He may appear calm, cool and collected in public. But a year after taking office, President Barack Obama confesses that words sometimes do hurt him.

USA/OBAMAOn the eve of Martin Luther King Day, Obama paid homage to the civil rights leader and reflected on his own faith in an address at a Baptist church in Washington.

“You know, folks ask me sometimes why I look so calm,” Obama said before a largely African-American congregation.

“They say, all this stuff coming at you, how come you just seem calm? And I have a confession to make here. There are times where I’m not so calm,” Obama said.

“There are times when progress seems too slow. There are times when the words that are spoken about me hurt. There are times when the barbs sting,” he said.