On March 23, House Speaker Dennis Hastert named Father Daniel P. Coughlin the new House Chaplain. Father Coughlin is Vicar for Priests of the Archdiocese of Chicago.
Our official response was as follows:
“The Catholic League is pleased to note that the House Chaplain selection process has come to an end. Over the past few months, we issued 14 new releases on this subject and granted scores of interviews to the media. We raised many serious questions about the treatment of Father Timothy O’Brien in the selection process and were dismayed by the way the Republicans handled this matter. But we have no interest in fighting this fight any longer and we commend House Speaker Dennis Hastert for bringing this chapter to an end.
“All along we have said that our only interest has been in assuring that the selection process be given strict scrutiny by Republicans and Democrats alike. We have never had any interest in the outcome, only the process. With this said, the Catholic League commends Rev. Wright for stepping aside and Father Coughlin for his appointment as the first Catholic to ever hold the post of House Chaplain.”
Throughout this four-month ordeal, the Catholic League stood squarely behind Father O’Brien. We are proud we did so. When he tells the whole story, there will be few who wish they hadn’t taken our side from the get-go.