LYNCHBURG, Va. (WSET) -- The White House is firing back at critics of President Trump's meeting with a group of evangelical leaders earlier this week.
Photos posted by some of the invitees show the group surrounding Trump and laying their hands on his shoulders as his head is bent in prayer.
The picture was posted by Johnnie Moore, a former senior vice president at Liberty University; it also showed Vice President Mike Pence, with his eyes shut, participating in the Oval Office prayer session.
"We similarly prayed for President Obama but it's different with President Trump," Moore said. "When we are praying for President Trump, we are praying within the context of a real relationship, of true friendship."
Moore told CNN the meeting happened after a number of national faith leaders were invited to meet the President as they met with representatives from the Office of Public Liaison.
CNN reported that it caused some critics to say they were only praying for the president because of the Russia controversy.
White House spokeswoman, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, was asked about the photo at Wednesday's daily briefing.
She suggested the photo was ignorant, saying "the idea that somebody would only pray when they're in crisis, I think makes you miss the entire point of what prayer is about."