Donald Trump was gifted a traditional Jewish prayer shawl by a pastor during a visit to a black church in Detroit.
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) September 3, 2016
Bishop Wayne Jackson of the Great Faith Ministries in Detroit draped the tallit around the Republican presidential nominee’s shoulders Saturday after Trump addressed the congregation.
“Let me just put this on you,” Jackson said as the congregation burst into applause.
“This is a prayer shawl straight from Israel. Whenever you’re flying from coast to coast — I know you just came back from Mexico and you’ll be flying from city to city — there is an anointing. And anointing is the power of God,” he said. “It’s going to be sometimes in your life that you’re going to feel forsaken, you’re going to feel down, but the anointing is going to lift you up. I prayed over this personally and I fasted over it, and I wanted to just put this on you.”
The pastor also presented Trump with two Jewish Heritage Study Bibles, one for the candidate and one for his wife, Melania Trump.
Ivanka Trump, Donald Trump’s daughter, is a convert to Orthodox Judaism.
Jews traditionally wear a tallit for prayer, following a commandment in the book of Deuteronomy. Some Christian churches have adopted the practice, however.
Trump visited the church in an effort to reach out to the African-American community, which polls show overwhelming support his opponent, the Democratic presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton.
“I’m here today to learn so that we can together remedy injustice in any form, and so that we can also remedy economics so that the African-American community can benefit economically through jobs and income and so many other different ways,” Trump said in his address to the congregation.
Many took to social media to criticize and mock the incident.
The pastor just gave Trump a tallis from Israel. Which is just … no. Just no. No no no. pic.twitter.com/fh29tpFyXL
— Kaili Joy Gray (@KailiJoy) September 3, 2016
You guys, a Jewish prayer shawl–a tallit–is a ritual garment. Meant to be worn only by Jews. This is the worst kind of appropriation.
— Rabbi Danya Ruttenberg (@TheRaDR) September 4, 2016