The shocking news broke in April. Gasp–President Trump’s White House cabinet meets for weekly prayer meetings. Oh, the horror!
The idea apparently started with Vice President Mike Pence and eight other cabinet members quickly joined in. Pence brought in Ralph Drollinger from Capitol Ministries to conduct the sessions during the administration’s tumultuous transition into the White House. The ministry also conducts bible studies and prayer sessions in both the House and the Senate, and several states have asked Capitol Ministries to conduct sessions, too.
The meetings are held every Wednesday morning at 7am, with a light breakfast served. Cabinet members actually block the hour-long meeting out on their daily schedules to make time for it.
The mission of Capitol Ministries is to “develop biblical ministries of evangelism and discipleship to Public Servants”. Since it was founded in 1996, the group has started more than 60 such ministries in state capitols and other areas around the world.
“In terms of a country’s health and direction, when its leaders are seeking God, the nation is in a position to be blessed by God in ways that are far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think.” Drollinger said, referencing Ephesians 3:20.
Drollinger continued by describing the Trump cabinet sessions as “a wonderful time of prayer and fellowship.”
“I hand out my weekly written Bible study as a homework assignment on a particular topic,” he added.
Joining Pence are Rick Perry, Tom Price, Jeff Sessions, Betsy DeVos, Ben Carson, and Sonny Perdue. Additionally, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt and CIA Director Mike Pompeo also have joined. The bible study group has extended an open invitation to President Trump to join them anytime.
Some Americans are aghast that an actual prayer session and Bible study would be held within the hallowed White House walls, while others are encouraged and hopeful to see our nation’s most influential leaders openly meeting on a weekly basis to seek spiritual guidance.
Drollinger’s critics paint him as a right-wing evangelical preacher, and fear his spread of fundamentalism to our leaders. Drollinger has also been criticized for his outspoken views on women and the Catholic Church.
Evidently, Drollinger is a longtime friend of Jeff Sessions, a man Drollinger describes as one who “hungers and thirsts for the Scripture.”
“There’s nothing more exciting, when you’re a Bible teacher, to see one of the guys you’re working with — to see him or her articulate something you’ve taught them when they’re under pressure.”
Former Congresswoman Michele Bachmann serves on the Capitol Ministries’ board. Drollinger praises Bachmann by saying, “She thinks Biblically. She doesn’t need a whole lot of time to figure out how to vote because she sees the world through a scriptural lens. We need more men and women like her in office.”
Prayer is a huge part of this country and has been a huge part of the Trump campaign; pastors were often seen praying with the candidate on the campaign trail. New presidents take the oath of office with a hand on the Bible; Trump used a Bible his mother gave him as a boy.
While in office, presidents often use prayer as a means of recollection. Former President Obama ordered a National Day of Prayer in 2016.
“In times of steady calm and extraordinary change alike, Americans of all walks of life have long turned to prayer to seek refuge, demonstrate gratitude, and discover peace. Sustaining us through great uncertainty and moments of sorrow, prayer allows us an outlet for introspection, and for expressing our hopes, desires, and fears,” Obama said at the time.
Our country was founded on Christian principles—principles which are evident in our practices and customs, and in our federal buildings. It’s uncanny that some people seem to be in such an uproar over the Bible study sessions.
~ 1776 Christian