WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden said Thursday that he was “praying for peace” as conflicts like the Israel-Hamas war and the Houthi terror attacks near Yemen rage around the world.

“Not only do we pray for peace, we are actively working for peace, security, dignity for the Israeli people and the Palestinian people,” Biden said at the 2023 National Prayer Breakfast on Capitol Hill, a tradition that dates back to 1953

The event serves as an opportunity for members of Congress and other leaders in Washington to gather, create discourse and show unity over various issues. Among the hundreds who attended were Minority Leader Hakeem Jefferies (D-N.Y.) and Speaker of the House Mike Johnson (R-La.). 

The president reaffirmed his optimism in addressing ongoing polarization and partisanship in Washington. 

“We see each other not as enemies but as fellow human beings,” he said. “My hope is we continue to believe our best days are ahead of us.”

Here are images from the breakfast:


President Biden is introduced at the National Prayer Breakfast in Statuary Hall on Feb. 1, 2024. (Jonah Elkowitz/MNS)

Renowned singer Andrea Bocelli performs in Statuary Hall. (Jonah Elkowitz/MNS)

Johnson and Jefferies address the crowd. (Jonah Elkowitz/MNS)

Senate Chaplain Barry Black addresses the audience, focusing on peace through prayer amidst global conflicts and uncertainty. (Jonah Elkowitz/MNS)

Biden approaches the stage to address the audience. (Jonah Elkowitz/MNS)

Biden speaks about being hopeful, even throughout uncertain times in our nation. (Jonah Elkowitz/MNS)

Bocelli prays with participants during Black’s speech. (Jonah Elkowitz/MNS)

Biden departs the Capitol en route to the White House. (Jonah Elkowitz/MNS)