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What Do Congressional Chaplains Do?

"The American tradition of legislative prayer dates to 1774, when Jacob Duché, the rector of Christ Episcopal Church in Philadelphia, was recruited to offer prayers before the First Continental Congress.

After the Constitution was ratified, the U.S. Senate selected an Episcopal bishop from New York, Samuel Proovost, as its chaplain in April 1789.

For its part, the House of Representatives chose William Linn, a Philadelphia Presbyterian minister, as its first chaplain in May 1789. Proovost and Linn each received an annual salary of US$500. After Congress moved to Washington, D.C., local clergy took turns leading prayer before the permanent chaplaincies were institutionalized." [Read About Chaplains Today].

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