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August 23rd, 2012
09:17 AM ET

Cardinal Dolan to offer closing prayer at Republican Convention

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - Roman Catholic Cardinal Timothy Dolan, America’s highest-profile Catholic official, will deliver the closing prayer at next week’s Republican convention, in another sign of how important the Catholic vote is expected to be this year.

The Archdiocese of New York confirmed Dolan’s role on Wednesday night, after it was reported by The Associated Press. News of Dolan's role initially came in an interview of presumed GOP nominee Mitt Romney by EWTN, a Catholic television network, which is scheduled to air Thursday night.

Dolan is the president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, the church’s U.S. arm, and has been an outspoken critic of the Obama administration’s rule requiring insurance companies to grant employees no-cost contraception coverage.

The Catholic Church opposes contraception and wants Catholic hospitals, colleges and other institutions to be exempt from the law.

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The bishops have also been critical of the Republican budget crafted by Rep. Paul Ryan, Romney's running mate.

A spokesman for Dolan said convention protocol calls for the local bishop to deliver such a prayer, meaning the slot would have normally gone to a Florida bishop, but that the Republican convention’s organizers insisted on Dolan’s participation.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

“The Cardinal made it clear to the RNC (and to the Democratic National Committee as well) that he was only there to offer a prayer, not to engage in any partisan politics,” the spokesman, Joseph Zwilling, said in an e-mail, “and that he would be willing to accept a similar invitation from the DNC if they were to invite him to pray at their Convention as well.”

Catholics are considered the quintessential swing vote, and no presidential candidate has won the White House without winning that bloc since at least the early 1990s.

Millions of middle-of-the-road Catholic voters populate key swing states like Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: 2012 Election • Catholic Church • Politics

soundoff (696 Responses)
  1. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer really changes things ,

    August 24, 2012 at 6:49 am |
    • Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

      See prayer change things at prolapsed.net.

      August 24, 2012 at 10:02 am |
    • Jesus

      Prayer does not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!~

      August 24, 2012 at 10:32 am |
  2. RMBruton

    Since Romney will undoubtedly be put forth as the nominee, wouldn't it make more sense to have a Mormon give the benediction?

    August 23, 2012 at 11:45 pm |
    • Timzer

      You can't use the word "sense" in that context. Sorry.
      Allowing any religious idiot to speak of his insanity will never be a sensible thing to do.
      It would only make sense to avoid listening to him in some way or in stopping him some other way.

      August 24, 2012 at 3:34 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      >>>".... or in stopping him some other way."

      Is that a bit of "final solution" type of speech? Please clarify what your "other way" means.

      Thanks

      August 24, 2012 at 3:39 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      And if he did have a Mormon preacher, the left would be all over him for"Mormonizing" the election. How about honoring the inclusion of diversity this represents?

      August 24, 2012 at 8:58 am |
    • *facepalm*

      They're all different flavors of the same mythology ... how is that diverse? That's like the KKK saying they're diverse because some people are of German descent while other members are Austrian.

      August 25, 2012 at 1:38 am |
  3. Reality

    THE HIGHLIGHTS OF THE DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION-

    THE ACCEPTANCE SPEECH by BARACK OBAMA

    "I want to again thank the Immoral Majority that now rules the land and will do so in the foreseeable future. Without the votes of the Immoral Majority i.e. the 70+ million "mothers and fathers" of aborted womb-babies, I would not have been elected President. I am assured that their current membership of 78 million voters will easily make me president once again. "

    Followed by the closing prayer by Bill Clinton:

    "I ALSO DID NOT HAVE SE-X WITH THOSE OTHER WOMEN !!!

    August 23, 2012 at 11:38 pm |
  4. therealpeace2all

    This was posted earlier on page #2 of this article by @ChristardMingle.com

    Thought it was worth reposting-

    ChristardMingle.com
    Republican Convention Agenda Just Released!
    2012 Republican National Convention Schedule –Tampa, FL.

    4:00 PM – Opening Prayers and Massages Administered by Rev. Ted Haggard
    4:05 PM – Presentation of Confederate Colors
    4:10 PM – Pledge of Allegiance to Kolob
    4:15 PM – Invocation of Paul Ryan's great bod.
    4:30 PM – George W. Bush Speech on Legacy of Peace and Prosperity, Canceled
    4:45 PM – Dick Cheney Instructional Seminar on Waterboarding, Canceled
    5:00 PM – Karl Rove Speech on Government Accountability, Canceled
    5:15 PM – Tribute to the U.S. Const.i.tution, Canceled
    5:30 PM – VP Beauty Contest and Swimsuit Compet.i.tion, featuring Sarah Palin and Rudy Giuliani
    5:45 PM – Tribute Film to Mitt Romney’s Houses
    6:00 PM – Free Jack Abramoff Pep Rally
    6:15 PM – Free Tom DeLay Pep Rally
    6:30 PM – Free Ted Stevens Pep Rally
    6:45 PM – Invocation of John Paul Ryan's great bod.
    7:00 PM – VP Briefing Session: The Busy Mom's Guide to Battling Islamic Terrorism
    7:15 PM – Larry Craig "Family Values" Lecture and Toe-Tapping Exhibition
    7:30 PM – Restroom Break
    7:45 PM – Invitation to "Strip Down and Get Relaxed," delivered by Mark Foley via Instant Message
    8:00 PM – Lecture on the Effectiveness of Abstinence-Only Education – Sarah Palin
    8:15 PM – Accidental Reference to "Mormons"
    8:30 PM – Tribute to a "Nation of Whiners" – Paul Ryan
    8:45 PM – Invocation of Paul Ryan's great bod.
    9:00 PM – Group Sing–Along: "Bomb Bomb Bomb, Bomb Bomb Iran"
    9:15 PM – Mitt Romney Endorsement of Corporate Greed
    9:30 PM – Joke Interlude: Paul Ryan Tells the One About the Lawyer and the Catfish
    9:45 PM – Rallying Call to "Drill Here, Drill Now," Followed by Unveiling of an Oil Rig on Speaker's Platform
    10:00 PM – Halliburton Seminar: Profiting from the Next 100 Years of War in the Middle East
    11:00 PM – Mitt Romney Acceptance Speech and Plea to Delegates to "drive more Cadillacs and help Detroit like I did"
    11:30 PM – Closing Invocation of Paul Ryan's great bod.
    12:00 AM – Rapture and Farewell to Earth as we know it

    August 23, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse | Reply

    ________________________________________________________________________________________________

    LMFAO !!! 😀

    Peace...

    August 23, 2012 at 10:11 pm |
  5. Leslie

    CARDINAL DOLAN: What ROMNEY doesn't want you to know is the fact that he was heavily invested with BAIN in a MEDICAL WASTE DISPOSAL Co. that disposed of ABORTED FETUSES! The company name is STERICYCLE and it was found on Government record. The ugly truth will all be out soon!
    What do the CATHOLICS have to say about that??? Are they going to sweep that under as well??

    August 23, 2012 at 7:47 pm |
    • profit

      @Leslie
      What do they. the RCC, have to say about that? They have to keep a lot of things secret to keep the sheep from deserting the flock, too many to mention, but headline in the business press....
      Shhhh! The Vatican has received a report on financial transparency, but it is secret.
      Not to mention the best place to be a pedophile in the past is where?

      August 23, 2012 at 8:18 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Leslie

      Well, somebody has to dispose of those dead people... why shouldn't it be Mitt's company, and make a profit to boot ?

      It's the American way ?

      Peace...

      August 23, 2012 at 10:15 pm |
    • chris16

      nut didn't mitt baptism them?

      August 24, 2012 at 12:18 am |
    • Mark From Middle River

      >>>"Not to mention the best place to be a pedophile in the past is where?"

      Since a Democrat was just caught having adult relations with 17 year old boy at Rest Stops..... Sounds like for Dems, the New Jersey turnpike is the new pickup stop

      August 24, 2012 at 3:43 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Who will purge the protected pedophiles from the Democratic party? Why is the media covering this up?

      August 24, 2012 at 8:59 am |
    • WDinDallas

      Invested or ran the company?

      August 24, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  6. Gino

    How clever of Romney. If Willard wins, you can bet Dolan will find a place as an advisor to the President, to make sure that any suspect social legislation is looked at through religious glasses Onward christian soldiers...

    August 23, 2012 at 7:42 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      I can't think of a finer scenario for our country

      August 24, 2012 at 9:00 am |
    • *facepalm*

      @Bill, if you want a theocracy, please feel free to found your own. There are several excellent theocratic models in the middle east you could use as an example. Oh, and do make sure to bring back witch trials as well – they're so entertaining!

      August 25, 2012 at 1:43 am |
  7. profit

    Nice outfit the cardinal is wearing, right in line with the oppulent performance that the RCC is famous for; very un-christ like, sigh. The question is; Why does the USA need a vicar of christ in Washington, DC? If the RCC congragation wants influence over politics, that means paying their taxes like every other law abiding voting citizen. Not to mention the money siphoned off to support old Ratzinger in Vatican city; a Rolls Royce is a nice ride!

    August 23, 2012 at 7:38 pm |
    • Gino

      Read: theocracy in the making.

      August 23, 2012 at 7:44 pm |
    • hippie power 69

      and why shouldn't the old nazi have a nice car? i would have thought it would be a mercedes benz though, you know more with the german nazi tradition.

      August 24, 2012 at 11:12 am |
  8. prophet

    the problem is here and please don't take this the wrong way because your right, these clergy do think that we are stupid and that why they do it. They insult us with their deception and they know that they are misleading people.

    August 23, 2012 at 7:34 pm |
    • Gino

      Uh, "prophet", the clergy and their hangers-on have been misleading the people since JC gave up the ghost. A lot of the world just doesn't buy it. You're welcome to your beliefs, but stop the preaching.

      August 23, 2012 at 7:51 pm |
  9. PsiCop

    And Dolan wants me to believe he's not endorsing a political candidate? Yeah right. Like I'm stupid enough to believe that.

    August 23, 2012 at 7:28 pm |
  10. jaltman81

    The first political convention I remember watching was the 1976 Democratic National Convention that nominated Jimmy Carter. Martin Luther King, Sr. gave a powerful and very "political" Benediction. I don't remember anyone suggesting that Ebeneezer Baptist Church lose its tax exemption.

    August 23, 2012 at 7:18 pm |
  11. prophet

    we are praying that there won't be but its unlikely.

    August 23, 2012 at 7:03 pm |
  12. prophet

    Obama will be relected as the usa don't change their president when the country is at war and it will be soon.

    August 23, 2012 at 7:00 pm |
  13. cg1230

    I pray that President Obama is re-elected.

    August 23, 2012 at 6:56 pm |
    • truth be told

      poor leadership is Gods curse on a nation

      August 23, 2012 at 8:23 pm |
  14. prophet

    another thing that non-believers have in common is that they all seem to be angry so they can't be happy as they say that they are.

    August 23, 2012 at 6:40 pm |
    • Lol

      hate and anger is your forte.. hate the gays, hate the pagens, hate the people of other religions, hate the people who don't say your god is their god, hate yourself for the original sin, etc..etc.. etc..

      wow.. if there is any bit of love in you, it is in your love for hypocrisy and bigotry.. gee

      August 23, 2012 at 8:28 pm |
    • Chick-a-dee

      I hate brussels sprouts. You missed that one.

      August 23, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
    • Mark From Middle River

      >>>". hate the gays"

      Yeah, not like the Belief Blog has ever had any articles on Gay and Lesbian Christian Clergy. Or Gay and Lesbian churches.

      August 24, 2012 at 3:47 am |
  15. prophet

    what about the jordanian athletes, wonder why they went to Ireland where most of those types of clergy are.

    August 23, 2012 at 6:26 pm |
  16. prophet

    its interesting that someone on here has written about that they are a non-believer and their name is Kind-Less need anymore be said about this silliness and also non believers cannot spell, have you noticed, its something they have in common, literacy problems. We are praying for you all.

    August 23, 2012 at 6:19 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      You type that sort of stupid run-on sentence weirdness and have the gall to talk about "literacy?"

      August 23, 2012 at 6:32 pm |
    • mig

      It's "profit"not "prophet". The basis of most religions is profit or a cover for a lust for young children.Keep these people out of our lives.

      August 23, 2012 at 7:58 pm |
    • hippie power 69

      shame on you and you call yourself a christian right? how judgmental of you.

      August 24, 2012 at 11:16 am |
  17. prophet

    people ask for proof of God then what i say to them look in the mirror and they will see what God has made and if they don't like what they see then its their own fault and so change and became a better person. Turn To God and be a better person and we are praying for you always.

    August 23, 2012 at 6:14 pm |
    • Athy

      What the hell are you trying to say? You need some real help in constructing meaningful sentences. Go back to about the sixth grade and start over, you dipshit.

      August 25, 2012 at 3:00 am |
  18. prophet

    this is why pagans on here are angry because they know that they have very little if anything at all to be happy about. We always pray for those that try to harm The Way because all they can do is delay the inevitable and that is The Complete Salvation of those that Truly Believe in Love.

    August 23, 2012 at 6:10 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Stupid. As an atheist, I have lots and lots and lots of reasons to be happy. I have some reasons to be sad, but I'm not because I know that my emotional state is up to me and my decision. I don't rely on some magical, invisible sky daddy to do something for me, I just decide to be happy all on my own because it makes more sense to choose that state than the sad state. duh

      August 23, 2012 at 6:35 pm |
  19. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things'

    August 23, 2012 at 6:08 pm |
    • Jesus Chrust!

      Prayer does not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example; Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!

      August 23, 2012 at 6:09 pm |
    • kindless

      Not true actually. It's really best for all people including children to have an agnostic approach to god, and an atheistic approach to all religion. Teaching kids to be agnostic helps reinforce their understanding of the new real things they can see and learn about in life. It helps them properly separate the known from the unknown without confusing them. They just need to be taught things that are unknown, like god, and things that are made up, like all religion.

      Atheists have strong minds, and don't run and hide their misdeeds within their religion (and by doing so, disserving society).

      Prayer is really just a time-sucker-upper. We have only begun to scratch the surface in using the mind to its maximum, and damaging it with made-up junk that politicians and salesmen dreamed up long ago is senseless, and as history has shown, is dangerous to society.

      old mama kindless

      August 23, 2012 at 6:14 pm |
    • exlonghorn

      Prayer may change something, but your incessantly posting this does not.

      August 23, 2012 at 6:38 pm |
    • mig

      I have been praying for months that you disapear,but so far no success.Anymore suggestions?By the way there are millions of praying believers all over the world, starving, sick and dying.Instead of paying a phone bill to spread your useless nonsense,why don't you donate that money to UNICEF or something and spare us all this incessant drival?

      August 23, 2012 at 8:14 pm |
    • Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

      Prayer changes things'
      Proven

      August 23, 2012 at 8:16 pm |
  20. prophet

    this is why pagans on here are angry because they know that they have very little if anything at all to be happy about. We always pray for those that try to harm The Way because all they can do is delat the inevitable and that is The Complete Salvation of those that Truly Believe in Love.

    August 23, 2012 at 6:07 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.