Kerry snubs cardinal on DNC blessing

July 26, 2004 at 12:50 PM

BOSON, Mass., July 26 (UPI) -- The Democratic Party is asking a Paulist priest instead of the archbishop of Boston to bless its national convention, the Boston Globe reported Monday.

The campaign of Democratic presumptive presidential candidate John Kerry has announced that it has asked the Rev. John B. Ardis, director of the Paulist Center, to deliver the traditional invocation at the four-day national convention beginning Monday night, the Globe said.

Kerry spokesperson Stephanie Cutter told the newspaper that the campaign had not asked the Catholic archbishop of Boston, Cardinal Sean O'Malley to give the blessing. "We never reached out to Archbishop O'Malley to deliver the invocation," Cutter said. "We are seeking to arrange having (the priest) from the Paulist Center to deliver the invocation since that is John Kerry's home church."

Prominent church leaders over the past 20 years have often either declined to speak to Democratic conventions or delivered controversial invocations at them. "The Catholic Church teaches that abortion is never morally acceptable," the Boston Globe said. "The proposed Democratic Party platform this year declares 'abortion should be safe, legal and rare.'"

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