It is a FACT that there will be two hours of Islamist prayers preceding the DNC in North Carolina on August 31st. However it is FICTION that a Catholic Cardinal was denied the same opportunity.
The fact of the matter is that the DNC has spurred a bounty of religious events in addition to the Islamic "Jumah" prayer event. Christians also are expected to gather in big numbers throughout the city, including “Charlotte714,” a Sunday afternoon program of music and prayer that’s expected to attract thousands to Verizon Wireless Amphitheater.
Catholics also are planning group events, including a Friday night rosary and prayer at Time Warner Cable Arena and a pro-life march and rally next Wednesday at The Square in the center of the city. In fact the cchurches throughout the city are opening their doors to special convention-related speakers and programs, highlighting everything from the plight of children and the poor to immigration reform.
Despite this "foolishness", something apparently changed with Dolan now announcing his participation in the DNC. Now, this choice to attend and offer a prayer is a fascinating development for a variety of reasons. First and foremost, Dolan is the president of the U.S. bishops’ conference, so he is in a position of great influence. But secondly — and more importantly — he‘s also an outspoken critic of President Barack Obama’s mandate that employers provide health insurance that covers birth control.
It is clear to this blogger that while the Cardinal does not want to appear partisan, his stance against select Obama administration regulations has been clear. Of particular note is the controversial contraceptive mandate. Dolan has made it clear — both rhetorically and through a lawsuit he’s leading against the federal government — that the regulation forces the Catholic Church to violate its conscience on the birth control front.
In addition to calling administration officials out for allegedly lecturing the bishops earlier this year,he dubbed the mandate “morally toxic” and lambasted the president’s attempt to “define ministry.”