'Make America Great Again' Sung to Trump by Church Choir, Copyrighted for Church Services

U.S. President Donald Trump (L) is greeted by Pastor Jeffress at the Celebrate Freedom Rally in Washington, U.S. July 1, 2017. | (Photo: REUTERS/Yuri Gripas)

Correction appended

President Donald Trump's campaign slogan "Make America Great Again," which premiered at "Celebrate Freedom Rally" in Washington, D.C., is now available for churches to sing. It was sung by the choir and orchestra of First Baptist Dallas and is available with a CCLI copyright.

The Dallas megachurch choir sang the song at the rally Saturday at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and the song has been listed on the Christian Copyright Licensing International website.

Trump praised the choir during his speech at the rally, saying, "Your music honors our heroes more than words will ever do," according to The Hill.

Robert Jeffress, the First Baptist Dallas pastor who is an early supporter of Trump, also spoke at the rally.

The lyrics of the song include:

"Make America great again
Make America great again
Lift the torch of freedom all across the land
Step into the future joining hand in hand
And make America great again
Yes make America great (again)."

After the song, it was announced that Gary Moore, former minister of music at First Baptist Dallas who is no longer a member there, wrote the song. Moore, who personally chose to license the song for use in other churches, was in attendance and recognized by the emcee. 

Jonathan Aigner, Director of Music Ministries in a PCUSA congregation, criticized the song.

"The problem is that it has been adopted by a significant portion of the evangelical church. It's their mantra, their creed, and their prayer, and they shout it out with nationalistic fervor," Aigner writes in a blog post on Patheos. "Pledging allegiance to God and to America in the same breath, melding together the kingdom of God and self, they pray a blasphemous prayer to a red, white, and blue Jesus."

"How tragically this prayer cancels out the prayer of Jesus himself," Aigner adds. "The political church prays: 'Make America great again!' Jesus prayed: 'Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.' The political church prays: 'Build up our empire!' Jesus prayed: 'Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.'"

In an interview with The Christian Post in May, Pastor Jeffress, who serves on the president's evangelical advisory board, said the president has done more than any previous president, including George W. Bush, to reach out to evangelicals.

"I asked everybody in the room with the president seated beside me, I said, 'how many of you were ever invited by Romney, or McCain, or Bush to a meeting like this where you got to openly dialogue with the president?'" noted Jeffress. "Maybe two raised their hands on one of those presidents. But I said, 'that tells you something.' This president has done more, this candidate has done more to reach out to evangelicals than really any president alive and I think that speaks a great deal to President Trump's interest in what evangelicals think."

Jeffress also appeared on "Fox and Friends" in May, and praised an executive order by Trump in favor of religious freedom.

"What I am saying to people is that this executive order marks the end of the 60-year-old governmental war on religious liberty," the pastor said. "The fact is, it is not a road map — a detailed road map — it's a compass saying [that] government is changing direction."

Correction: Tuesday, July 4, 2017:

An earlier version of this article inaccurately stated that First Baptist Dallas copyrighted the song "Make America Great Again" and was making it available for other churches to use. The song was actually written by Gary Moore, a former minister of music at First Baptist Dallas who is no longer a member of the church.

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