Please SIGN this petition which calls on Archbishop Gregory to offer President Trump and the Knights of Columbus an apology for, and withdraw, the ill-mannered and discourteous remarks he made about the President's visit to a major Catholic shrine in Washington, D.C.
Just when the nation needs prayer and healing more than ever, President Trump decided to keep to his schedule which, providentially, had him on a pre-arranged visit to the National Shrine of Pope St. John Paul II, which is maintained by the Knights of Columbus.
For some unknown reason, Archbishop Gregory couldn't resist causing even more division in the U.S. capital, and also among Catholics, than already exists.
With caustic and deeply divisive remarks, unbefitting an Archbishop of Washington, Gregory called the President's visit "baffling and reprehensible."
And, he went on to suggest that the Shrine and the Knights of Columbus allowed themselves to be "egregiously misused and manipulated" by the President.
Of course, nothing could be further from the truth!
And, to dispel some of the Archbishop's misinformation, the Knights released their own statement about the presidential visit, which was far more gracious in tone:
"This [President Trump's visit] was fitting given St. John Paul II was a tireless advocate of religious liberty throughout his pontificate. International religious freedom receives widespread bipartisan support, including unanimous passage of legislation in defense of persecuted Christians and religious minorities around the world."
Indeed, it was especially fitting, given that President Trump just signed a new executive order on religious freedom.
Please SIGN this petition and ask Archbishop Gregory to apologize for, and withdraw, these churlish, hurtful and unspriritual remarks.
Archbishop Gregory is a Catholic priest and, supposedly, a spiritual leader. Not a politician.
One would think that a spiritual leader - not a politician - would welcome and invite the President to pray more, especially at this time of crisis.
One would think that a spiritual leader - not a politician - would applaud the Knights for hosting the President and the First Lady in prayer.
One would think that a spiritual leader - not a politician - would strive to unite Catholics, as well as other Christians, rather than divide them.
In the current atmosphere where tensions are running high, he should easily see the need for reconciliation and unity on the matter of prayer and the benefit to be gained from visiting holy sites, as well as extolling the virtues of Pope St. John Paul II, who was a strong defender of human rights.
Please SIGN this petition, asking Archbishop Gregory to apologize for, and withdraw, his divisive remarks which actually appear to discourage prayer.
Then, after you have signed this petition, and if you so wish, politely call the Archdiocese of Washington's telephone line to express your shock and dismay at Archbishop Gregory's appalling statement.
Remember, please express yourself politely. The number for the Washington Archdiocese's offices is: 301.853.4500.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Archbishop Gregory's full statement regarding President Trump's pre-arranged visit to the Shrine of Pope St. John Paul II:
"I find it baffling and reprehensible that any Catholic facility would allow itself to be so egregiously misused and manipulated in a fashion that violates our religious principles, which call us to defend the rights of all people even those with whom we might disagree. Saint Pope John Paul II was an ardent defender of the rights and dignity of human beings. His legacy bears vivid witness to that truth. He certainly would not condone the use of tear gas and other deterrents to silence, scatter or intimidate them for a photo opportunity in front of a place of worship and peace."
From the Washington Archdiocese website: ''Archbishop Wilton Gregory Issues Statement on Planned Presidential Visit' - https://adw.org/news/archbishop-wilton-gregory-issues-statement-on-planned-presidential-visit/
'DC archbishop criticizes long-planned Trump visit to Catholic shrine as ‘reprehensible’' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/dc-archbishop-criticizes-long-planned-trump-visit-to-catholic-shrine-as-reprehensible