On April 26, Rep. Grace F. Napolitano (D-Calif.) asked Father Michael “Mike” Gutiérrez to deliver the opening prayer at the U.S. House of Representatives. Napolitano had recommended Father Gutiérrez, a priest from her congressional district, to serve as guest pastor of the House for the day.

“We are so blessed to have Father Mike lead the House of Representatives in prayer today,” Napolitano said. “For the past four years, Father Mike has generously opened his parish hall to host our annual immigration clinic. He is not afraid to speak truth to power, encouraging activism on issues that impact our local communities. May God continue to bless you and your ministry, Father Mike.”

Father Gutiérrez has been a Catholic diocesan priest for 24 years and is currently serving as pastor of St. John the Baptist Church in Baldwin Park, where he leads a parish of 10,000 families.