ROCKVILLE CENTRE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Following John F. Kennedy, Joe Biden on Wednesday became only the second Catholic president in the history of the United States.
And many closest to him practice another faith.
Steps from St. Agnes Cathedral in Rockville Centre, parishioners were talking to CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan about religion.
“I feel great about it. I mean, I’m Catholic,” one person said.
“We all bleed the same,” a man said.
“I’m so happy. yeah,” another person said.
They said they are happy and proud that Biden is Roman Catholic.
— Cardinal Dolan (@CardinalDolan) January 20, 2021
“We ask the Holy Spirit to bring wisdom and guidance and inspiration upon our new president,” Archbishop of New York Timothy Cardinal Dolan said.
Many Catholics will watch President Biden try to navigate through polarizing issues that Kennedy never had to take a position on, such as abortion, LGBTQ rights, and climate change.
While the new president goes to mass every Sunday and prays the rosary, many of his grandchildren will be in synagogue. All three of his children married into Jewish families.
“Unifying people, religiously, I think is a great thing,” one person said.
“I love it. I love to see the different religions coming together,” another added.
MORE FROM CBS NEW YORK
And let’s not forget Vice President Kamala Harris’ husband, Douglas Emhoff, the second gentleman, is also Jewish, to the surprise and delight of many.
“I believe this is the beginning of a very exciting moment for the United States of America, I think the strength in diversity,” said Rabbi Anchelle Perl of the Chabad of Mineola.
For the United States of American, the new administration shows strength in diversity.
“Diversity is great,” one person said.
“This is America. Everybody is free to believe whatever they believe,” a woman said said.
“We’re all under the same one person up on top. Bring ’em together,” a man said.
“I believe that’s perfect because that is what America is all about,” another man added.
President Biden won the Catholic vote by a narrow majority during the election. He says it’s time to focus on values of healing, compassion and decency.
CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan contributed to this report