Nov 9, 2008 3:43 pm US/Central
Farrakhan Says Obama 'New Beginning'
CHICAGO (AP) ―
In a Sunday address celebrating President-elect Barack Obama, Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan said Obama has a God-given capacity to handle any burdens he'll face as the nation's leader.
Farrakhan added that Obama will only be able to make positive changes with help from "God and people of good will," and he urged the Chicago-based movement's followers to do their part.
"President-elect Obama has energized all segments of the depressed, downtrodden, rejected and despised," he said in a 90-minute speech at Mosque Maryam on the city's South Side. "Now it is up to us to take the new energy that he has given us ... and channel that energy into making ourselves better."
Dressed in intricately decorated red and gold robes and matching fez, the once-ailing 75-year-old leader spoke to more than 1,000 followers in an address called "America's New Beginning: President-elect Barack Obama."
Farrakhan, who said Obama draws a "oneness of spirit" from all people, admitted he stayed quiet about his support for Obama during the past few months out of fear his words would harm the Illinois senator's bid for the White House.
In February, Farrakhan praised Obama calling him "the hope of the entire world that America will change and be made better" at a Saviours' Day event in Chicago.