America will prioritize protecting Christians abroad

Vice President Pence sought on Thursday to reassure Christian leaders looking for the White House to focus more on the plight of persecuted Christians abroad.

“Protecting and promoting religious freedom is a foreign policy priority of the Trump administration,” the vice president said during a morning address at the World Summit in Defense of Persecuted Christians being held this week in Washington. Pence spoke to an audience who are grateful for the Trump administration’s statements of support for that cause but who are starting to question when the administration will take more concrete action.

Advocacy on behalf of people persecuted for being Christian is a topic “of enormous importance to this administration,” Pence said. Turning to speakers at the conference who were there to share their personal stories of persecution abroad, he said: “You have the prayers of the president of the United States. The suffering of Christians in the Middle East has stirred Americans to action, and it brings me here today.”

Pence is very popular among the Christian leaders gathered at the conference at the Mayflower Hotel, which was organized by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. Several said they trust that the administration wants to help Christians because they know that Pence cares about their cause.

The Rev. Franklin Graham, who led the conference, said in his introduction of Pence: “What I appreciate so much about our vice president is his strong faith in God and his belief in Jesus Christ as the son of God. As a nation, we are very fortunate to have a president that believes in God and a vice president who strongly supports all of us in the church and is not afraid to express his faith.”

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