Fiery sermons at Obama’s church unnerved Oprah

May 4, 2008

Fiery sermons didn’t drive Barack Obama away from his church, but they did unnerve one other prominent parishioner — media mogul Oprah Winfrey.

oprah.jpgAccording to Newsweek, Winfrey stopped attending Chicago’s Trinity United Church of Christ in the 1990s in part because she wanted to distance herself from the incendiary views of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

“She’s always been aware that her audience is very mainstream, and doing anything to offend them just wouldn’t be smart,” one anymous source tells the magazine. “She’s been around black churches all her life, so Rev. Wright’s anger-filled message didn’t surprise her. But it just wasn’t what she was looking for in a church.”

Wright, of course, is the preacher whose racially charged denunciations of the U.S. government have caused such heartburn for Obama’s bid for the Democratic nomination since they were made public in March. Evidently Winfrey, an Obama supporter, wanted to avoid a conflict of her own.

But Oprah had other reasons for leaving as well, another anonymous source tells Newsweek.

“There is the Church of Oprah now,” the longtime friend says. “She has her own following.”

Photo: REUTERS/Danny Moloshok (Winfrey campaigns for Obama in Los Angeles, April 2)


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Obama unelectable?

Only if you assume that the fall campaign will be about Rev. Wright, “elitism”, lapel pins and race. If it’s about Iraq, the Economy and 4 More Years, he’s a shoo-in.

Posted by Truesdell | Report as abusive

BZ, your comment is very manipulative and suspect. Hillary Clinton is staying in the campaign for personal reasons. In Paul v. Clinton, the judge issued an Order stating that Hillary Clinton does not have to be deposed until the election is over. If she were to drop-out tomorrow she’d have to attend a deposition and answer questions about her Senate campaign that allegedly defrauded Peter Paul out of millions of dollars in the biggest election fraud case in American history. Unfortunately, you Hillary Clinton supporters aren’t the most knowledgeable bunch America has to offer, so she uses you to prolong the inevitable deposition. Hillary Clinton’s political fate will be similar to that of Eight Belles. Watching her campaign is like beating a dead horse.

Oprah is definitely not part of the Rev. Wright team. She has taken the high road by giving all of us the opportunity to discover who we are and to embrace peace and how to have unconditional love for everyone, including Hillary.

She has the right to endorse whomever she chooses because she is not a news anchor or editor. I distinctly remember her interviewing Bill Clinton who was endorsing Hillary at the time even though she supports Barack. I thought that was very gracious of her and can be placed in the ‘high road’ category.

Oprah is a beautiful person, and because of her deep involvement in the teachings of Eckhardt Tolle’s “The New Earth,” I can understand why she would be unnerved by the vitriolic ranting of her ex-Pastor. Her online class discusses how to attain true unconditional love for everyone. The Rev. Wright style of preaching will say that they believe in unconditional love and will quickly follow that statement will negativity.

We have to understand the cause and ‘cure’ for perpetuating negativity in our churches, in our media, and in our daily lives in order to progress to a higher road of well being. I understand your anguish because you want your person of choice to win the election. It’s wonderful that we can agree to disagree in America.

Posted by marymarshall | Report as abusive

I always liked Oprah and admired her but was very turned off by her campaigning for Obama against Hillary. I’m glad to hear she left Wright’s church but she endorsed Obama knowing full well what Wright was all about and how close Obama was to Wright.

Posted by SoularEnergy | Report as abusive

I quit watching Oprah years ago because she is so full of herself. when she came out to support Obama it didn’t surprise me at all. Two egotists patting each other on the back. Great. All they need to do is add Condosleeza Rice to the group and you’d have the 3 stooges.

Posted by Pam Giangrosso | Report as abusive

One respondent raised the technical problem of Obama’s place of birth in relation to his right to be president. I should like to point out that McCain also was not born in the USA. So each candidate, for different reasons, represents a challenge to a requirement that needs to be reconsidered anyway.

Posted by Richard Gustafson | Report as abusive


Posted by MICHAEL MORETTI | Report as abusive

I don’t know how any person who is a true American could even think of voting for someone who does not salute the American flag.Where do you think any of us got the freedom to sit here and type our beliefs if not from those Americans who fought and died for our country.And people are thinking of voting for someone who has supported a church that is so anti-american.Rev.Wright needs to remember if he was living in any other country he wouldn’t have the freedom to put America down. Yea, Obama I’m sure supports his belief. Has he ever came out and said what his changes will be? Why should we trust him? We don’t know anything about him. WAKE UP AMERICA!

This is a great opportunity to show the world that America is a land of opportunity even during election time.
The world is watching and they are evaluating our intelligence. VOTE SMART and restore the American dream in the minds of millions of people in the world. Our economy and image are equally shattered now.

Posted by Addisa | Report as abusive

Obama! there is just way too many things fishy about this guy, a man who’s name is in Arabic, has a middle name ” Hussain” which is totally muslim BUT denies he is a Muslim!, a man who attended muslim fanatic religious school when he was young and has very close relationship with Black muslim extremist groups, friends with people who are terrorists or have harmed this country! Shall I go on…?? Wake up Americans..this isnt about race or religion..this is about electing the person who will hold the most powerful position in this world !! I would rather vote Hilary or even Mccain than to Vote for Obama and sleep with the enemies of this great nation!!

Posted by Abe | Report as abusive

Oprah left Wright’s church in the mid 90’s because of the radical preaching was offensive and would have a negative impact on her viewers if they became aware.

Obama didn’t find anything offensive and defended the preacher until it was an obvious political liability.

Posted by Al | Report as abusive

Jeremiah Wright appears to be crazy! Any reasonable person can see this. Those who are not familiar with Black churches don’t know many pastors say crazy things when they get caught up in the moment. Balance is needed in everything and I think Obama and others know how to balance what is said across a pulpit. White churches are a lot different – what is said is mostly scripted and carefully stated. These pastors do not ad lib per say. Obama is electable; some just don’t want to let their mind and heart believe it.

Posted by PLNL | Report as abusive

The Rev Wright is not only wrong he seems to embody many of the the most negative elements of religion and religious zeal.

The man has a big mouth and conveys the sentiments of a foolish egocentric. He is also a spouter of cant, devisive preaching and shows an abject lack of sensitivity.

And he calls himself a Christian??

Obama has been besmirched by this foolish reactionary, and I think the Rev. should hang his head in shame!

Posted by Keith M Warwick | Report as abusive

How in God’s name does anyone figure that Obama is responsible for words that came out of Wright’s mouth?

I sat in many classes in the University and heard my professors say many a controversal thing, but I was never held accountable for them in fact… I was rewarded for how well I coul remember and recite them

The whole idea behind church is the idea of free will. You have the right to accept or reject any statement

Posted by Kay | Report as abusive

I really just came in to read the comments, but when I clicked on the button…all I saw on the screen cuz I didn’t scroll up at first…was the signin screen.
I was caught in a moment because you know when you sign in it asks for ‘file of the word’ to ‘prove you’re a person – not spam script’.

Mine said: love

that’s all I wanted to share then….is