February 13th, 2008
01:40 PM ET
10 years ago

Catholic leader criticizes Clinton invite

(CNN) - The archbishop of San Antonio, Jose Gomez, released a statement Wednesday criticizing the decision of a Catholic university there to invite Hillary Clinton to address students, saying that she and other candidates in the race held positions on abortion and other issues that were incompatible with Church teachings.

Clinton is scheduled to speak at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio Wednesday evening. Gomez said he was surprised to learn of the planned event.

"It is not my intention to tell people for whom to vote," said Gomez. "However, I encourage Catholics to understand the teachings of the Church on the broad spectrum of public issues that are of great concern today.

"I urge the faculty and the ministry staff at St. Mary's University to continue to carry out their responsibility to educate their students in their political duty in accordance with the teachings of the Catholic Church."

Clinton has been counting on a strong showing in Texas, which votes March 4.

Both Hispanics and Catholics have been major voting blocs for Clinton this cycle. In most of the contests to date, the New York senator has won a decisive majority of both groups.

In a 2005 Time magazine profile of Gomez - one of the most prominent Latino Catholics in the region - his former boss, Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput, emphasized his clout with both church and state. Gomez, Chaput said, is someone who "gets listened to in the state of Texas."

–CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Texas
soundoff (107 Responses)
  1. California Independent

    I hope Bloomberg is watching the growing dislike of Obama.

    Run Mike Run

    February 13, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  2. Beverly, Houston

    TO: VT DEM

    Once again everybody. Obama did not bring up race. Furthermore,
    he is multi-racial, not black, and if all of you look into your ancestry back to the first woman (this has been proven) you are all part black.

    AND besides all that Hillary wants to turn us into a Socialist group.
    Mandated health care for everyone?????

    February 13, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  3. andy

    I am Catholic and Latino and Hillary clinton is my first choice and McCain is my second choice!

    February 13, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  4. Beverly, Houston

    TO: texas


    February 13, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  5. Beverly, Houston

    MI independent

    He has done a lot more than Hillary given the time he has been a Senator.

    February 13, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  6. ILoveAmerica

    Could someone tell me where in the Bible it says that Jesus ever tried to prevent any person from speaking in a certain place, on the grounds that the person's opinions were not just the same as Jesus' opinions?

    February 13, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  7. Beverly, Houston

    TO: RuthieM and all others

    PAY ATTENTION!!!!! Universal Health Care – (Socialism) Yuk!!!

    February 13, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  8. Catholic for Hillary!

    Oh gosh, here we go again. I am a life long practicing non-conservative Catholic, Hispanic Texan who believes in the teachings of the Catholic Church, but I am NOT a one-issue voter. I will not let any candidate sway me with their sweet words, the media nor will I allow the Catholic Church to try to tell me whom I should vote for.

    While Hillary may believe in a women’s right to choose she like many Catholics do not actually believe that abortion is a good thing. There will NEVER be a candidate who will represent all the teachings of the Catholic Church. While one candidate may be pro-life he may be for the death penalty and for cutting programs (such as CHIP) that help low income families and their children, and treat illegal immigrants as if they were worthless human beings.

    February 13, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  9. Liberal Lady

    It is too bad Hillary will be talking at a Catholic University. Why? The narrow interpretation of life issues on the part of Bishop Gomez and other ultraconservative bishops across the nation. Never mind this immoral war they never speak about, never mind all the dead and wounded soldier, civilians-women and children. When do you ever hear a homily about that? The bishops and most priests won't do it because the coffers won't have much coin, considering Catholics are not the givers Protestants are. All this to say that the Bishops themselves should be criticized for their own lack of courage. Anyway, who listens to a bishop today with the continuing sexual scandals.
    Hillary would best be served in a different arena.

    February 13, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  10. Jackie

    HILLARY 2008

    Enough said!!!!!!!!!!!


    February 13, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  11. Jason NYC

    Cafeteria-style christianity is nothing new.

    February 13, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  12. Beverly, Houston

    TO Frank:
    February 13th, 2008 3:35 pm ET

    Another CNN's pro Obama newsbitz. Did you noticed it – most of the headlines here are pro Obama? I'm Still waiting for CNN to post a positive headlines for Hillary

    That is because Barack Obama is smarter, more honest and does not flip-flop and do anything he can to get elected. An NO UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE – SOCIALISM!!!

    February 13, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  13. Wayne in NH

    I'm a Catholic. And the decisions I make in life are between me and God Not the church. It's funny the church never asked for my views on the right to choose when I make donations.

    I am voting for Obama 1st Clinton 2nd. We need stem cell research to find cures, we need to change the mindset of this country back to freedom of religion, That means I can worship as I wish , not how others think I should.

    February 13, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  14. Jared

    Hey I'm PRO LIFE because I support embryonic stem cell research I don't need some perceived moral neocons telling me how long I can or cannot live, so anyways I am PRO Life BECAUSE I am PRO CHOICE-got that bigots??

    February 13, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  15. John

    The archbishop needs to stay out of politics! Frankly, I have never heard of the man and don't really understand how he is so "influential."

    February 13, 2008 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  16. California Voter

    I believe both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have a pro-choice stand. And I believe she or Barack have a right to campaign on such a campus. Voters have to make their own choice when they vote. But if folks want to start talking religion, I would recommend going to the website of Barack's church – Trinity United Church of Christ.

    February 13, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  17. roger lodge

    i think the candidates should be able to speak anywhere to any audience since its the audiences individual right to vote and not the churchs right

    February 13, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  18. Just my 2 cents

    Mr Gomez. Get over yourself. Clean up your own house before making judgement. If we listen to you and teach our children to obey your every word, then we as a society will be just as guilty when the next child is molested by the likes of you.

    If we are to believe that you are Pro-Life, then why do you back people who are pro war which = death?

    What of the Crusades? Did that not also promote death to those who believed not in what you believe?

    February 13, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  19. Michelle From GEORGIA

    This is addressed to "Texas" Who challenged us to tell us why he/she should vote for Obama without using the words "Change or Hope" Funny but the fact that you dont use these words to describe your candidate makes me feel sorry for you. Change and Hope is exactly what we need right now as our country is torn apart by status que politcs that will only continue if Clinton wins. I challenge you to read about Obama and his stance on the issues. He has given much information on his policies and how he plans to implement his vision for the american people. Change and Hope is just the icing on the cake he wants us to help him bake. Inform yourself and dont just listen to the people who DONT want hope or change. They will keep this country just like it is now. Think for yourself.

    February 13, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  20. efra

    I'm Latino, I'm a democrat, and you bet I'm for freedom of speech, I think senator Clinton should be let to talk there; keep in mind that, schools and church buildings are the to serve the community. shame Archbishop Gomez is forgetting one of the principal teachings of the bible: share.
    I'm an Obama supporter, but I'm yet to hear how is he going to manage the immigration issue....I mean somebody has to stop the physical abuse and psychological intimidation the undocumented workers are subjected by ICE (immigration police).

    February 13, 2008 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  21. mjoy

    Archbishop please remember that it is also a sin to sexually abuse boys, girls and men and women and many of us still go to church -and John McCain supports stem-cell research so now what? Obama and Clinton are both pro-choice... and it appears that at least the Dems want people to live their whole lives as best they can and NOT DIE IN WARS that are unjust !!!

    PLEASE if anyone needs to be still and know GOD is GOD it is the ROMAN CATHOLIC church... pull out the log in your eye before you start up this insanity... informed conscience the best kept secret of the Catholic Church... people are smart enough to figure it out!

    GO HILLARY SPEAK TO THE physicans, nurses, staff, and CEO's about universal healthcare at ST. MARY's and be heard and be well!!!!

    CLINTON '08, 44th President of the USA!

    February 13, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  22. NANCY

    AS FOR "CHOICE"......if men had the baby's.....I bet their thoughts on abortiion would be different. I am conflicted about it but "it is" a womans right.....especially in the case of rape, incest and when the pregnancy would be detremental to her health or life or other children that would be made motherless if she died in giving birth.....

    February 13, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  23. Charlotte

    I am Pro-life, Pro-choice but above all Pro-tection. The decision to abort or not is a very personal decision however, I'm glad women have the right to choose. The church has a position on this, but we must not go back to back alley bucher shops.

    February 13, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  24. Catholic in MD

    If we strictly follow Catholic teachings we can't vote for anyone. The Democratic candidates are pro-choice and Republican candidates tend to support capital punishment. Sometimes there is no clear candidate to support and still follow Catholic teachings.

    February 13, 2008 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  25. justin

    If the ArchBishop had reported that about Obama, no major news media outlet would have even acknowledged it.

    Give me a break.

    February 13, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
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