U.S. pastor freed from Turkey prays for Trump
WASHINGTON — Freed American Pastor Andrew Brunson fell to one knee in the Oval Office and placed his hand on President Donald Trump’s shoulder in prayer on Saturday. Trump welcomed Brunson to the White House to celebrate his release from nearly two years of confinement in Turkey, which had sparked a diplomatic row with a key ally and outcry from U.S. evangelical groups.
Brunson returned to the U.S. aboard a military jet shortly before meeting the president. He was detained in October 2016, formally arrested that December and placed under house arrest on July 25 for health reasons. Brunson’s homecoming amounts to a diplomatic — and possibly political — win for Trump and his evangelical base.
Coming on the heels of the confirmation of a conservative justice to the Supreme Court, Brunson’s return is likely to leave evangelical Christians feeling good about the president and motivated get to the polls in the Nov. 6 midterm elections.
Brunson appeared to be in good health and good spirits. When he asked Trump if he could pray for him, the president replied, “Well, I need it probably more than anyone else in this room, so that would be very nice, thank you.”
Brunson left his chair beside Trump, knelt and placed a hand on the president’s shoulder. As Trump bowed his head, Brunson asked God to “give him supernatural wisdom to accomplish all the plans You have for this country and for him. I ask that You give him wisdom in how to lead this country into righteousness.”
He continued: “I ask that You give him perseverance, and endurance and courage to stand for truth. I ask that You to protect him from slander from enemies, from those who would undermine. I ask that You make him a great blessing to this country. Fill him with Your wisdom and strength and perseverance. And we bless him. May he be a great blessing to our country. In Jesus’s name, we bless you. Amen.”
When Pastor Andrew Brunson asked Donald Trump if he could pray for him, the president replied, “Well, I need it probably more than anyone else in this room.”