The 16th Annual National Catholic Prayer Breakfast was held virtually on September 23, 2020, allowing Catholics from across America to tune in for the event. Bishop Robert Barron provided the keynote address and William Barr, Attorney General of the United States, was honored with the Christifideles Laici Award.
President Donald Trump spoke as a special guest in a pre-recorded address, praising the work of the Catholic Church in serving the most vulnerable members of society. He also announced that he would sign the Born Alive Executive Order to ensure that babies born alive, even after an attempted abortion, receive proper medical care. A full transcript can be found below.
“It is my great honor to address the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast. I want to thank my good friend, Leonard Leo, and the board members of this wonderful breakfast as well as, of course, the Knights of Columbus. And congratulations to Attorney General Bill Barr—special man—on receiving the annual award.
“I also want to express my deep gratitude to every person who prays for me and for the First Lady and for our country. We love our country. There’s no country like it. I grew up next to a Catholic Church in Queens, New York, and I saw how much incredible work the Catholic Church did for our community. These are amazing people. These are great, great people. Catholic schools give many underserved children the chance to reach their God-given potential. Catholics of all backgrounds share the love of Christ with the most vulnerable as they care for the elderly, the homeless, and neighbors in need. Our nation is strong because of Catholics and all people of faith. We believe in the joy of family, the blessing of freedom, and the dignity of work. And the eternal truth that every child born and unborn is made in the holy image of God.
“I will always protect the vital role of religion and prayer in American society. And I will always defend the sacred right to life. Today I am announcing that I will be signing the Born Alive Executive Order to ensure that all precious babies born alive, no matter their circumstances, receive the medical care that they deserve. This is our sacrosanct moral duty. We are also increasing federal funding for the neonatal research to ensure that every child has the very best chance to thrive and to grow.
“Melania and I recently visited the shrine of Saint John Paul II, a man who had such a profound impact on our country in the world. It was an incredible visit. On his first visit to the United States he concluded his visit to a Catholic parish in Harlem with these words: “Let the good news of Christ radiate from your hearts and the peace that He alone gives remain forever in your souls.” We are very grateful for the millions of Catholics across America who live by these beautiful words and bring hope and joy and light and grace to the world. Thank you. God bless you, and God Bless America, and please, take good care of Bill Barr. He’s very important to all of us.”