The Office of the Chaplain United States House of Representatives

Doctor Ken Whitten

Idlewild Baptist Church
Lutz, FL

Sponsor: Rep. Gus Bilirakis, (R-FL)
Date of Prayer: 05/22/2013

One Minute Speech Given in Recognition of the Guest Chaplain:

Mr. BILIRAKIS. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to welcome Pastor Ken Whitten before the House of Representatives.

Pastor Whitten serves as the senior pastor at Lutz, Florida's, Idlewild Baptist Church, which has served the Tampa Bay community for almost 80 years.

While originally based out of an old garage building, today it serves a congregation of more than 12,000 members on a 143–acre campus.

Under Pastor Whitten's leadership, the Idlewild family has placed a focus on both local and global missions, a biblical guidance ministry, instructional classes for those who seek to grow spiritually, and activities and ministries for all ages.

Pastor Whitten is a pillar of our community and has guided tens of thousands of people as they develop and grow their personal relationship with the Lord.

Mr. Speaker, I welcome Pastor Whitten to our Nation's capital.

Opening Prayer Given by the Guest Chaplain:

Dear Father in Heaven,

Our heads are bowed because that is the position of humility, a spiritual characteristic that Your Word says brings grace. We fold our hands to express godly fear because You said, ‘‘The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.'' And we all recognize that is the need of this hour and this day.

Our hearts, Lord, break with the families in Moore, Oklahoma. The loss and devastation leave us speechless, but it is in these heart–wrenching days we find ourselves saying that we are not Republicans, Democrats, or Independents; we are one Nation in need of grace, healing, and salvation.

We pray that the decisions made in this Chamber today will reflect Your heart, a heart for the broken, the bruised, the abused, and the abandoned.

May You help us today to think more about the spiritual than the economical, more about the eternal than the temporal; and Lord, may we echo that Puritan prayer of old:

What we know not, teach us.

What we have not, give us.

What we are not, make us.

In Jesus' wonderful name we pray.


To learn more about Members who have sponsored a Guest Chaplain, please visit the Congressional Biographical Directory