Australian premier rapped for lobbying popeJuly 8th, 2009 - 10:24 am ICT by IANS
Sydney, July 8 (DPA) Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd should not be pressuring
Pope Benedict XVI to make Australian nun Mary MacKillop a saint, a prominent Jesuit priest said Wednesday.
Frank Brennan joined other leading Catholics in criticising Rudd for arranging a meeting Wednesday with the pope at which Rudd said he would encourage the pontiff to have MacKillop canonised.
“I think it would not be appropriate for him to attempt to lobby,” Father Brennan told the national broadcaster ABC.
Rudd has been accused of courting the Catholic vote by trying to make MacKillop Australia’s first saint before the next general election.
MacKillop, who died 100 years ago, was beatified in 1995 for her good works. She is believed to have cured a woman of cancer and needs one more approved miracle to become a saint.
Rudd is to meet the pope at the Vatican.
“The sheer arrogance of the prime minister, believing he can lobby the pope on behalf of Mary MacKillop, is quite frankly offensive,” opposition Liberal Party member of parliament Christopher Pyne said this week. “The path to sainthood is a very serious process, and it doesn’t include lobbying by the leaders of countries.”
Tags: 100 years, australian prime minister, benedict xvi, canonised, catholic vote, catholics, christopher pyne, frank brennan, jesuit priest, kevin rudd, liberal party, mary mackillop, member of parliament, national broadcaster, party member, pontiff, pope benedict, pope benedict xvi, sainthood, sheer arrogance