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Harrison Butker supported by Kansas City bishop, prominent Catholics amid speech backlash

Prominent Catholics are voicing their support for Kansas City Chiefs’ kicker Harrison Butker after he delivered a commencement address to graduating students at Benedictine College on May 11 that touched on hot-button issues, causing outrage among the left-leaning media and commentators.

Butker, 28, who has been outspoken about his Catholic faith during his career, received backlash for sharing his views on gender, abortion, euthanasia, and IVF.

He also took aim at several high-profile Catholics such as President Joe Biden and the former head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Dr. Anthony Fauci. He chided certain unnamed bishops who were “motivated by fear” during the COVID-19 lockdowns.

In the speech at the Atchison, Kansas-based Catholic liberal arts college, he denounced “people pushing dangerous gender ideologies onto the youth of America” while calling on graduates to live out their vocation to “ensure that God’s Church continues and the world is enlightened by your example.”

“Our own nation is led by a man who publicly and proudly proclaims his Catholic faith, but at the same time is delusional enough to make the sign of the cross during a pro-abortion rally. He has been so vocal in his support for the murder of innocent babies that I’m sure to many people it appears that you can be both Catholic and pro-choice,” Butker said.

Butker’s local ordinary, Bishop James Johnston of the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, told CNA Thursday in a statement that “Harrison Butker’s passion for his Catholic faith and his family are beautiful and well known. And like most people, he also has strong opinions on where we are as a Church and as a nation.”

“The Catholic Church believes that God calls everyone to pursue holiness no matter what path they take. As St. Paul notes, that diversity of callings and vocations is essential to the life and mission of the Church. I support Mr. Butker’s right to share his faith and express his opinions — including those that are critical of bishops,” he said.

Johnston wasn’t the only one who spoke out in support of Butker.

In a statement to CNA Thursday, another high-profile Catholic, Marian priest and author of “Consecration to St. Joseph” Father Donald Calloway, MIC, said: “I loved the speech!”

Read more at Catholic News Agency 

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