Pastor at US Embassy opening in Jerusalem said Hitler was 'sent by God'

A pair of pastors with a history of offensive remarks about other religions have delivered prayers at the US Embassy opening in Jerusalem, Israel - despite fierce criticism over their selection.

Among the contentious comments by evangelical leader Reverend John Hagee and Dr Robert Jeffress were disparaging comments about Islam and Judaism - the two most prominent religions in Israel.

Rev Hagee once spoke of Adolf Hitler as a hunter sent by God to kill Jews in a 1990 sermon that resurfaced in 2008, claiming the Holocaust was the fulfilment of a biblical prophecy found in Jeremiah.

Dr Jeffress has also attracted criticism for attacking Islam as "evil" and saying that it "promotes paedophilia", while also viciously denouncing homosexuals and Mormons.

But despite their remarks, both pastors were invited to the embassy opening on Monday (local time), where they delivered prayers affirming President Donald Trump and his controversial decision to shift the US Embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv.

"We thank you, O Lord, for President Donald Trump's courage in acknowledging to the world a truth that was established 3000 years ago - that Jerusalem is and always shall be the eternal capital of the Jewish people," Rev Hagee said.

Added Dr Jeffress: "I believe I speak for every one of us when I say I thank you every day that you have given us a President who boldly stands on the right side of history but more importantly stands on the right side of you, O God, when it comes to Israel."

The White House's decision to invite the pair to pray has been criticised heavily, with former presidential hopeful Mitt Romney among the most vocal detractors.

The embassy opening, while already controversial, was marred further by the killing of at least 52 and wounding of thousands more Palestinian protesters by the Israeli Defence Force on Monday.


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