The Fifty-Seventh Presidential Inauguration on January 21, 2013 presented by the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies.

News Release

  • For Immediate Release
  • January 08, 2013
  • Matt House
  • (202) 224-2228

Chairman Schumer Invites the Reverend Luis Cort├ęs to Offer the Opening Prayer at the 2013 Presidential Inaugural Luncheon

Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer, Chairman of the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies (JCCIC), announced that he has invited The Reverend Luis Cortés to offer the opening prayer at the 2013 Presidential Inaugural Luncheon following the Inaugural ceremonies at the U.S. Capitol on January 21, 2013.  The luncheon will be hosted by the Joint Committee to honor President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.


“It’s my privilege to invite The Reverend Luis Cortés to offer the opening prayer at the Inaugural Luncheon,” said Schumer. “As a devoted and respected Evangelical leader, The Reverend has dedicated his life to making his community, his county and the world a better place to live. I look forward to his prayer, and am thrilled that he will play such a key role in these historic events.”


“Chairman Schumer and the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies have bestowed a great honor on me by asking me to serve during the inauguration,” said The Reverend Cortés. “It is a unique opportunity for which I am grateful to Senator Schumer and the Committee. I look forward to my participation.”


In 1987 The Reverend Luis Cortés founded Esperanza, the largest Hispanic faith-based evangelical network in the United States. Under his leadership and dedication, Esperanza continued to grow and expand its services. Esperanza now helps to fight poverty, crime and improve access to quality schools and affordable housing.


The Reverend Cortés will offer the opening prayer at the 57th Presidential Inaugural Luncheon, following the Inaugural Ceremonies. Attendees will include the newly sworn in President and Vice President, Congressional leaders, members of the Cabinet and former Presidents and Vice Presidents who attend at the Inaugural Ceremonies. Additional details regarding the luncheon will be provided at a later date.


The Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies is responsible for the oversight and planning of the Presidential Inauguration and related ceremonies on the U.S. Capitol grounds.


The Joint Committee was authorized by S. Con. Res. 35, which passed the Senate on March 1, 2012, and the House on March 5th.  Members of JCCIC are appointed by the Vice President and the Speaker of the House. In accordance with tradition, the Senate representatives on JCCIC are Majority Leader Harry Reid, Rules Committee Chairman Charles E. Schumer, and Rules Committee Ranking Member Lamar Alexander.  The House members of JCCIC are Speaker John A. Boehner, Majority Leader Eric Cantor, and Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi.


S. Con. Res. 35 established the date of the 2013 Inauguration as Monday, January 21, 2013, since January 20, 2013 falls on a Sunday.  This is the seventh time in U.S. history that the constitutionally mandated Inauguration date has fallen on a Sunday.  The last time was for President Ronald Reagan’s second Inauguration in 1985.  When this occurs, the public ceremonies traditionally are held on Monday.


In addition, January 21, 2013 is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. It will be the second time that this federal holiday has coincided with a Presidential Inauguration. The first was President Bill Clinton’s second Inauguration in 1997.