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Texas Gov. Rick Perry says he doesn't back all beliefs of ministers attending his prayer summit

By CHRISTY HOPPE, The Dallas Morning News

AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas Gov. Rick Perry said Monday that he doesn't necessarily subscribe to the beliefs of some of the ministers coming to his prayer summit next month.

"I'm sure that through my elections in the past that there have been some groups that have endorsed me publicly, that I appreciate their endorsements, but their endorsements of me doesn't mean I endorse what they believe in or what they say," Perry said.

Some of the participants of "The Response," have in the past made strong anti-gay and anti-Catholic statements. And while Perry indicated he does not agree, he also said that he would not instruct them on what to say at the Christian day of prayer and fasting to be held Aug. 6 at Reliant Stadium in Houston.

The Mississippi-based American Family Association is paying for the prayer summit. That group's spokesman Bryan Fischer has said that Hitler began the Nazi Party in a gay bar and recruited homosexuals into his army because others would not match "the savagery and brutality they were willing to inflict."

C. Peter Wagner, a Colorado evangelist, has advocated placing the government and media under Christian control and burning the statues of Catholic saints.

John Hagee of San Antonio has called the Catholic Church the "Whore of Babylon," and said that God used Hitler to have the Jews resettle Israel.

Mike Bickle of the International House of Prayer in Kansas City, Mo., described Oprah Winfrey as a "pastor" of the "Harlot Babylon" that will be a precursor to the coming of the Antichrist.

In his first discussion with reporters about some of the ministers associated with his call to pray for the nation, Perry indicated he is willing to associate with all of them even if he disagrees with some of their beliefs. He likened it to political endorsements.

"I appreciate anyone who's going to endorse me, whether it's on The Response, or whether it's on a potential run for the presidency of the United States," he said. "Just because you endorse me doesn't mean I endorse everything that you say or do."

Perry has invited all 49 other governors to join him at the event, saying the nation is in a crisis that can be addressed through prayer and fasting. Thus far, only Gov. Sam Brownback of Kansas has said he is coming.


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