Romney gives glimpse of his LDS practice

Aug. 20, 2012 at 3:00 AM
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WOLFEBORO, N.H., Aug. 20 (UPI) -- Mitt Romney read Scripture from an iPad in a New Hampshire Mormon church while President Barack Obama was at Washington Episcopal church in a campaign-free day.

The presumptive Republican presidential nominee, providing a rare public glimpse of his religious practice, invited members of the news media to accompany him to Sunday worship services at a Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints near his lake house in Wolfeboro, N.H.

Joining him at the services, known as the sacrament meeting, were his wife Ann, their oldest son Tagg, Tagg's wife Jennifer and the younger Romneys' six children.

Mitt Romney made sure to accept a small piece of white bread and cup of water, representing the flesh and blood of Jesus, from a member of the priesthood who The New York Times said appeared as if he was about to accidentally pass him by.

He also encouraged his wife with a nod to walk to the front pulpit from the pew with Jennifer Romney and about 40 other women to sing "Because I Have Been Given Much," a popular Mormon hymn based on a poem by Grace Noll Crowell that is also included in Baptist hymnals.

During different readings, Romney glanced down at an iPad to read Scripture.

The service was attended by about 100 people.

Among the attendees was billionaire Richard Marriott, heir to the Marriott hotel chain fortune. Marriott, who lives in Potomac, Md., and his brother Bill Marriott donated roughly $1.5 million this year to Restore Our Future, a Super PAC backing Romney, Forbes reported.

Romney served on the Marriott board from 1993 to 2002 and again from 2009 until 2011.

After the closing prayer, which asked for God's guidance through the rest of the day, Romney went to Sunday school, which was closed to reporters.

The Romneys emerged from church about a half-hour before the final class ended, the Times said.

Obama walked across Lafayette Square directly north of the White House to attend mass at St. John's Episcopal Church.

The Rev. Michael Angell spoke in his sermon about "a summer of violence," including the July 20 Aurora, Colo., movie theater shooting that killed 12 people, the Aug. 5 Oak Creek, Wis., Sikh temple shooting that killed six and a shooting Wednesday at the conservative Family Research Council policy organization nine blocks from the church.

The first family took communion from Angell following the sermon.

Readings during the service included Ephesians 5 and John 6, CNN reported.

The Obamas have attended services at nine different Washington churches, including Baptist, African Methodist Episcopal and the Washington National Cathedral, an Episcopal cathedral officially known as the Cathedral Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, the White House said.

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