Black pastors took to their respective pulpits around the nation Sunday morning to blast President Barack Obama over his personal support of gay marriage.
But very few of them ventured into commentary suggesting that their congregations withdraw their political support from the President.
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The Rev. Wallace Charles Smith, for example, told his congregation that neither he nor the church supports the Obama’s view on gay marriage. But he made sure to ask his members to keep Obama in their prayers and not to abandon him completely, according to reporting by CNN.
“We may disagree with our president on this one issue,” Smith said from the pulpit of the Shiloh Baptist Church in Washington. “But we will keep him lifted up in prayer. … Pray for President Barack Obama.”
The same message was conveyed by another prominent pastor in the Midwest.
In Columbus, Ohio, Bishop Timothy Clark, head of the predominately First Church of God, also told his church that he does not support Obama’s gay marriage views, but hopes that Blacks do not become distracted by the issue.
According to USA Today, Clark to his congregation “to pray for the president and pray this will not become a political football with uncivil language and heated rhetoric. We can disagree on this, as we do on many things, and still love each other.”
Down in Atlanta, Rev. Raphael Warnock of Ebenezer Baptist Church didn’t delve much into the issue at all, choosing to focus more on Mother’s Day instead. He, too, took a diplomatic approach to the President’s announcement, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“The president is entitled to his opinion,” Warnock told congregants. “He is the president of the United States, not the pastor of the United States.”