Congressman Scalise credits power of prayer for his shooting recovery

Sergio Conner
October 1, 2017

Dressed in a purple-and-white Louisiana State University polo and an "I voted" sticker, Scalise posed with his wife, Jennifer Scalise, after casting his vote for posts such as state treasurer, constitutional amendments and public service commissioner.

"Just seeing the faces of all of you means more to me than you could imagine", he said.

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise returned to the U.S. Capitol on Thursday for the first time since the June 14 shooting that left him wounded and in critical condition.

Three and a half months after he was shot during an early morning baseball practice, Louisiana Congressman Steve Scalise, the House majority whip, received thunderous applause and standing ovations from the House floor September 28 where he attributed his recovery to the power of prayer. He further added that his prayer resulted in a sense of calm, raising his hope that God would take care of the situation.

"When I was laying out on that ball field, the first thing I did once I was down and I couldn't do anything anymore, I just started to pray", the congressman said. He also recounted how he prayed for specific things and many of those prayers were answered, which gave him "renewed faith and understanding that the power of prayer is something that you just can not underestimate".

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Scalise was struck in the hip; the bullet tore into blood vessels, bones and internal organs.

The congressman, a parishioner at St. Catherine of Siena Church in Metairie, Louisiana, along with his wife, Jennifer, and their two children, said the past few months have been challenging for him and his family, but he said the outpouring of love, warmth and prayer gave them the "strength to get through all of this".

Scalise expressed gratitude to the U.S. Capitol Police, especially David Bailey and Crystal Griner, who were assigned to his security detail that day.

Scalise was discharged from the hospital in July six weeks after the shooting but still had to undergo "intensive inpatient rehabilitation", according to the hospital. Scalise told the gathering that he had even prayed for both the officers to have the ability to carry out their duties. "You saved my life". Griner was unable to attend Scalise's speech, but Bailey sat in the House gallery. "Thank you so much". Other members also hugged Scalise or patted him on the arm or back as he walked to a podium on the GOP side of the chamber.

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