News & Politics

Watch National Cathedral Worshipers Deliver a Standing Ovation for a Statement That Criticized Trump

Photograph by Woodkern, via iStock.

Worshipers at the National Cathedral stood and applauded Sunday when a leader at the institution, which is closely associated with the presidency, spoke about a statement the cathedral published last week that strongly criticized President Trump.

In a video from the service, which you can see above, Episcopal Diocese of Washington Bishop Mariann Edgar Budde offers some words of welcome, followed by the Rev. Canon Kelly Brown Douglas, who expresses gratitude for the cathedral community’s response to the statement. Douglas then has to pause to accommodate nearly half a minute of applause from the congregants, many of them standing.

Douglas continues:

Our intention is to call us all to reach higher, even in those times when others may reach lower to some of the darkest parts of who we can be, we’re called as a faith community, as leaders, as people, to reach higher to the aspirations of where we know we can be. And we thought it time to put out that statement to remind us that in fact we can be better. And so we challenge not simply the leadership of our nation—we challenge ourselves, and every aspect of our living, to be better, to be better than we were the moment before.

Since the cathedral’s statement last week, the newly installed Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington, Wilton Gregory, has criticized Trump’s speech as well, and other bishops have followed.

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Andrew Beaujon joined Washingtonian in late 2014. He was previously with the Poynter Institute,, and Washington City Paper. His book A Bigger Field Awaits Us: The Scottish Soccer Team That Fought the Great War was published in 2018. He lives in Del Ray.