McCain’s minister: ‘I’m not anti-Catholic’

From Barack Obama’s pastor back to John McCain’s minister/endorser…

John Hagee is the San Antonio megachurch pastor who endorsed McCain and has since enduring a media firestorm for being anti-Catholic.

He has released a short sermon defending himself, which is on YouTube and was sent out today as a video press release.

Hagee states: “I am not now, nor have I ever been, anti-Catholic.” He explains that he supported a convent for retired nuns for 10 years and runs a soup kitchen that serves food primarily to Catholics.

He said that it is true that, as a strong supporter of Judaism and Israel, he has talked about the “past anti-Semitism” of both the Catholic Church and Protestant churches.

He put it like this:

Calling Christians to account for their past anti-Semitism does not make me anti-Catholic and it does not make me anti-Protestant.

Here’s the video:

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Gary Stern

Gary Stern covered education in the Lower Hudson Valley for several years during the early 1990s. Now's he back on the beat. He believes that schools are one of the main reasons that people live around here and that educational issues -- from curriculum to financing -- are among the most challenging things that journalists can write about. He continues to be amazed by the complexity of educational jargon. Gary got his B.A. at SUNY Buffalo and his M.A. from the University of Missouri Journalism School (where his master's thesis was about the best ways to cover education). He lives in White Plains with his wife and two sons, who attend public schools.