Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump is expected to host a meeting of religious leaders Sept. 28. Sources within the Trump campaign say this private meeting is not affiliated with the campaign.
“I was privy to meet Mr. Trump and I immediately liked him,” said Pastor Darrell Scott of the New Spirit Revival Center, who plans to attend the meeting and met Trump several years ago. “I liked his style, his bravado, his charisma and for lack of a better word his honesty.”
Dr. Scott, who has led his Cleveland based church for 22 years, says he reached out to Trump after he announced his candidacy asking for this type of meeting and offered to help round up religious leaders from around the country.
“There will be Evangelical leaders, Pentecostal, there will be some Rabbis – it’s going to be a melting pot. Black, white and Hispanic representation as well,” said Scott.
Trump Organization EVP Michael Cohen says the event is being “organized by several very high profile evangelical preachers including Dr. Scott.”
On the campaign trail, Trump has not talked about his religious views except to say he is a Presbyterian and next to Trump: The Art of the Deal, which he wrote, his favorite book is the Bible.
Responding to a question from ABC’s Tom Llamas during his media avail Tuesday in Dubuque, IA Trump said “I love the bible. I’m a Presbyterian. I went to Sunday school. Dr. Norman Vincent was my pastor, to this day one of the great speakers I’ve seen,” he said.
“You hated to leave church. You hated when the sermon was over. That’s how great he was. One of the things that’s so incredible about the New Hampshire numbers is I lead with everybody…But one of the groups I lead with substantially Evangelicals.”
Dr. Scott, who is African American, dismisses the suggestion by some that Trump is a racist.
“I know for a matter of fact he is not. We’re going to exchange ideas and dispel any notion at this meeting because people’s opinions have been formed based on others. You can’t be a racist and be as successful as he is. He’s very genuine,” said Scott.
Scott also said he admires Trump’s leadership.
“I want to hear straight from him his view points, his ideas, his strategies for America and to see if we share common beliefs and goals. I want to expose him to the African American community,” says Scott who has one hope of Mr. Trump eventually attending one of his Sunday services in Cleveland. “I tell people if you knew him you’d like him.”
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