A Catholic for Veep

The Pew Forum has prepared a short “religious biography” for Joe Biden.

Here’s a piece:

1584f0a6610f4346a1e52f0e0d314390.jpgBiden and his wife, Jill, attend St. Patrick Church, part of the Diocese of Wilmington; he nominated St. Patrick’s former priest, the Rev. James Trainor, to serve as a guest chaplain in the Senate in 2001. Biden had an hour-long private audience with Pope John Paul II at the Vatican in 1980 on the subject of Poland’s position in the former Communist bloc. Biden met Pope John Paul II three more times. He attended the pope’s 2005 funeral and told The News Journal that the presence of religious leaders from other traditions made the event “much more meaningful.”

When the Diocese of Wilmington’s bishop, Michael Saltarelli, came under pressure in 2004 and 2005 to deny communion to Biden and other Catholic politicians who support abortion rights, the bishop refused, saying through a diocesan spokesman that he “prefers prayer and active engagement” with politicians who take positions contrary to church doctrine; Biden refused to comment on the issue.

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.