I think the Archbishop's comments are right on. See what you think...
Chaput calls Catholics servile toward Obama
By Electa Draper
The Denver Post
Posted: 02/26/2009 12:16:17 PM MST
Updated: 02/26/2009 03:56:32 PM MST
Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput (Post file)
Denver Catholic Archbishop Charles Chaput, on a book tour in Canada this week, stirred controversy with remarks about U.S. Catholics, who he says exhibit "a spirit of adulation bordering on servility" toward President Barack Obama, an abortion-rights advocate.
"In democracies, we elect public servants, not messiahs," Chaput told more than 700 people in St. Basil's Church on the University of Toronto campus, the Catholic News Agency reported.
Reaction lit up cyberspace, and it ranged from admiration for his defense of Catholic doctrine on sanctity of life to furious perceptions that Chaput is insulting Catholic Democrats and improperly meddling in politics.
Chaput's speech focused on his new book on faithful citizenship, "Render Unto Caesar."
He called Obama "a man of intelligence and some remarkable gifts" who has great ability to inspire.
"But whatever his strengths," Chaput said, "there's no way to reinvent his record on abortion and related issues with rosy marketing about unity, hope and change."
Chaput said that modern society has "a phony unwillingness to offend that poses as prudence and good manners but too often turns out to be cowardice."
Echoing remarks Chaput made before Obama's election in November, the archbishop said that Catholics must form a strong and genuinely Catholic conscience and follow that conscience when they vote. He has called opposition to abortion the litmus test for being Catholic.
"Tolerating grave evil within a society by itself is a form of serious evil," Chaput said.
Many Colorado Catholics reacted angrily during the election season to what they perceived as church attempts to coerce them into being one-issue voters.
Chaput said Americans focused on one issue, the economy.
"It's worth recalling that despite two ugly wars, an unpopular Republican president, a fractured Republican Party, the support of most of the American news media and massively outspending his opponent, our new president actually trailed in the election polls the week before the economic meltdown," Chaput said.
"Americans, including many Catholics, elected a gifted man to fix an economic crisis. That's the mandate," Chaput said. "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."