Strickland did not respond to questions regarding the video from CNA, but did email a statement Wednesday afternoon, in which the bishop reiterated on his support for Altman's video.
"I support Fr. James Altman's video because I believe, not only Catholic Christians, but ALL God's people must ask themselves some tough questions each time they prepare to cast their vote in any local, state, or national election.
"Voting is not an easy task nor one to be taken lightly. On the contrary; it requires research, prayer, and discernment. We must ask ourselves- Do we believe in God. Do we as a nation believe in God?" Strickland wrote, adding that Catholics must also ask themselves if they believe in God's commandment's and in Catholic Tradition.
"Are we willing to acknowledg our sins and seek repentance and reparation as individuals and as a nation? Are we casting our vote through the lens of Jesus Christ and his Teachings?"
"If my support of Father Altman can prompt meaningful conversations and prayerful discernment about these questions, then I am at least beginning to fulfill my role as a pastor of souls and a disciple of Jesus Christ," Strickland added.
For his part, Callahan noted that Altman has become a symbolic figure in a fractured conversation about Catholicism and partisanship in America.
Callahan emphasized that he understands "the undeniable truth that motivates his message. When we approach issues that are contradictory to the Faith and teachings of Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church, particularly on abortion and other life issues, we should invite dialogue and heart-felt conversion to the truth. Our approach must never seek to divide, isolate and condemn."
"That being said it is not only the underlying truth that needs to be evaluated but also the manner of delivery and the tone of his message. Unfortunately, the tone Fr. Altman offers comes off as angry and judgmental, lacking any charity and in a way that causes scandal both in the Church and in society. His generalization and condemnation of entire groups of people is completely inappropriate and not in keeping with our values or the life of virtue," the bishop insisted.
Altman is the pastor of St. James the Less Parish in La Crosse. He was ordained a priest in 2008, and had worked as an attorney before entering seminary. At a previous parish, St. Peter and Paul, the priest was criticized after a cemetery care fund was reportedly drained, and upkeep at the cemetery declined. The La Crosse diocese did not respond to questions from CNA about the cemetery fund.
Callahan's statement recognized that many Catholics are looking to him for clarity.
"The amount of calls and emails we are receiving at the Diocesan offices show how divisive he is. I am being pressured by both sides for a comment; one side holds him up as a hero or a prophet, the other side condemns him and vilifies him and demands I silence him," the bishop wrote.
(Story continues below)
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
At Catholic News Agency, our team is committed to reporting the truth with courage, integrity, and fidelity to our faith. We provide news about the Church and the world, as seen through the teachings of the Catholic Church. When you subscribe to the CNA UPDATE, we'll send you a daily email with links to the news you need and, occasionally, breaking news.
As part of this free service you may receive occasional offers from us at EWTN News and EWTN. We won't rent or sell your information, and you can unsubscribe at any time.
"Most people expect a decisive move from me, one way or another. Many suggest immediate penalties that will utterly silence him; others call for complete and unwavering support of his views. Canonical penalties are not far away if my attempts at fraternal correction do not work."
"I pray that Fr. Altman's heart and eyes might be open to the error of his ways and that he might take steps to correct his behavior and heal the wound he has inflicted on the Body of Christ."
Ed. note: This report was updated shortly after publication, when Strickland emailed comments to CNA.