Letter from Archbishop Vigneron to the Faithful Regarding Proposal 3

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September 16, 2022

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

We are less than two months from the November 8 election, during which voters in Michigan will decide on an issue of paramount importance to protecting the inherent, God-given dignity of all people.

Abortion advocates under “Reproductive Freedom For All” seek to amend the state constitution to allow unregulated abortion on demand through all nine months of pregnancy. This effort, primarily funded by out-of-state dollars, is spearheaded by Planned Parenthood and the ACLU. It will appear on the ballot as Proposal 3.

The implications of this proposal are vast and extreme. If passed, the proposal’s vague wording would result in the elimination of dozens of Michigan laws relating to abortion, including: laws prohibiting partial-birth abortion and taxpayer-funded abortion; laws requiring parental consent and informed consent for abortion; laws protecting the conscience rights of persons who refuse to participate in abortion, and more. The proposal would prohibit lawsuits from being brought against any individual for performing an abortion, even when complications result from the procedure.

Proposal 3 is not about protecting existing rights, but rather about revoking the right to life for an untold number of human beings.

This is a grave offense to the dignity and sanctity of unborn, innocent human life. As people of faith who witness to the Good News of Jesus Christ and His teachings, we fervently oppose this deadly proposal and are taking action to defeat it. On behalf of the Catholic dioceses of Michigan, including the Archdiocese of Detroit, the Michigan Catholic Conference earlier this year partnered with Right to Life Michigan and other pro-life organizations to form a coalition called Citizens to Support MI Women and Children to oppose and, ultimately, to defeat this dangerous proposal.

In support of these efforts, I offer you three invitations to act:

PRAY: As advocates for the sanctity of life and truth, we always begin with prayer. Let us pray that our fellow Catholics and all people of goodwill will reject Proposal 3 in recognition of the danger it poses for women, children, and their families. To assist in our prayer, I will be celebrating Mass at 11 a.m. October 2 at the Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament, in gratitude to the Sacred Heart of Jesus for the gift of all human life. I hope to see you there.

VOTE: As faithful citizens, we look forward to casting our votes on November 8. Catholics in the Archdiocese of Detroit are called to uphold the inherent dignity of all people by voting against Proposal 3, rejecting its “anything goes” approach to the destruction of human life. To vote in favor of this proposal would be to actively participate in the promotion and expansion of the intrinsic moral evil of abortion.

GIVE: As members of a family of faith, we can spread awareness among Catholics, practicing or otherwise, and others about the true nature of Proposal 3 and its consequences for life, women, families, and children. You can do this in part by discussing it with family, friends, and members of your community, but your reach will grow exponentially through your support of the statewide coalition dedicated to preventing this proposal from distorting our state constitution. I invite you to visit supportmiwomenandchildren.org to learn more about the amendment, view a list of the dozens of laws it would impact, and consider a financial contribution to these efforts.

As we protect and defend life from the moment of conception through natural death, we must at the same time accompany and support women experiencing difficult or unintended pregnancies. That is why the pro-life office of the Archdiocese of Detroit is working with our parishes and Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan, the charitable arm of the archdiocese, to redouble efforts to provide assistance and resources to women and families across the region, especially through initiatives like Walking With Moms in Need. We cannot create a world where abortion is unthinkable without also creating a world in which all families receive the support they need. This work of mercy is critical and continuous. Together, we are building a culture of life where vulnerable families are given the help and support they need to choose and sustain life. For more information on these efforts, please visit aod.org/prolife.

Please join me in praying that this destructive proposal is defeated, and that Catholics and others use their votes to uphold the right to life and the inherent dignity of all people. Let us always have confidence in Jesus Christ, who has triumphed over death and invites us to this work of accomplishing God’s will in our midst.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

The Most Reverend Allen H. Vigneron

Archbishop of Detroit