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Controversy over pastor who prayed at USA embassy in Jerusalem

Controversy over pastor who prayed at USA embassy in Jerusalem

Smith didn't criticize the Trump administration's decision to include Jeffress as part of the delegation sent to Jerusalem for the opening of the U.S. Embassy in that city. Trump in December past year recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital and announced an embassy move from Tel Aviv, prompting protests in the occupied Palestinian territories and several Muslim-majority countries. It has put the odds with most of the worldwide community and sparked deadly protests. "Jerusalem is the eternal capital of Israel, and I am very proud of my country and my president for recognizing that fact", said Hagee.

US Jewish groups on Monday expressed gratitude to President Donald Trump for keeping a campaign promise to move the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem following a ceremony in Israel's capital on Monday.

President Donald Trump and Pastor Robert Jeffress, left, participate in the Celebrate Freedom Rally at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., on July 1, 2017.

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Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney blasted the choice of Jeffress on Twitter: "Robert Jeffress says 'you can't be saved by being a Jew, ' and 'Mormonism is a heresy from the pit of hell.' He's said the same about Islam". "This moment would not have been possible were it not for President Trump's courage and the unwavering commitment of CUFI's 4.1 million members".

Jeffress responded with the tweet: "Historic Christianity has taught for 2,000 years that salvation is through faith in Christ alone".

"I'm going to be thanking God for the strong leadership of Benjamin Netanyahu, who is absolutely determined to protect Israel", Jeffress said.

The embassy's relocation formally breaks from decades of established American policy and worldwide practice in a move United States officials say will create greater regional stability.

"As a Christian, I am called to stand with the Jewish people, so I will always remain an unapologetic supporter of the free and democratic State of Israel", Jentezen Franklin, senior pastor of Free Chapel Worship Center and its satellite campuses in Gainesville, Georgia, told Breitbart News.

Jeffress' participation in the program, announced last week, renewed attention to past comments he has made about non-Christian faiths.

"The United States remains fully committed to facilitating a lasting peace agreement", Trump said.