Six prominent clergy members — including a Catholic cardinal, black and Hispanic Protestant leaders and a rabbi — will pray at Donald Trump’s inauguration.
The inaugural committee told The Post on Wednesday that Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the Rev. Franklin Graham, Rabbi Marvin Hier, Bishop Wayne T. Jackson, the Rev. Samuel Rodriguez and Pastor Paula White will all give readings at the ceremony.
The choice of clergy members to speak at previous inaugurations has drawn criticism, including Barack Obama’s choice of Pastor Rick Warren in 2008 because of Warren’s anti-gay-marriage stance. Trump’s inaugural committee chose some clergy members, including Jackson and White, who were associated with Trump during his campaign, as well as others like Rodriguez, who spoke out against Trump’s views on immigration and other issues of importance to his Hispanic Christian community.
“It’s a particular honor that shows the greatness of America,” said Hier, the first rabbi chosen for an inauguration since Ronald Reagan’s second inauguration in 1985.
Trump chose more clergy than his predecessors, who since 1989 have picked just one or two people to pray at their inaugurations.
Dolan, too, has criticized Trump’s stance on immigration. As the archbishop of New York, he is the most prominent Catholic official in the United States. On Wednesday, he said in a statement, “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.”
The music at Trump’s inauguration will also have a religious flavor: The Mormon Tabernacle Choir, known for its patriotic music at several previous inaugurations and other national events, will sing in the ceremony.
Full story at The Washington Post.