Dakotas-Minnesota Area Bishop Bruce R. Ough is among more than 50 U.S.-based bishops who signed a statement on Faith and Democracy, calling on the people of The United Methodist Church to support voter registration and encouraging people to vote in the Nov. 3 elections.
Council of Bishops President Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey made it clear that the statement is not a statement of or from the Council of Bishops but is a conciliar statement by United Methodist Bishops living in the United States.
“We are not speaking FOR the church, but TO the church, in this context. In our journey toward dismantling racism, a core practice is the history of voter suppression and the encouragement of the right to vote. We seek to ground this in our tradition and in the present moment,” said Bishop Harvey.
The statement noted that the U.S. was undergoing a national crisis precipitated by the COVID-19 pandemic and racism, and the economic consequences of both.
“In these crises we are reminded that our religious faith and our nation’s principles support elections that faithfully reflect the will of the American people. Our faith in God who created all people in the divine image, and our hope that our nation can live into the aspirations of our founding ideals, lead us to pledge ourselves to the fullest expansion of this right to vote,” the statement said.
Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church