President Obama said he may attend “a number of different churches” in Washington rather than just one and is receiving a daily devotional message from a key staffer.
“How we handle church when we’re here in D.C. is something that we’re still figuring out,” the president said during a roundtable with Catholic press reporters on July 2 ahead of his first visit with Pope Benedict XVI.
“And I think that in the second half of the year we will have made a decision. We may choose, rather than to join just one church, to rotate and attend a number of different churches.”
Obama expressed concern about the security procedures any Washington church he visits would endure. He also noted that his experience with his former pastor—Jeremiah Wright of Chicago, with whom he broke ties—made him “very sensitive to the fact that as president the church we attend can end up being interpreted as speaking for us at all times.”
A. M. Stroud III, a former prosecutor in Louisiana, expresses regret for the role he played in sending Glenn Ford to death row in 1984. “I was 33 years old. I was arrogant, judgmental, narcissistic and very full of myself. I was not as interested in justice as I was in winning.” Stroud says he presented dubious evidence from a forensic pathologist, precluded black jurors from the trial (Ford, since exonerated, is black), and ignored the fact that the appointed defense attorney had never before tried a criminal or capital case. “I . . . hope that providence will have more mercy for me than I showed Glenn Ford,” Stroud said in a letter to the editor of the Times of Shreveport. “But, I’m also sobered by the realization that I certainly am not deserving of it” (ABA Journal, March 25).