President Donald Trump reminded Americans to strive to “foster a culture of deeper understanding and respect” while expressing his gratitude to God in his Christmas greeting on Dec. 25.
“During this joyous time of year, we join a grateful Nation in thanking God for His abundant blessings and boundless love,” he said in the message.
“While the challenges that face our country are great, the bonds that unite us as Americans are much stronger. Together, we must strive to foster a culture of deeper understanding and respect—traits that exemplify the teachings of Christ.”
The president also reminded Americans to cherish the religious freedoms they enjoy and paid tribute to the men and women of the Armed Forces.
“As Commander in Chief, I salute them for their service and thank their family members for their shared sacrifice in this noble mission, especially during the holiday season,” he said.
Trump has repeatedly shown his respect and gratitude for American troops. On Christmas eve, Trump made a teleconference call to troops stationed around the world, including Marines in Afghanistan, an Army unit in Kuwait, troops aboard the USS Forest Sherman in the Gulf of Aden, and a Coast Guard station in Alaska.
During his call from his Mar a Lago resort in Florida, he told the troops that they were “tremendous warriors” and thanked them for their “brave and selfless service.”
He also greeted airmen who were stationed at Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri, expressing appreciation for their work in stopping terrorist groups.
“You crushed ISIS from the air, kept the Taliban running scared and conducted countless lethal airstrikes against the enemies of freedom,” he said.
Along with U.S. troops, the president also expressed his gratitude to federal employees in a letter he posted to Twitter. He also signed an executive order to excuse federal employees from working on Christmas eve.
“Your devoted and vigilant efforts are critical to our Nation’s success, as we work together to serve the citizens of our magnificent Country,” he wrote.
“Your great contributions to this Nation are why I am pleased to inform you that I recently signed into law major improvements to compensation and benefits for Federal Employees included in the 2020 appropriations package and the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act,” he added.
To Our Incredible Federal Workforce: pic.twitter.com/zIyXW834H5
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 21, 2019
Trump and First Lady Melania Trump spent part of their Christmas eve attending a music-filled church service at a Southern Baptist Convention-affiliated church before celebrating the holiday with dinner in the ballroom of his private club.