Prayer Plays Major Role in Inauguration Day

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While hundreds of thousands came to watch the inauguration, many came to pray during the event.

Religious believers gathered in places like hotel ballrooms to pray for America and its president, but also to praise and worship God.

"The glory is rising in the church. And the glory is rising upon His people, our people," Rev. Rich Brink, with Global Celebration, told CBN News.

"So we pray for leaders. In fact, we're believing even today the glory will come upon our leaders," he said.

Many at a prayer breakfast in the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel also lifted up Israel, a nation of particular interest to evangelicals.

Pennsylvania State Sen. Stewart Greenleaf (R) encouraged those attending to go back home and ask their lawmakers to support a resolution he pushed through the state senate.

"That would establish the legal, historical, and spiritual claim for Israel to the land that they live on," Sen. Greenleaf said. "They are the frontline for us. They're the ones receiving the brunt of the terrorist attacks, not us."

But the main emphasis of this inauguration day was the president and prayer for him.

"Prayer can change things," Brink said. "Always does."

Some of those praying are critics of the president's policies, but still they intercede for him.

"Today the Body of Christ unfortunately spends more time criticizing than they do on their knees actually, sincerely and genuinely praying for our leaders. So that's where we need to come as a people of faith," Merrie Turner, a prayer breakfast hostess, told CBN News.

President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden will be attending an inaugural prayer event Tuesday at the National Cathedral.

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Paul  Strand

Paul Strand

CBN News Washington Sr. Correspondent

As senior correspondent in CBN's Washington, D.C., bureau, Paul Strand has covered a variety of political and social issues, with an emphasis on defense, justice, and Congress.  Follow Paul on Twitter @PaulStrandCBN and "like" him at