MIAMI – In a move meant to solidify his conservative credentials among evangelicals and reach out to the Hispanic community, Fred Thompson made his first public visit to a church today.
"I grew up in the Church of Christ in middle Tennessee, and my mother saw to it that I was in church three times a week," Thompson told the congregation of over 2000. "She would be very proud to see me here, but surprised that I'm on this side of the pulpit."
She wouldn't be the only one. Thompson said back in September he doesn't attend church regularly, but that didn't seem to bother the crowd at the sprawling mega-church Iglesia El Rey Jesus. Thompson admitted he "didn't always act the way I should" during services when he was growing up, but his faith now shapes his political ideas.
"Our rights don't come from any government, but from God," he said. "It is important that we acknowledge the importance of faith in this nation, and to this nation."
He hit on a number of conservative issues during the ten minute talk, including his belief that marriage is between a man and a woman and the importance of the sanctity of life. The congregation gave him several rounds of applause and a standing ovation as he left.