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Denver archbishop stirs up blogs with remarks on Obama

Jean Torkelson
Rocky Mountain News

DENVER, Colorado – Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput told a Canadian audience this week that some Catholics are treating President Barack Obama with a “spirit of adulation bordering on servility.”

“In democracies, we elect public servants, not messiahs,” he said.

Chaput also warned that an overly deferential attitude toward Obama makes the political situation “very hard for Catholics in the United States.”



Chaput delivered a lecture Monday night at a church on the campus of the University of Toronto. His remarks, reported by the Catholic News Agency, were picked up by blogs and nationally watched Web sites, such as the Drudge Report.

Chaput could not be reached for comment late Wednesday.



He was in Toronto to promote his book, Render Unto Caesar, which discusses how Catholics should bring their faith into public life.

In the presidential election, 54 percent of Catholics voted for Obama, who is pro-choice on abortion, which is condemned by the Catholic Church.

“President Obama is a man of intelligence and some remarkable gifts. He has a great ability to inspire, as we saw from his very popular visit to Canada just this past week. But whatever his strengths, there’s no way to reinvent his record on abortion and related issues with rosy marketing about unity, hope and change,” the Catholic News Agency quoted Chaput as saying.



“Americans, including many Catholics, elected a gifted man to fix an economic crisis. That’s the mandate. They gave nobody a mandate to retool American culture on the issues of marriage and the family, sexuality, bioethics, religion in public life and abortion,” he said.


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