Church wants database of questions for politicians

The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Latvia (ELCL) has called on its members to bear in mind Christian values when voting in the upcoming general elections.

The church said in a press release July 10 that it was urging members to ask questions about the matters important to Lutherans during the election campaign, to study the election programs and to make their choice in the elections "in line with the teachings of the Bible and the Church".

The ELCL underlined that in Latvia the church was separated from the state and since 1998 it had been recommending the clergymen to abstain from voicing their opinion about the political parties and politicians when speaking in the church or wearing robes as well as to make sure that nobody else used the church for political campaigning.

At the same time, the members of the ELCL are the Latvian citizens and have the right and the obligation to vote in the elections, the church said.

However, the church also signalled that there will be a collective approach rather than leaving things as a mater of pure individual conscience by inviting Lutherans to email the church with questions which it "intends to collect and ask parties who have submitted themselves to the 13th Saeima elections."

Such an approach will help believers "to make a well-considered and responsible decision," the ELCL claimed.

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