CHICAGO, Jan. 7 (UPI) -- Chicago's Catholic Cardinal Francis George has apologized for linking the gay pride parade to the Ku Klux Klan.
"I am truly sorry for the hurt my remarks have caused," George said Friday in an interview with the Chicago Tribune. "Particularly because we all have friends or family members who are gay and lesbian. This has evidently wounded a good number of people. I have family members myself who are gay and lesbian, so it's part of our lives. So I'm sorry for the hurt."
George's comments came during a dispute over a new route for the parade that would have potentially disrupted concurrent church services at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in the Lakeview neighborhood, the Tribune reported.
"You know, you don't want the gay liberation movement to morph into something like the Ku Klux Klan, demonstrating in the streets against Catholicism," George told WFLD-TV, Chicago, in December.
The dispute was resolved in December, when parade organizers agreed to change the start time of the event.
"When I was talking, I was speaking out of fear that I have for the church's liberty and I was reaching for an analogy which was very inappropriate, for which I'm sorry," George said. "I didn't realize the impact of what I was saying. ... Sometimes fear is a bad motivation."