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Barack Obama's minister, Jeremiah Wright, heads South (literally)

March 20, 2008 |  5:00 pm

For years, it seems, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright has made periodic preaching excursions from his homebase in Chicago to Tampa (anyone familiar with the Windy City's weather -- especially its winter and almost-never-seems-to-arrive spring -- can readily understand the allure of such trips).

Wright, we've learned, annually draws big crowds to sermons he delivers at two predominantly black churches in the area. And next week, he'll be the prime attraction at a revival Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at one of those places of worship.

Think his appearances will generate a bit more coverage than usual?

The St. Petersburg Times' story on Wright's impending visit includes many admiring comments from those who have heard and known him over the years.

Similarly, a Los Angeles Times article earlier this week noted that along with the incendiary statements Wright made from his Chicago perch that now are causing headaches for Barack Obama's presidential campaign, he "also provided uplift. He affirmed the resiliency of the black family, invited married couples in the pews to stand and be cheered, and eventually focused on how to save failing relationships." (Read more here.)

-- Don Frederick