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Tim Kaine’s pastor: ‘We believe in that seamless garment’

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 07/23/16

Yet, there’s no mention of abortion in this piece.

From NPR, reporter Kelly McEvers interviews the senator’s pastor, the Rev. Jim Arsenault, from St. Elizabeth’s Catholic Church in Richmond, VA:

MCEVERS: Senator Kaine has talked about his Catholic faith as being one of the major, you know, drivers behind his work as a politician. Is that clear to you as a pastor, and what are some specific examples? ARSENAULT: Well, I can give you one. This past Good Friday, we were about ready to start the procession for the veneration of the cross. And Tim was in back of church. And I said to him, hey Tim, we need your help. Help us carry this cross. It was sort of life-size. And he said sure. And gospel choir was singing some gospel spiritual songs. And Tim was there as people with tears in their eyes would venerate the cross. And they’d come up, and he’d help them up after they were kneeling or something. And he’d shake their hand, and he’d practically pull them up. And then they’d give Tim a nice hug. Everybody knows Tim Kaine. MCEVERS: I wonder, as you think about him as part of the congregation, what are some of the issues you think are most important to him as a politician? ARSENAULT: I think equal pay for equal work for women. I think some of the social justice issues. I think he’d be concerned about that all lives matter, regardless of color of one’s skin. And he is a bridge-builder among races and communities and regardless of zip codes, where people are from or what education they have. He really helps build community. MCEVERS: He’s also been pretty vocal about his opposition to the death penalty on moral and religious grounds. Yet as governor of Virginia, he oversaw several deaths by capital punishment. How do you feel like he reconciles those two things? ARSENAULT: Well, I know that he’s definitely against capital punishment and works to help defend those who are on death row. The church has a teaching with regard to we’re pro-life, and we believe in that seamless garment of life. We respect sometimes lawmakers make difficult decisions.

Read it all.

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