Pelosi Says She Heard Disputed Bible Verse from Priest

By Pete Winn | July 7, 2008 | 8:33 PM EDT

( - The office of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told Fox News last week that Pelosi heard the disputed Bible "passage" she used in her April 22 Earth Day message from a priest in San Francisco.

Brit Hume reported last Thursday on "Special Report with Brit Hume" that Pelosi's office had told Fox News that the Speaker had "heard a priest quote the verse many years ago during a mass in San Francisco."

On Thursday, Friday, and again on Monday, however, the Speaker's office did not respond to requests for comment made by Cybercast News Service , which first reported on Wednesday, April 23 that biblical scholars have cast doubt on the authenticity of the passage.

In her news release, Pelosi said the quote - 'To minister to the needs of God's creation is an act of worship. To ignore those needs is to dishonor the God who made us' - came from the Old Testament.

Biblical scholars told Cybercast News Service that the quote does not appear anywhere in the Bible--Old or New Testament. Moreover, they say nothing similar can be found in Scripture.

One blog, called "News Hounds," meanwhile, accused Cybercast News Service of putting quotes around the passage, where it said none were in the original:

" ... Winn puts quotes in front of 'to minister' and ends quotes at 'nature' which make it appear that she was quoting from the Bible," said News Hounds. "Mr. Winn, in his zeal to do a "gotcha" on Pelosi, either didn't read her statement carefully or deliberately misquoted her because her address, which I took straight from her Web site, has no quotes around the comment. She was merely summarizing the biblical admonitions to be stewards of God's creation as noted in Genesis 2:15: "Then the LORD God took the man and put him into the Garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it."

Cybercast News Service stands by its story. But to be fair, the blogger's claim may have resulted from a contradiction created by Pelosi's own staff.

The news release as posted on Pelosi's congressional-office Web site ("Pelosi Statement Celebrating Earth Day") had quotation marks around the passage, both before and after Cybercast News Service reported on it, as evidenced here.

The news release posted on the Web site of the Speaker's office also put quotes around the passage ("Pelosi Statement Celebrating Earth Day").

However, an Earth Day "issue" page on the Speaker's Web site - ("Earth Day 2008") does not contain the quotation marks.

This was the page to which the liberal blog links and refers.

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