On the heels of Cardinal Timothy Dolan’s request yesterday that presidential candidates Barack Obama and Mitt Romney sign a “civility pledge” as they head into their respective parties conventions, today the Archdiocese of New York has announced that Cardinal Dolan will deliver the closing benediction at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina next week.
Cardinal Dolan is already slated to say the closing prayer at the Republican National Convention in Tampa on Thursday. Dolan’s acceptance of the GOP invitation had been seen by some as a partisan move (Andrew Sullivan described it as “the de facto endorsement of the Romney-Ryan ticket by the Catholic hierarchy”) despite Dolan’s claim that he would be equally willing to appear at the DNC.
From the Catholic News Herald, the newspaper for the Diocese of Charlotte:
Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York, the head of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, has accepted an accepted an invitation to deliver the closing prayer at next week’s Democratic National Convention, according to a statement from Archdiocese of New York spokesman Joseph Zwilling.
It was made clear to the Democratic National Convention organizers, as it was to the Republicans, that the cardinal was coming solely as a pastor, only to pray, not to endorse any party, platform, or candidate.
The cardinal consulted Bishop Peter Jugis of the Diocese of Charlotte, who gave the cardinal his consent to take part in the convention that will be taking place in his diocese.
The cardinal has not endorsed either candidate in the 2012 presidential race.
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