechism of Catholic Social Doctrine”. Naturally, as in the case of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, such a synthesis would only formulate general principles, leaving their application to further treatment of the specific issues bound up with the different local situations. (200)” (par. 54) We affirm, as also stated again in that exhortation, that the moral vision of the Church “rests on the threefold cornerstone of human dignity, solidarity and subsidiarity”. We are dedicated to helping this cornerstone be both understood and incorporated in genuine efforts to build a more just and human society and promote the common good.
Your Catholic Voice Foundation is a Not-for-Profit Corporation. YCVF has been granted a recognition of tax exemption under Section 501 © 3 of the Internal Revenue Code.