2016 Presidential Election Archbishop Charles Chaput
Chaput Vatican Riccardo De Luca/AP Photo

Philadelphia's Archbishop Charles Joseph Chaput attends a press conference in preparation of the World Meeting of Families scheduled in Philadelphia on next September, at the Vatican, Thursday, June 25, 2015.

October 13, 2016

Archbishop Chaput: Leaked Clinton emails 'anti-Catholic,' 'ugly'

Archbishop of Philadelphia Charles Chaput had fierce words for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton in his weekly column published Thursday on the archdiocese's website.

Titled, "About Those Unthinking, Backward Catholics," Chaput tackled his thoughts on some in the Democratic party, President Obama and the Clinton staff's emails that were hacked by WikiLeaks, calling them "anti-Catholic" and "ugly," first reported by Philly.com.

One of the emails Chaput cites is, "Re: opening for a Catholic Spring? just music ..." between John Podesta, chairman of the Clinton campaign and Sandy Newman, president and founder of the nonprofit Voices for Progress that particularly stirred Chaput. 

In the leaked email, Newman writes:

"This whole controversy with the bishops opposing contraceptive coverage even though 98 percent of Catholic women (and their conjugal partners) have used contraception has me thinking ... There needs to be a Catholic Spring, in which Catholics themselves demand the end of a middle-ages dictatorship and the beginning of a little democracy and respect for gender equality in the Catholic church. Is contraceptive coverage an issue around which that could happen. The Bishops will undoubtedly continue the fight. Does the Catholic Hospital Association support of the Administration's new policy, together with "the 98 percent" create an opportunity?

Of course, this idea may just reveal my total lack of understanding of the Catholic church, the economic power it can bring to bear against nuns and priests who count on it for their maintenance, etc. Even if the idea isn't crazy, I don't qualify to be involved and I have not thought at all about how one would 'plant the seeds of the revolution,' or who would plant them. Just wondering ..."

Chaput, who has been vocal about the election in past columns, called for the Clinton campaign to renounce the messages.

Chaput writes in his column:

"Of course it would be wonderful for the Clinton campaign to repudiate the content of these ugly WikiLeaks emails. All of us backward-thinking Catholics who actually believe what Scripture and the Church teach would be so very grateful.

In the meantime, a friend describes the choice facing voters in November this way: A vulgar, boorish lout and disrespecter of women, with a serious impulse control problem; or a scheming, robotic liar with a lifelong appetite for power and an entourage riddled with anti-Catholic bigots.

In a nation where 'choice' is now the unofficial state religion, the menu for dinner is remarkably small."