Democratic Party Won’t Invite Catholic Bishop Who Urged Pro-Life Voting
by Steven Ertelt
August 21, 2008
Denver, CO (LifeNews.com) — The Democratic Party is refusing to invite the highest ranking Catholic official to its national convention that begins next week. Denver Archbishop Charles J. Chaput is the leader of the largest religious denomination in Colorado but he won’t take part in the convention.
Democratic officials have invited other Catholics to the convention — most of whom walk on the liberal side of the political spectrum. The party is going as far as flying in Greek Orthodox Archbishop Demetrios from New York.
But Chaput isn’t getting an invitation — and it likely stems from his comments saying faithful Catholics should obey the Church’s pro-life teachings and not support candidates, like Obama, who support abortion.
Chaput took the decision in stride and told the Washington Times he did not take it personally.
"I’m happy to see they are having prayer at their sessions," he said, "and they have a right to choose whom they want to do that."
Instead of participating in the Democratic convention, Chaput will join a pro-life rally that will feature several pro-life African-American leaders.
Raymond Flynn, a pro-life Democrat who was the mayor of Boston and later the Vatican ambassador, blasted the decision in comments to the Washington Times.
He called the decision not to invite Chaput "a serious oversight."
"Chaput is arguably the most respected leader of the Catholic Church in America," he said. "His record is a strong commitment to social and economic justice and the principles of the Catholic faith. He’s also a strong patriot."
"Pro-life Democrats who are proud Catholics like myself feel this is an insult to our values," Flynn told the Times. "The Democratic Party has already driven millions of faithful Catholics to the GOP — what they are doing now will continue that mass exodus."
In February, Archbishop Chaput said pro-life Catholics have an obligation to have their voting decisions match their views — which should match the Church’s.
"If we believe in the sanctity of life from conception to natural death, we need to prove that by our actions, including our political choices," the Archbishop said. "Anything less leads to the corruption of our integrity."
"The ‘choice’ in abortion always involves the choice to end the life of an unborn human being," Archbishop Chaput said. "For anyone who sees this fact clearly, neutrality, silence or private disapproval are not options. They are evils almost as grave as abortion itself.
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