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Fox's Fr. Jonathan Morris Pimps Gov. Rick Perry's Public Prayer

Reported by Priscilla - August 7, 2011 -

Fox News, as "America's Newsroom, broadcasts to a Christian America. They showed their godly bona fides in the lead up to yesterday's Texas prayer rally supported by Republican (praise Jesus) Texas Governor Rick Perry. "The Response," a day of prayer and fasting (which, given the girth of the participants, couldn't have hurt!) was pimped mightily by Fox "news" anchor Molly Line, Fox's resident clergy (the only "official" clergy) Father Jonathan Morris, and the league of extraordinary Christians otherwise knows as "The Five." Part of the pimping involved no mention, on the part of the Fox religious pimps, of the extremist and intolerant Christian views of the endorsers and the sponsor, The American Family Association, whose homophobic and Islamophobic views have earned it a "hate group" rating by the Southern Poverty Law Center. There was no mention that other clergy were opposed to the rally. There was no mention of Perry's use of tax money to endorse the rally or the fact that the "prayer" was exclusively Christian. So it wasn't surprising to see Fox's top religious pimp, Father Jonathan Morris, during today's Fox & Friends homily, provide his imprimatur to the rally and government sponsored prayer in general - a sentiment that he expressed when he pimped The National Day of Prayer on a Fox "news" show. But Fox is doing the Lord's work because, as Jesus' right hand network, it's bringing the news of great tiding that Rick Perry, as part of a prayerful Christian Fox nation, could be the second coming for a lackluster GOP primary field.

Juliette Huddy reported that TX Gov. Rick Perry is "under fire for leading a prayer rally yesterday some critics are calling it a political game for 2012." A short video of Perry's prayer was played during which Perry referred to "the living Christ." Clayton Morris asked "why is holding a prayer rally so controversial?" He didn't mention that much of the criticism, some from clergy, was focused on religious extremists, some of whom are anti-Catholic, who supported the rally. Fr. Morris, who when he initially endorsed the rally confusing the Declaration of Independence with the Constitution, provided the pre-scripted response by saying "the more prayer, the better." Fr. Morris, not an attorney, said that it's "constitutionally appropriate." Though the chyron referenced "protest" at the Rally, nobody addressed it. Father Morris wanted to be shown anything that says that somebody in authority shouldn't pray and encourage people to pray. The little padre then advanced the Christian right wing trope about past presidents who said "we need the help of God." He praised Perry for not invoking God for political purposes.

Clayton Morris read a quote from a Catholic politician who said that he doesn't use his religion as a "side-show" to his legislative duties. He added "this is a sideshow?" (Ya think!). Fr. Morris put in the scripted plug for evangelicals who "have a lot to teach Catholics about making sure that we're not hiding our faith." He continued that "there's nothing wrong with public expression of our faith as long as we're not using it to say God wants me to be president." (Hey Father, how bout Catholic priests who, on national TV, use code words to instruct Catholics not to vote for Obama.) The chyron provided the Fox message: "Nation Unites in Houston." (Not hardly!) To Huddy's question about alienating a voting group, Fr. Morris said something interesting about how if there's ever a non-Christian president he doesn't want him "to pretend he's Christian in order not to alienate me." Perhaps in prepping the audience for a Perry presidency, he added that we shouldn't be afraid of a Christian president or governor being "who he is." (No Christian women?) Clayton Morris played a clip, from earlier in the show, of Dr. James Dobson defending the rally. To Huddy's question of politics being involved, Fr. Morris said "there's nothing wrong with politics and religion mixing." He said that religion should be "what it is, a major part of people's lives and we don't have to hide it."

Comment: Wonder if the cute, little padre knows that one of the rally's endorsers, Peter Wagner, advocated the burning of statutes of Catholic saints? Isn't Fr. Morris aware that another endorser and participant in the rally, Rev. John Hagee, once referred to the Catholic Church as the whore of Babylon? I guess what's more important is pushing the requisite Fox Christian agitprop which, in this piece, seemed to be sending some "Christian" love in Rick Perry's direction. I watched part of the cult gathering in Houston and I thought I saw some angels hovering over Perry. One of them looked like Roger Ailes - praise be!

For those of you who have a problem with a Catholic priest being used for right wing propaganda, you could contact

Fox News - yourcomments@foxnews.com

The Vicar General of the Catholic Arch Diocese of NY - chancery@archny.org

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