Obama's Early Sainthood Upsets Some

SF novelty shop blesses the president

Maybe President Barack Obama's miracle was passing the economic stimulus bill. Or maybe it was his impressive campaign to get elected president.

But the one thing we are sure of, is that Mr. Obama must have done something out of this world because less than a month into office he is already being dubbed a saint. And some people are not happy about it.

A Catholic priest in San Francisco is a bit peeved, to say the least, that a city gift shop is selling a prayer candle that has the head of the president on top of the body of the first black saint in the Americas, St. Martin de Porres.

The candle has a holier than thou picture of Obama wearing a black gown. In his right hand, draped across his chest, is a cross, and in his left hand a staff. To complete the image, the country's first African-American president has a halo around his head.

Rev. Tony La Torre of St. Philip the Apostle Church is not happy about the image because he says it "mocks Jesus."

"I am appalled that in such a family-oriented neighborhood, any retailer would be so bigoted and so hateful (as) to carry such merchandise just to 'make a buck,'" La Torre wrote in his parish newsletter.

He is so upset that he is urging his fellow church goers to boycott the Just For Fun card and novelty shop.

The store says that it has sold more than 700 candles since they went on display around Christmas.

The story has made both national and local headlines. Matier and Ross of the Chronicle took some time off from digging dirt on the state's politicians to break the story Sunday and of course Fox News has jumped all over it since.

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