Pope hopes to avoid U.S. election-year politics

Posted April 10, 2008

By The Washington Times
April 10, 2008

NEW YORK - Organizers of Pope Benedict XVI's visit to the United States next week have taken great pains to keep him out of presidential politics.

But the Roman Catholic teaching he's expected to emphasize — on abortion, human rights and other issues — has policy consequences that partisans will inevitably spin for their own ends.

Catholics United Welcomes Pope Benedict’s Message of Hope to the American People

Posted April 09, 2008

Catholics United executive director Chris Korzen issued the following statement today welcoming Pope Benedict XVI's message “to Catholics and People of the United States of America on the Occasion of the Upcoming Apostolic Journey," released April 8, 2008:

"At a time when our country is in great need of healing and unity, Catholics United welcomes Pope Benedict's message of hope. We believe this message will find strong resonance Americans of all political stripes and faith traditions in this election year, Americans who desperately hunger for a 'post-partisan' public debate that moves our nation beyond division and fear and reclaims a sense of profound concern for the common good."

"In putting forth the Gospel's timeless call to love one another, Pope Benedict's message offers a powerfully relevant solution to the core problems of our day: partisanship, materialism, and the culture of going it alone. We sincerely hope our leaders will take this message to heart, and help Americans work together to build a nation and a world in which all human beings can reach their full and true potential."

View the full text of Pope Benedict's message: http://www.uspapalvisit.org/stories/vmessage.htm

The Convention for the Common Good

Posted April 03, 2008

This July, Catholic social justice activists and leaders will gather in Philadelphia for an historic meeting, the "Convention for the Common Good." From July 11-13, some 600 representatives of organizations like ours will begin charting a course for the future of our movement, and planning efforts to raise up the important moral issues of our day in the coming elections - issues like war, poverty, and the climate crisis. The convention will culminate the ratification of a "Platform for the Common Good," which we will take to both the Republican and Democratic parties.

We're asking our members to represent Catholics United as delegates to the convention.

Catholics United delegates will join activists from across the country in helping to set our national agenda for the common good. They'll also have the opportunity to represent the concerns of Catholics in your community at this historic event, and to be members of Catholics United's "Platform for the Common Good" leadership committee.

For more information on the Convention for the Common Good, visit www.commongoodconvention.org.

Legal Counselor to Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush Endorses Barack Obama

Posted March 26, 2008

Pro-Life Republican Douglas Kmiec Cites Iraq War, Need for Unity

In a move that sent shockwaves through the pro-life community, Professor Doug Kmiec, a well-known Catholic legal scholar and anti-abortion advocate, broke the Bush administration and U.S. Sen. John McCain this week by endorsing Sen. Barack Obama for President. In an editorial on Slate.com, Kmiec pointed to the War in Iraq and Obama’s ability to “move the nation beyond its religious and racial divides” as reasons for the endorsement.

“Kmiec’s endorsement reflects a fundamental shift that is occurringin the conservative movement and among Catholics in particular,” said Chris Korzen, executive director of Catholics United and co-author of the forthcoming book A Nation for All: How the Catholic Vision of the Common Good Can Save America from the Politics of Division. “Americans of all political persuasions are tired of the scorched-earth policies of the Bush Administration, and are desperate for leaders who can unite our country behind a sense of greater purpose.”

Catholics Ask President Bush to Pray for Forgiveness, Not Defend his Reckless War Policy in Iraq

Posted March 11, 2008

As President Bush defended his foreign policies to religious broadcasters today, Catholics United renewed its call for a new direction in Iraq. To date, nearly 20,000 Catholics have signed a “Catholics for an End to the War in Iraq” petition (www.catholicsforanend.org) calling for “an immediate and responsible end to the Iraq War.”

The president’s address – given at the Convention of Religious Broadcasters in Nashville – is billed as the first in a series of speeches designed to shore up flagging public support for the war. But despite continued attempts to portray the conflict as a moral imperative, faith communities, including the Catholic Church and the president’s own United Methodist Church, have maintained a consistent opposition to Bush’s questionable war.

Prior to the invasion of Iraq, both Pope John Paul II and the U.S. Catholic Bishops voiced what the bishops referred to as “Grave moral concerns about military intervention in Iraq and the unpredictable and uncontrollable negative consequences of invasion and occupation.” The United Methodists expressed concerns that the war was undertaken “without any justification according to the teachings of Christ.”

Catholics United Welcomes McCain’s Comments on Anti-Catholicism, Continues to Call for Rejection of Hagee Endorsement

Posted March 07, 2008

On Friday, March 7, 2008, Senator John McCain responded to Catholics United and a growing chorus of concerned Americans by renouncing controversial televangelist John Hagee’s anti-Catholic comments. Catholics United is now asking Senator McCain to finish the job and reject this endorsement.

John Hagee is a prominent Texas pastor who has referred to the Catholic Church as "the Great Whore," calling it a "false cult system" and "the apostate church." Hagee has also compared women to terrorists and dogs, and made light of slavery. In 2006, he argued that Hurricane Katrina was an act of retribution from God for a "homosexual parade" in New Orleans. Pastor Hagee also advocates immediate war Iran and an end to the peace process in the Middle East.

“We applaud Senator McCain for clearly repudiating Hagee’s anti-Catholic sentiments. But the fact is that the senator still remains ‘proud’ to receive this endorsement,” said Chris Korzen, executive director of Catholics United. “By publicly accepting and celebrating this endorsement, McCain is sending a signal that he tolerates these extremist positions. Hagee has offended many groups besides Catholics. The best way for him to move forward is by simply rejecting his endorsement.”

In his comments to the press on Friday, McCain said that he had been hearing from many Catholics who find Hagee’s comments offensive. This week more than 1,000 Catholics United members emailed Senator McCain asking him to stand for his convictions and reject this endorsement.

Ask Senator McCain to Reject Pastor John Hagee's Endorsement

Posted March 03, 2008

Catholics United is calling on is members to ask Senator John McCain to reject an endorsement from controversial pastor John Hagee, who has made comments offensive to many Catholics. Instead of distancing himself from these anti-Catholic comments and rejecting the endorsement, Senator McCain said he was honored by Pastor Hagee's support.

Click here to send John McCain an email and ask him to stand up for his convictions and reject this endorsement.

Senator John McCain Under Fire Over Texas Pastor's Endorsement

Posted February 29, 2008

By Libby Quaid -- CBS Broadcasting
February 29, 2008

NEW YORK (CBS) ― Today, it was Republican frontrunner John McCain's turn to answer mounting questions about one of his supporters, the Rev. John Hagee, a San Antonio pastor a worldwide broadcast ministry, reports CBS News senior political correspondent Jeff Greenfield.

Hagee has offered some highly provocative views on a variety of subjects.

Catholics United Asks John McCain to Distance Himself from Anti-Catholic Bigotry

Posted February 28, 2008

Catholics United has issued a letter to the John McCain campaign asking him to publicly distance himself from Pastor John Hagee's anti-Catholic rhetoric and reject his endorsement.

On Wednesday, Senator John McCain was “honored” to receive the endorsement of the Evangelical pastor John Hagee. Pastor Hagee is well known for his anti-Catholic rhetoric such as past suggestions that the Catholic Church gave Adolf Hitler inspiration and support for the Holocaust. In a letter to John McCain’s campaign, Catholics United is asking the Senator to distance himself from Pastor Hagee’s anti-Catholic comments and reject the endorsement.

McCain Endorsement Angers Catholic League President

Posted February 28, 2008

By Michael D. Shear - The Washington Post
February 28, 2008

HOUSTON -- The president of the Catholic League today blasted Sen. John McCain for accepting the endorsement of Texas evangelicalist John Hagee, calling the controversial pastor a bigot who has "waged an unrelenting war against the Catholic Church."

Hagee, who is known for his crusading support of Israel, backed McCain's presidential bid Wednesday, standing next to the senator at a hotel in San Antonio and calling McCain "a man of principle."