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'Rain man' apologizes for anti-Barack Obama video (but his cause remains alive)

August 20, 2008 |  1:35 pm

On the one hand, Stuart Shepard repented.

Earlier this month, the official with the political arm of the Focus on the Family religious group sparked controversy with a wry — but provocative — video that urged viewers to join him in praying (literally) that Barack Obama gets drenched on the night of his nomination acceptance speech in Denver's football stadium.

Many of the comments — including from some Focus on the Family adherents — were unfavorable. The video was nixed from its website, and Shepard responded with a new one, "Mea Culpa" (see below), which is worth watching to the final scene.

On the other hand, Shepard's hope for divine meteorological intervention as Obama prepares to speak before a huge outdoor crowd in Denver has been taken up by another.

Wiley Drake, a one-time official with the Southern Baptist Convention, earlier this week posted a release on, expressing regret that Shepard's first video had been pulled and urging prayer "to ask God to bring on the rain."

One thing we can count on — every cloud that drifts across the typically azure Rocky Mountain sky on Obama's speech day will get carefully scrutinized.

— Don Frederick