A group of Christian worship artists and faith leaders, including Hillsong Church founder Brian Houston, prayed for President Donald Trump in the Oval Office on Friday.
The musicians and ministry leaders participated in a worship service and visited the Oval Office and the Cabinet Room, where they prayed for the president and took part in a policy briefing on what the administration is doing to help the faith community and religious freedom.
Attendees included the 65-year-old Houston; Bethel Music founders Brian and Jenn Johnson; Grammy-nominee Kari Jobe; her husband, Cody Carnes; Trump’s faith adviser, Paula White; and Sean Feucht, a Bethel worship leader running for congress in California.
Vice President Mike Pence also attended parts of the briefing.
“Wonderful stopping by a worship leaders briefing today at the @WhiteHouse!” Pence wrote in a tweet. “America is a proud Nation of believers and our Administration will always defend the freedom of religion of every American, of every faith!”
The event comes after questions were raised in September about whether or not the White House refused to invite the Sydney-based megachurch leader, Houston, to a state dinner with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Houston is regarded as Morrison’s faith “mentor.”
Houston was investigated for allegations that he failed to report his father’s sexual abuse of children in his church.
“Here I am at the White House. Never say never,” Houston said in an Instagram video filmed outside of the White House. “It is a great honor to go into the Cabinet Room and even into the Oval Office to pray for the president of the United States of America.”
“To me, it is not about politics. It is about the position,” Houston continued. “[A]nd a significant man like the president of the United States could use all the prayer we could possibly give him.”
Houston was also featured in a video posted to the White House’s Twitter page.
“As an Australian, I really believe that we need a strong America in the world,” Houston said. “With America strong, the world is a better place. What a great opportunity its been to see some of the initiatives that are happening to help freedom of religion and to see the great spirit generally in the White House with people who are optimistic about the future.”
The Nashville-based Jobe and Carnes were also featured in a video on…