The Bishops of the Diocese of North Carolina Encourage Voting in Upcoming Elections
Beloved of God,
We greet you in the name of the Risen Lord, who gave voice to the voiceless, hope to the abandoned and a place at God’s holy table for those despised and rejected. In the days following the Resurrection, Jesus addressed some of the male disciples who had gone fishing in a kind of “Let’s get back to normal” fashion. But the fishermen on the shores of the Galilee were coming up empty. Jesus had to redirect their attention to what it looked like to follow the Risen God, the God of the Living. “Peter, son of John, do you love me……? Tend my sheep…feed my lambs…tend my sheep.” (John 21:15-17)
In other words, to follow Jesus means to dedicate ourselves to the actions and endeavors that demonstrate compassion and nurture for those whom Jesus had taught his followers to love: the poor, the outcasts, scorned women, the strangers, the immigrants, the wounded.
Spring municipal and primary elections are taking place throughout our diocese and state. Your voice is crucial in conversations that impact the well-being of our neighbors, our neighborhoods and our fragile earth. We are called in our holy texts to love one another, and the example Jesus offered us throughout his ministry was one of generosity, care and prioritizing the vulnerable.
We are mindful that levels of participation in these elections often trail those in the fall; we ask you to commit with us to honor our civic duty in the coming weeks and cast an informed vote in those elections where you are eligible.
Our responsibilities to our democracy and to each other are not defined by a single election every four years. Important decisions start in our communities when we vote for those who will represent our concerns on town councils, school boards and in a variety of other leadership positions.
As you prepare to vote, we encourage you to research your choices using multiple, reliable sources of information, beginning with the moral imperatives found in our Holy Scriptures and continuing with your own research. We have found the North Carolina Council of Churches and North Carolina Interfaith Power and Light helped in our own discernment.
Our decisions about who shapes our shared communities require wisdom and discernment. Investing our time in choosing candidates whose actions and backgrounds align with their promises is part of a thoughtful commitment to our electoral process.
Non-partisan information about upcoming elections, including early voting and one-stop registration, can be found at the North Carolina State Board of Elections. You can find your sample ballot at ncvoter.org.
The Rt. Rev. Sam Rodman
Bishop, Diocese of North Carolina
The Rt. Rev. Anne Hodges-Copple
Bishop Suffragan, Diocese of North Carolina