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 Steve Jalsevac/LifeSite

ARLINGTON, Virginia, August 29, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – “Spend more time on your knees than on the Internet,” Vice President Mike Pence told attorneys for the Christian and pro-life Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) earlier this month.

Pence was having a “fireside chat” with ADF President Michael Farris on August 6.

“Mr. Vice President, you receive frequent critiques from some in the media, some pundits, and some people who just don’t like what you’re doing politically,” said Farris. “But our team is also under a regular attack from our critics. You handle this all with so much grace and character. It’s inspiring to me and to our whole team. What advice can you give to us about how to handle these kinds of attacks when we’re faced with them?”

Pence responded, “Well, first, I’m very humbled by your comment, Mike. I appreciate it very much. And I would just say maybe a couple of things.  Number one is: Spend more time on your knees than on the Internet.”

The vice president’s suggestion was met with applause. 

As Christians, “we’re charged to pray for our loved ones but also pray for our enemies,” he continued. “And I — you have lots of opportunities in politics to do that. But I would say that forgiveness is a great gift. And I — my wife and I literally try and work through forgiving people who might speak willfully against us or might mischaracterize who we are or what our family is all about.”

Pence said he’s “incredibly proud” of his wife Karen, who has been criticized for teaching at a Christian school that follows Christian teaching on marriage. 

“I remember I saw one commentator on television that said, ‘Well, the Vice President should have assumed this was going to become controversial when his wife started teaching art at a Christian school,’” he said to the audience’s laughter. “We honestly didn’t see that one coming.”

Pence continued: 

And our kids went to this school. They — when I was in Congress, our kids all went to this Christian school. They went to public high school. They — my son is a Marine Corps pilot and married. My daughter is an author. And my other daughter is going to finish law school next year. So they’re doing great. We’re proud of all of them.

But I think a lot of it is just extending grace. And finally, I just say, just focusing on the cause. You know, there — I really do think it’s important that we stay focused on things that are more important than ourselves, that are more important than any intermittent controversy that might arise.

And for me, that’s about being a part of an administration and standing next to a President that’s rebuilding our military; who’s revived our economy; who’s appointing a historic number of conservatives to our federal courts; who’s standing, as I said, for our first freedom, for religious liberty, for the right to life. And that’s — I get up every day and I just — I feel incredibly blessed to be a small part of an administration that is making America great again. So, focus on the positive.

‘Greatest honor of my life’ to be part of pro-life Trump administration

Pence criticized speech codes on college campuses as “antithetical to the process of learning,” but said he’s inspired by President Donald Trump’s support of free speech and the “courageous stand” young people have taken for the First Amendment.

He and Farris also discussed the Trump administration’s strong defense of preborn babies.

“It is the greatest honor of my life to serve as Vice President to a President who stands without apology for the sanctity of human life,” said Pence, noting Trump has expanded the Mexico City Policy (now called Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance) and signed a bill overturning an Obama-era rule forcing states to fund Planned Parenthood through Title X.

“I’ve long believed that a society can be judged by how it deals with its most vulnerable — the aged, the infirm, the disabled, and the unborn,” said Pence. “And I promise you, this President, his Vice President, and this administration will always stand for life.”

He called the day he “accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior in 1978” the “greatest day of my life.”

“[God’s] grace has sustained me and my wife, my family, and does every day…The lessons I’ve learned in public life are — in terms of sustaining that — is to make time. Make time for renewing your mind. Karen and I try and spend a little bit of time in prayer and reading the Bible every day. And that’s a very renewing and important time for us.”