President Obama hosted his third Easter prayer breakfast in the East Room of the White House this morning, saying that Jesus sets the example this season of overcoming doubt and fear.
“We all have experiences that shake our faith. There are times where we have questions for God’s plan relative to us” — here, the audience interjected with laughter — “but that’s precisely when we should remember Christ’s own doubts and eventually his own triumph,” the president said. “Jesus told us as much in the book of John, when He said, ‘In this world you will have trouble.’ I heard an amen. Let me repeat. ‘In this world, you will have trouble.’”
“Amen!” the audience responded.
Obama expressed appreciation for Americans’ prayers.
“Every time I travel around the country, somebody is going around saying, we’re praying for you,” he said. “It especially means a lot to us when we hear from folks who we know probably didn’t vote for me and yet, expressing extraordinary sincerity about their prayers.”
Vice President Joe Biden, also at the breakfast, gave a short address in which he joked about “12 years of nuns” in school. He also gave a nod to Obama’s fairness doctrine in advocating “equal sacrifice.”
“I’m often characterized as the White House optimist,” Biden said. “I like it because it makes me seem younger than I am.”
Also at the breakfast were Rev. Al Sharpton and Cardinal Donald Wuerl. One pastor in attendance wore a hoodie, noted the White House pool reporter.