Update: 01/10/2013 - Louie Giglio Withdraws From Inaugural Benediction
The Presidential Inaugural Committee (PIC) announced Tuesday that Pastor Louie Giglio of Passion City Church in Atlanta, Georgia will deliver the benediction at President Barack Obama's public inaugural ceremony on January 21. Civil rights activist Myrlie Evers-Williams, widow of Medgar Evers, will give the invocation.
"Vice President Biden and I are honored that Myrlie Evers-Williams and Rev. Louie Giglio will participate in the Inaugural ceremony," said Obama in a statement from the PIC. "Their voices have inspired many people across this great nation within the faith community and beyond."
God truly has gifted Giglio with the ability to inspire many through preaching, worship, prayer and spiritual renewal. Just days ago at the Passion 2013 Conference in downtown Atlanta, he encouraged and mobilized more than 60,000 students and ministry leaders, as well as 170,000 online attendees from around the world. In one of the largest Christian gatherings in the nation, Giglio initiated a global campaign to end slavery called 2013 Freedom. "The poor are going to be lifted because of what happens in here," Giglio said at the Passion event. "We are going to fight for justice, to shine a light on modern day slavery. We are going to bring freedom to the 27 million men and women and children trapped in slavery in this city and in the cities around the world." The four-day event raised more than $3 million dollars for agencies actively working to end slavery and assist victims.
Looking forward to participating in the inaugural benediction, Giglio said, "It is my privilege to have the opportunity to lead our nation in prayer at the upcoming inauguration. During these days it is essential for our nation to stand together as one. And, as always, it is the right time to humble ourselves before our Maker. May we all look up to our God, from whom we can receive mercy, grace and truth to strengthen our lives, our families and our nation. I am honored to be invited by the President to lead our nation as we look up to God, and as we look ahead to a future that honors and reflects the One who has given us every good and perfect gift."
As an advocate for civil rights, Evers-Williams has dedicated her life to fighting for justice in our nation. She said, "I am humbled to have been asked to deliver the invocation for the 57th inauguration of the President of the United Statesespecially in light of this historical time in America when we will celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Civil Rights Movement."
Photo: Larry Busacca / Getty Images