With an election looming the bombardment of our senses with political spin has begun. For many people trying to work through the campaign spin and listen for reasonable and sound policies which may in fact bear some element of the good news of Jesus Christ is more than just a little difficult. For others the ability to think beyond traditionally held political loyalties is almost unimaginable, especially for those of us who are card-carrying members of a particular party.
The myth that politics and religion don’t mix is contrived and ignores Jesus’ own life, but how they mix and what that means as we approach our Federal Election is a more difficult issue. If we are to take seriously our call as Jesus’ disciples this call transcends our national and party political loyalties.
At the 12th Assembly of the Uniting Church the Assembly produced a document entitled An Economy of Life: Re-imaging Human Progress for a Flourishing World. This challenging document raises serious issues about the assumptions prevalent in our current economic systems in relationship to the gift of God in Christ, “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”
The Assembly has now produced a document entitled An Economy of Life: The 2010 Election which draws on the issues outlined in the above paper to help us think about how we exercise our vote in the light of the gospel. It asserts:
“Christians have a responsibility to actively engage in the political processes of their country. As Christians, however, we have a particular responsibility to think about how we do this in a way that answers the call to be good news in the world: to bring justice, peace and hope to those processes and to seek justice, peace and hope as outcomes.”
These documents do not tell people who to vote for but raise the issue of how our faith may guide our considerations. These documents may be accessed through the Assembly website http://nat.uca.org.au/election2010.html or by contacting the Kairos Office.