Across the United States, Catholic sisters are encouraging people to sign up to vote. Humility of Mary Sister Ann McManamon, the director of Dorothy Day House of Hospitality in Youngstown Ohio, has her volunteers registering votes to vote three days a week, according to a piece by Global Sisters Report.
Though the numbers they have registered is small, McManamon stresses the importance of “making an individual aware of their dignity and that they’re very much worth the time spent in the conversation. We let them know they are the voting power in this country”.
In Philadelphia, the Franciscan Action Network, which has published three videos encouraging people to vote this year. Sister Marie Lucey, their associate director, has said that America doesn’t “have a good history of voting”. She cites Pope Francis, who has said how “important it is for people to be involved in politics… He said very clearly we have a responsibility to vote”.
Sr. Quincy Howard, a government relations specialist at Network Lobby for Catholic Social Justice, struck a more political tone. Attacking voting rights “is definitely not a new phenomenon — all the tactics that have been happening have been happening for decades, mainly to people of color,” she argued. “What’s new is the pandemic and the scale of the attacks. Now they’re much more indiscriminate. The pandemic has opened up all those tactics to be applied on a scale that is quite disturbing.”