This morning, the President joined Christian leaders, and men and women from small-town churches and large congregations from across the country at an Easter Prayer Breakfast at the White House. He expressed his hopes of making the White House “a place where all people would feel welcome,” noting the recent Seder at the White House and the Iftar held with Muslim Americans to break the daily fast during Ramadan. Before the opening prayer, though, the President sent his condolences to the families of the workers who died in the explosion at the West Virginia mine yesterday:
Before I begin, I want to send my deepest condolences, our thoughts and prayers to the families and the friends of the workers who lost their lives after an explosion took place in a West Virginia mine yesterday. At this moment, there are still people missing. There are rescue teams that are searching tirelessly and courageously to find them.
I spoke with Governor Manchin of West Virginia last night and told him that the federal government stands ready to offer whatever assistance is needed in this rescue effort. So I would ask the faithful who’ve gathered here this morning to pray for the safe return of the missing, the men and women who put their lives on the line to save them, and the souls of those who have been lost in this tragic accident. May they rest in peace, and may their families find comfort in the hard days ahead.