Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Church-going Presidents Part II

First Baptist Church (1328 16th Street)
-Harry S Truman
-Jimmy Carter

Foundry United Methodist Church (16th and Church Streets)
-Bill Clinton

House of Representatives (Capitol Hill)
I find it amusing that Jefferson, who was a big proponent of the separation of church and state, authorized worship services in the Capitol.
-Thomas Jefferson

Immanuel-on-the-Hill (3606 Seminary Road, Alexandria)
-Gerald Ford

National City Christian Church (Thomas Circle)
-Lyndon B. Johnson

National Presbyterian Church (Connecticut Avenue and 18th, near N Street)
-James K. Polk

St. John’s Episcopal Church (Lafayette Square, pictured above)

-Martin Van Buren
-George Bush
-George W. Bush

St. Patrick Catholic Church (G Street, between 9th and 10th Streets)
Though Andrew Johnson had no religious affiliation, he was often seen at Roman Catholic services at this parish. Church pastor, Father Jacob Walter, was outspoken in his defense of Mary Surratt, a parishioner who was charged as an accomplice in Abraham Lincoln’s assassination. After she was found guilty, Father Walters stood by her at her execution
-Andrew Johnson

White House (white building on Lafayette Square)
Nixon opted to hold Sunday services at the White House. The services were frequently led by Rev. Billy Graham.
-Richard Nixon

So that leaves us with 2nd President John Adams. I have not been able to come up with a worship location for Adams, and this could have several explanations. For one, Adams was a Unitarian. As a new religion, there were not many locations for worship in the new Capitol. This brings us to the second point that Adams being the first president to live in the White House in a newly created city, found his worshipping options greatly limited (Alexandria and Georgetown were more developed as trading centers).

Thanks to Ian, for helping with the research!

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