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Australian leader denies pressuring Pope on canonization

July 06, 2009

Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has denied that he is putting political pressure on Pope Benedict XVI by urging the Pontiff to proceed quickly with the canonization of Blessed Mary MacKillop. A spokesman for Rudd said that the prime minister will merely convey the feelings of his countrymen when he meets with the Pope this week.

Tony Abbott, a prominent Catholic and leader of the Australian political opposition, had charged that Rudd was pandering to Catholic voters by saying that he would discuss the canonization issue. "What possesses Kevin Rudd to think you obtain a saint in the same way as you might obtain the World Cup for your own country?" Abbott said.

 


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