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Joe Biden attends church for first time since taking office

by Press Association

President Joe Biden has attended Mass for the first time since taking office, worshipping on Sunday at the church he frequented when he was vice president.

Mr Biden, the nation's second Catholic president, attended Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Washington's
Georgetown neighbourhood, a few miles from the White House.

It is where the nation's only other Catholic president, John F Kennedy, often went to Mass.

Mr Biden entered through the front entrance, where a Black Lives Matter banner was hanging on one side and a banner with a quote from Pope Francis was on the other: "We cannot tolerate or turn a blind eye to racism and exclusion in any form and yet claim to defend the sacredness of every human life."

The president, in a brief exchange with reporters, said the service was "lovely".

He was accompanied to church by his son, Hunter, and two of his grandchildren, Finnegan and Maisy.

His motorcade made a brief stop on the way back to the White House for a takeway from Call Your Mother, a popular deli near the church.

The president remained in his armoured vehicle while his son picked up the order.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters on Friday that Mr Biden had not yet settled on a home church in the nation's capital but said that she expected Mr Biden will continue to regularly attend services during his presidency.

At home in Delaware, Mr Biden and his wife, Jill, were regulars at St Joseph on the Brandywine in Greenville.

They alternated between the Saturday and Sunday services depending on their travel schedules throughout the 2020 campaign.

Catholic faithful have an obligation to attend Sunday services but church teaching allows for the commitment to be fulfilled by attending a service on the evening of the preceding day.

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