National Cathedral to host Presidential Inaugural Prayer Service

President Obama and Vice President Biden to attend service

Posted Dec 18, 2012

[Washington National Cathedral] Washington National Cathedral today announced plans to host a national prayer service in celebration of the 57th Presidential Inaugural. In partnership with the 2013 Presidential Inaugural Committee, the Cathedral will welcome President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden, along with dignitaries and Americans of diverse faiths. The interfaith service will celebrate the previous day’s events through prayer, readings and musical performances. The service on Tuesday, January 22, at 10:30 am, will be ticketed by invitation only and also webcast live at

“The Inaugural Prayer Service is an historic observance that Washington National Cathedral is honored to host once again for President Barack Obama,” said the Very Rev. Gary Hall, dean of the Cathedral. “The Cathedral has come to be known as a spiritual home for the nation, and as part of living into that calling, it is our prayer that the service will embody the hopes and vision of our nation, and that God’s purpose might shine forth with new clarity in our lives.”

“President Obama’s own faith has played an integral role in his life and presidency, so it is fitting that the beginning of his second term be marked by the acknowledgement and celebration of the role of people of faith in American life,” said Presidential Inaugural Committee Communications Director Brent Colburn. “This service will celebrate the values and diversity that make our nation strong.”

The Cathedral also announced plans today for a special exhibit, “Presidents at the Cathedral,” which chronicles past visits by U.S. presidents over the Cathedral’s 105-year history. The exhibit will open in January and be available for Cathedral visitors in the nave and on the Cathedral’s website. A special forum, which is free and open to the public, about the history of the presidential inaugural, has also been scheduled for Sunday, January 20, at 10:10 am.

Beginning with President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s first inauguration in 1933, presidential inaugural prayer services have taken place at the Cathedral. That tradition has been more recently consistent since President Ronald Reagan’s second inauguration in 1985. The exception was President Bill Clinton, who chose Metropolitan AME Church, the historic black church in downtown Washington, for both of his inaugural prayer services. Washington National Cathedral has also been the location of funeral and memorial services for nearly all the 21 presidents of the United States since the Cathedral’s founding.

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden
Interfaith leaders and other dignitaries
Presidential Inaugural Prayer Service
Tuesday, January 22, 2013, 10:30 am
Washington National Cathedral
3101 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C.

Tickets: Tickets required; attendance by invitation only from the Presidential Inaugural Committee; visit