President Celebrates Easter at D.C. Church

Sunday, Apr 24, 2011  |  Updated 1:01 PM EDT
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President Celebrates Easter at D.C. Church

ASSOCIATED PRESS

President Barack Obama departs the White House en route to Easter worship services at the Shiloh Baptist Church in Washington, Sunday, April 24, 2011. He was joined by first lady Michelle Obama and daughters Malia and Sasha. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

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President Barack Obama attended Easter services at a Washington church founded in 1863 by freed slaves.

The first family went to Shiloh Baptist Church, less than two miles north of the White House.

According to the church's pastor, 21 freed slaves made it to the nation's capital from Fredericksburg, Va., to establish a place where they could worship freely and where ``they could reach others with the good news of their salvation.''

Wallace Charles Smith wrote last September, on the church's 147th anniversary, that the group ``could not see the way ahead ...but went forth to a land they felt God had given them.''

Last Easter, the Obamas worshipped at a historically black Methodist church in a different part of the city.
 

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