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Catholic Mass at White House: A Tale of Contrasting Administrations

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In a surprising revelation, a former top aide to Donald Trump disclosed that the ex-president permitted a Catholic Mass to be conducted on White House grounds in Washington, D.C., during his tenure, a move unprecedented in White House history. Mick Mulvaney, former Director of the Office of Management and Budget, detailed this occurrence in a recent Wall Street Journal op-ed, shedding light on the stark differences between the Trump and Biden administrations' approaches to religious observance.

Photo credit: Rene DeAnda

Photo credit: Rene DeAnda

Highlights

By Catholic Online (California Network)
4/9/2024 (1 month ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Trump administration, Biden administration, Mick Mulvaney, White House Mass, religious services, presidential election

The Catholic Mass, held in the historic Old Executive Office Building adjacent to the White House, was approved personally by President Trump in response to Mulvaney's request, marking a significant departure from tradition. Mulvaney emphasized the practicality of scheduling the Mass on Ash Wednesday, a period coinciding with critical budgetary deadlines, to accommodate practicing Catholics within the administration and nearby federal agencies.

Describing the event as a resounding success, Mulvaney noted the attendance of over 100 individuals, including career staffers from both the Trump and Obama administrations. Despite its popularity, the Mass was discontinued due to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020.

Regrettably, Mulvaney lamented the lack of continuity under the Biden administration, despite his encouragement to continue the religious services. Despite promises to reassess the situation post-pandemic, neither the Catholic Mass nor other religious services have resumed under President Biden's leadership.

Highlighting the contrasting approaches to religion, Mulvaney underscored Trump's willingness to embrace diverse religious practices, including Protestant, Muslim, and Jewish services alongside the Catholic Mass. In contrast, President Biden, despite identifying as a devout Catholic, has not reinstated the religious observances initiated by his predecessor.

As the 2024 presidential election looms, the divergent stances of Trump and Biden on religious matters are poised to influence public perception. Trump, addressing supporters in Green Bay, Wisconsin, has positioned himself as a defender of Christian values, promising a resurgence of religious visibility in response to Biden's tenure.

The tale of the White House Mass serves as a microcosm of the broader ideological disparities between the Trump and Biden administrations. 

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