Thursday, November 1, 2018

Where presidents go to pray

From Washington D.C.-

On Nov. 1, 1800, John Adams became the first U.S. president to move into the White House. The following day he wrote a letter to his wife, Abigail, in which he composed a beautiful prayer.

A portion of John Adams’ prayer was inscribed on the mantelpiece in the State Dining Room by President Franklin D. Roosevelt: “I pray Heaven to bestow the best of blessings on this house and all that shall hereafter inhabit it. May none but honest and wise men ever rule under this roof.”

John Adams described himself in 1811: “I have been a church-going animal for seventy-six years from the cradle.”

Adams entered in his diary, July 26, 1796: “The Christian religion is, above all the Religions that ever prevailed or existed in ancient or modern times.”

Beginning with Thomas Jefferson and continuing till after the Civil War, church services were held in the United States Capitol Building. These services were attended by sitting Presidents, being held each Sunday in the U.S. Capitol House Chamber. Attendance reached over 2,000, making it the largest Protestant Sabbath audience in the nation.

After the White House was finished being built, the next building constructed on
Lafayette Square was St. John’s Episcopal Church. James Madison was the first president to worship at St. John’s Episcopal Church, referred to as “the Church of the Presidents.” His wife, Dolley Madison, was baptized and confirmed there. The church’s 1,000-pound bell was cast by Paul Revere’s son.


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