This happened in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania on Monday:
It didn’t go over well with some people, most notably the state’s first-ever Muslim woman, who was sworn in that day:
Movita Johnson-Harrell won her Philadelphia seat in a special election earlier this month. A mother and grandmother, she arrived in Harrisburg with 55 guests, more than half of whom she said were fellow Muslims.
But she said her first day in office was marred by an “offensive” invocation before her induction.
Invocations are routine in Harrisburg. They happen before every session day and most come from religious leaders — though a federal ruling last year opened the door to non-theistic speakers as well.
GOP leaders are appealing it.
Freshman Representative Stephanie Borowicz, a Clinton County Republican, was tapped to give the opening remarks the day of Johnson-Harrell’s swearing-in.
In under two minutes, Borowicz, a Christian, mentioned Jesus 13 times and praised President Donald Trump for his unequivocal support of Israel.
“God forgive us,” she said to her assembled colleagues. “Jesus, we’ve lost sight of you. We’ve forgotten you God, and our country. And we’re asking you to forgive us, Jesus.”
Toward the end of the representative’s remarks, at least one member on the chamber floor could be heard shouting objections. House Speaker Mike Turzai nudged Borowicz on the shoulder, and she wrapped things up with a quick “in Jesus’ name, amen.”
Johnson-Harrell said she was taken aback and offended — not just for herself, but for her family.
“I knew I was going to receive some discrimination because of my religion,” she said. “Because I’m a hijabi woman. And I am the first…but I did not think it would come on the actual day of my swearing-in.”