At Easter breakfast, Obama touches on grace and resurrection
Published: April 4, 2012
WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Reflecting on Christ's resurrection, "the all-important gift of grace" and times when faith is shaken, President Barack Obama welcomed 150 Christian religious leaders to the White House April 4 for his third Easter prayer breakfast. With a guest list composed of theologians, preachers, nuns, priests and lay activists from dozens of denominations, Obama opened the event by thanking the people in the room for the work they do in their ministries and for their prayers for him. "Every time I travel around the country, somebody is going around saying, we're praying for you. We've got a prayer circle going. Don't worry, keep the faith. We're praying," he said. "Michelle gets the same stuff. And that means a lot to us. It especially means a lot to us when we hear from folks who we know probably didn't vote for me ... and yet, expressing extraordinary sincerity about their prayers. It's a reminder not only of what binds us together as a nation, but also what binds us together as children of God," he said. It was Obama's third such Easter prayer breakfast, each coming sometime close to Easter and typically including primarily religious leaders and some White House staff and Cabinet members, not members of Congress or other primarily political figures. Later in the week the White House was to host another tradition of his administration, a Passover Seder, the guests for which have been staff and close friends. Among the breakfast guests were Washington Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl, who did a reading; Greek Orthodox Archbishop Demetrious; Sister Carol Keehan, a Daughter of Charity who is president and CEO of the Catholic Health Association; the Rev. Al Sharpton; the Rev. Joel Hunter, senior pastor of Northland, A Church Distributed; the Rev. Leith Anderson, president of the National Association of Evangelicals; and the Rev. Julius Scruggs, president of the National Baptist Convention.
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