Rev. Thomas J. Euteneuer, STL, president of Human Life International and a Catholic priest, challenged Pastor Rick Warren of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, CA to reconsider his participation in the upcoming inaugural ceremonies for President-elect Barack Obama.
In a statement issued December 19, Rev. Euteneuer said “We applaud Pastor Warren’s support of pro-life causes as well as his defense of traditional marriage,” said Father Euteneuer. “This is why we are concerned that his high-profile and explicitly Christian prayerful invocation at President-elect Obama’s inauguration may be perceived as an endorsement, even a blessing, of what will likely be the most anti-life administration in the history of this country.”
President-elect Obama has promised to sign into law the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA), which pro-life advocates see as a massive assault on the dignity of life. He is also widely expected to reverse
President George W. Bush’s executive order reinstating the Mexico City Policy, which prevents funding of international groups and programs that advocate abortion, as well as funding to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) which, among other assaults on life, has been demonstrated to support coercive “family planning” measures in China, including forced abortions and sterilizations.
“President-elect Obama has given every indication that he has no respect for the lives of the unborn, and whenever given the opportunity, has promised to enforce the most extreme demands of anti-life groups,” said Father Euteneuer. “This extremist agenda should not be seen to have the endorsement of pro-life leaders such as Pastor Warren.”
“I respect the personal relationship that Pastor Warren has with Mr. Obama,” said Father Euteneuer. “But such a public and explicitly Christian endorsement as this invocation is certainly confusing to those who know Mr. Obama’s record on life issues. We respectfully ask Pastor Warren to reconsider his participation in the inaugural ceremonies, given Mr. Obama’s extremist anti-life views.”
So what does St. Francis of Assisi have to say about all this?
"There should be no brother or sister in the whole world who has fallen into sin, no matter how far they have fallen, who will ever fail to find your forgiveness for the asking, if they will only look into your eyes. And if they do not ask forgiveness, you should ask them if they want it. And should they appear before you a thousand times, you should love them more than you love me, so that you may draw them to God; you should always have pity on such people..."