ATLANTIC, Iowa—Newt Gingrich spoke about his Catholic religion and belief in God today on two different campaign stops, recognizing the Christian Evangelical support is a necessary factor for caucus success.
Gingrich is still working for last minute Christian votes before Tuesday. He held a telephone meeting with Iowa pastors Friday.
“I pray before virtually every speech and virtually every major decision,” Gingrich said.
Gingrich converted to Catholicism only a few years ago, after marrying his wife, Callista, whom he credits for his faith.
“Callista is a cradle Catholic and grew up in the Catholic church, I’m a convert. But all I can tell you is I find taking communion an enormously rewarding and deepening experience,” Gingrich said.
Gingrich changed religious denominations several times and as a politician with more than 30 years in the public sector, his tumultuous personal life has been lived out in public.
Gingrich has been divorced twice and his third marriage began with a long affair while he was Speaker of the House.
“I’ve been very clear publicly I’m not a perfect human being and I’ve made mistakes in my life and I’ve had to apologize to God and to seek reconciliation,” Gingrich told a self-proclaimed evangelical lady during the question and answer portion of a town hall in Atlantic, Iowa, who asked if he could win the evangelical vote.
“I believe most evangelicals know that defeating Obama is at heart of our country’s future,” Gingrich said, “I think what you’ll find is overall, overwhelmingly evangelicals would prefer me to Barack Obama.”
Gingrich received the endorsement of several influential evangelical Iowa pastors and also was endorsed by the Evangelical Christian radio network, American Family Radio.