WASHINGTON — Prominent Catholic Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Franklin Graham, and prosperity preacher Paula White will be among the ecumenical selection of faith leaders who will present prayers and readings at Donald Trump’s inauguration ceremony next month, the inaugural committee announced on Wednesday.
“Since the first inaugural ceremony, our leaders have paid tribute to the blessings of liberty that have been bestowed upon our country and its people,” Committee Chairman Tom Barrack said in a statement. “I am pleased to announce that a diverse set of faith leaders will offer readings and prayers at the swearing-in of President-elect Trump and honor the vital role religious faith plays in our multicultural, vibrant nation.”
In addition to Dolan, Graham and White, Jewish rabbi Marvin Hier of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, Samuel Rodriguez of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference and Wayne Jackson of Great Faith Ministries International will also participate.
“I am honored to have been asked to offer a reading from Scripture at the upcoming presidential inauguration, and look forward to asking Almighty God to inspire and guide our new president and to continue to bless our great nation,” Dolan said in a statement.
“In American history Inauguration Day is one of the most sacred and important celebrations we have as a people, not only because it signifies the peaceful transition of power but also because on this day ‘We The People’ appeal to the favor, blessing and guidance of God on our country, on our people and on our new leadership,” White also remarked.
As previously reported, in September 2015, White was among a number of spiritual leaders, including televangelists Kenneth Copeland and Jan Crouch, who laid hands on and prayed for Trump at Trump Tower in New York. She specifically made a “faith declaration” that she was securing Trump’s “calling and his mantle.”
“Father, we just secure him right now by the blood of Jesus. We thank you that no weapon formed against him will be able to prosper and any tongue that rises against him will be condemned according to the word of God,” White, who leads New Destiny Christian Center in Florida, prayed as she touched his arm.
“All the days of his life, let him live well,” she continued. “I secure him. I secure his children. I secure his calling and his mantle.”
James Dobson of Focus on the Family also told reporters in June that “Paula White has known Trump for years and that she personally led him to Christ.”
White, like Trump, has been married three times. She married Journey rocker Jonathan Cain in May 2015 following a divorce from second husband Randy White in 2007. In a message the two delivered about marriage in August of last year, Cain advised, “Ladies, if you don’t know what he likes, figure it out. Get a book. … If he likes to watch porn, watch porn with him.”
In addition to prayers and readings from Catholic, Jewish and evangelical leaders, music will also be provided by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.
“The Mormon Tabernacle Choir has a great tradition of performing at the inaugurals of U. S. presidents,” Ron Jarrett, president of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, said in a statement. “Singing the music of America is one of the things we do best. We are honored to be able to serve our country by providing music for the inauguration of our next president.”
As previously reported, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir has performed at inaugural events for Presidents Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush.