President TrumpDonald John TrumpLondon mayor says UK is ‘on the wrong side of history’ with Trump visit Hickenlooper booed in San Francisco for denouncing socialism Cuomo calls Trump base ‘mostly middle aged angry white males’ MORE on Sunday made a brief unannounced visit to a Virginia church following a morning at his golf club.
The White House said Trump was stopping at McLean Bible Church in Vienna, Virginia, “to visit with the Pastor and pray for the victims and community of Virginia Beach.”
But the stop on Sunday lasted only a short time, and there was no explicit mention of the shooting victims.
Twelve people died after a gunman opened fire at a municipal office in Virginia Beach on Friday. Trump has tweeted his condolences and spoken with local leaders.
Trump walked onstage at the church wearing khaki pants and a jacket over his polo shirt and holding a golf hat. He stood alongside Pastor David Platt, who noted that there had been calls from Christian leaders to pray for the president on Sunday.
“We don’t want to do that just on this Sunday,” Platt said. “We want to do that continually, day in and day out. So I want to ask us to bow our heads together now and pray for our president.”
The pastor went on to offer a prayer for the president and other political leaders.
“We know we need your mercy. We need your grace. We need your help. We need your wisdom in our country,” he said. “And so we stand right now on behalf of our president, and we pray for your grace and your mercy and your wisdom upon him.”
The pastor added that he was praying not just for the president but also for “leaders in Congress,” “leaders in courts” and state leaders.
The president did not make remarks onstage before departing.
Evangelist Franklin Graham and 250 other Christian leaders last week announced they were calling for a “Special Day of Prayer” to set aside time to lead their local congregations in praying for the president on Sunday.
Trump had retweeted several messages on Saturday night mentioning the planned day of prayer.