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Obama consulted repeatedly with gay Anglican bishop

During his presidential campaign Barack Obama consulted repeatedly with Gene Robinson, a practicing homosexual whose appointment as an Anglican bishop has divided the worldwide Anglican Communion, reports Matthew Cullinan Hoffman,

According to an interview published by the Times Online, a division of London's Times newspaper, Obama's campaign actively sought out Robinson, and Obama met on three separate occasions with the controversial bishop.

Robinson told the Times that Obama compared his own groundbreaking candidacy as the first black nominee of a major political party to Robinson's appointment as the first Anglican bishop who lives openly with his same-sex lover.

"One of the things Barack and I did talk about when we were together was just the experience of being first and the danger of that and we talked about being demonized by one side and, I don't know if the word is anglicized, by the other," said Robinson.

"Expectations are laid on you both negative and positive and neither are true. And the importance of remaining centered and grounded in the middle of that so that you don't begin to believe either your negative press or your positive press."

Robinson also told the Times that Obama assured him of "his broad and deep support for the full civil rights for gay and lesbian people" and said that Obama agrees with him that religious values should not be "imposed" on the government.

"The thing that I liked about him and what he said on this issue is that he and I would agree about the rightful place of religion vis-a-vis the secular state. That is to say, we don't impose our religious values on the secular state because God said so," said Robinson, who added that he believes that people cannot argue in favor of their political positions based on their religious beliefs.

"And I think the Bush administration got very very close to the line if not going over the line in terms of offering support to religious-based groups who were using their social service arms to proselytize and evangelize which I would say is inappropriate," added Robinson.

As a result of Robinson’s appointment as the Anglican Bishop of New Hampshire in 2003 as well as other changes in Anglican teaching and practice, large sections of the Anglican communion in Africa, Asia, and North America have threatened to break away from the global Anglican Communion.

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Christian Telegraph