Pastor Paula White and President Donald Trump have been friends for years, and the “prosperity gospel” preacher believes she was directed by God to introduce Trump to the Almighty, according to Newsweek.
White, who is the president’s spiritual adviser, said during an interview with The Guardian that God explicitly told her to “show him who I am,” referring to Trump.
“I encounter thousands of people, millions of people, over the course of ministry, but there’s been a handful of people that I knew was like, this was direct assignment,” she told The Guardian, adding that God's instruction was “directly regarding Trump.”
In 2011, Trump held a prayer meeting at Trump Tower, according to White, where he invited 30 pastors to pray over his potential run for president. For six hours, she said, the pastors sought out God’s thoughts about a Trump presidency. Trump joined them for about three hours.
The 52-year-old White has her own ministry — Paula White Ministries — and is also the senior pastor at New Destiny Christian Center in Florida, which Newsweek noted “draws thousands of worshipers to its weekly services and generates tens of millions of dollars in revenue.”
White’s ministry and success are predicated on the so-called prosperity gospel, which “teaches that devotion to the Christian faith leads to material riches on Earth and encourages heavy donations to the church.”
For his part, Trump has never shown himself to much of a religious man and has fashioned a “reputation as a hedonistic New York playboy,” as Newsweek put it.
But evangelicals appear drawn to the president at least in part because they believe he will fulfill their wishes on issues like abortion and religious freedom.
Of course, Trump’s evangelical Christian support likely gets a boost thanks to the praise of evangelical leaders like White as well.