Presidential advisor Jared Kushner

According to a new book shining light on the White House inner-circle, Jared Kushner is a member of the Universal Life Church.

In an explosive new book titled “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” author Michael Wolff reports that Jared Kushner, one of the president’s senior advisors and husband of Ivanka Trump, is a ULC minister. Anyone who feels so-called can become an ordained minister by filling out the ordination form located here on our website, provided they abide by our central tenets.

Upon receiving his ordination, Kushner apparently offered to marry MSNBC co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski. “I can marry you! I’m an internet Unitarian minister,” he is quoted as saying.

(We know what you’re thinking: Unitarian? Since Unitarian churches don’t provide online ordination, there is wide consensus that Kushner simply got the name wrong, and in fact meant the Universal Life Church.)

ULC in the White House?

What would it mean to have a ULC minister in the White House? Could Kushner’s affiliation have any effect on White House policy decisions? Certainly the religious affiliations of any influential member of the government are carefully scrutinized and are widely seen to influence decision making.

Kushner’s ordination is especially interesting given that he has thrown himself headfirst into perhaps the most complex faith-issues facing our world.

Most recent was the move to formally recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, widely seen to have been influenced by Kushner – an announcement that angered many Islamic countries in the region and even sparked widespread criticism here in the United States.

The Jerusalem Question

Jerusalem has historically been a flashpoint for religious conflict. Considered a holy site by three major religions – Christianity, Judaism, and Islam – the city has tremendous religious, symbolic, and physical significance.

Jews see Jerusalem as their “original capital”, a major city in the first Kingdom of Israel. Not only that, but it’s home to the holiest site in Judaism, the Western Wall. Muslims believe that Prophet Muhammad ascended to heaven from Jerusalem, and the Dome of the Rock is located there.

Meanwhile, Christian tradition teaches that Jesus was crucified in Jerusalem. Interestingly, many evangelical Christians (sometimes referred to as Christian Zionists) believe that Jewish control of the Holy Land is a prerequisite for the Second Coming of Christ.

The city is currently split into separate sectors, each home to a different religious group and containing important holy sites belonging to their respective faiths. Given this complex relationship, any threat to the status quo in Jerusalem has the potential to provoke a resurgence in its unresolved conflicts.

Kushner, who follows the Jewish faith, reportedly encouraged the president to support Israel’s claim to Jerusalem as the nation’s capital. Some sources claim Kushner’s involvement tipped the scales and was the determining factor in the president’s decision.

Could his status as an ordained minister have had any effect on the process? Perhaps he spent time pondering the ULC tenet of “doing only that which is right” before lobbying the president to support the Israelis.

But Kushner’s sphere of influence extends far beyond Jerusalem’s walls. He’s also been charged with advancing a broader peace deal in the Middle East – a supremely difficult task by any measure. We wonder if his efforts might be aided by pondering the ULC’s guiding belief that we are all children of the same universe.

What is the Universal Life Church?

Arguably, this is not the first time that the ULC may have had a hand in influencing major policy. The Church has a long history of empowering change-makers, movers, and shakers.” The Universal Life Church was founded in 1959 by Kirby J. Hensley. After studying a variety of religious texts, Hensley decided that conventional religious traditions are too constricting, leaving little room for individuality. He concluded that “the proper religion may differ for each person, and everyone is entitled to choose one’s own religion. No one should be criticized or condemned for wanting to practice the beliefs of one’s choice.” Hensley decided to start a church that would allow people to believe whatever they wanted.

The church saw a surge in membership during the Vietnam War – a time of immense social and cultural upheaval when many people turned away from traditional religions and explored other forms of spirituality.

To this day, the ULC continues to stand for spiritual individuality and personal exploration. By knocking down the barriers to traditional ordination, it provides an avenue for people to explore their beliefs, perform religious ceremonies, and even start their own ministries.

The Universal Life Church has two main tenets:

  1. Do only that which is right.
  2. Every individual is free to practice their religion however they please, so long as their actions do not impinge upon the rights of others or violate any laws.

Trump, Wedding Officiant?

We end with this interesting anecdote: Michael Wolff’s book inadvertently sheds light on a potential new hobby for President Trump – officiating weddings. After Jared Kushner offered to officiate the MSNBC hosts’ ceremony, Trump reportedly shot back, “What are you talking about? Why would they want you to marry them when I could marry them? When they could be married by the president! At Mar-a-Lago!”

It’s yet to be seen if Trump will follow in his son-in-law’s footsteps by getting ordained.



  1. Tom says:

    Joseph…doesn’t the ULC have a list of all Members?…as far as Jerusalem is concerned, it has been clear since the late 1940’s that there is no real drive for a Palestinian State; they turned it down at that time, and now it is only a front for the effort to destroy Israel…i do not agree with Trump on almost anything; i consider him an accidental President who is way too narcissistic to be a good President, but his support for Israel, the only real democracy in the area, is exactly right…Tom

  2. Randy Charles Ford says:

    ” Unitarian” is an inclusive term for those who believe there is One God, frequently with the man Christ Jesus being his begotten son, raised by Him, and made the Lord. It is often used in contrast to “Trinitarian”: those who believe in a three-part God.

    I suspect you erroneously have confused the term with the name of one group: the Unitarian Universalists.

      1. Randy Charles Ford says:

        Mainstream Judaism and Islam, are “unitarian.” They believe in One God. Again, while the term is used in the name of the Unitarian Universalist group, it does not indicate any affiliation with that group. It stands in contrast to “polytheism” and “trinitarianism.”

  3. James says:

    Christianity was around bend Islam, and the Jewish belief beside that. The land was split between brothers. Since then its always been a sour grapes issue. I say the middle east should return to a kingdom. One person to rule and control the Muslim nations. One person to hold accountable.

  4. janice Ellery says:

    I am not sure if I wish to remain in an organization associated with Trump.

    1. azrm says:

      I know just what you mean. Certainly diminishes my status. Sorry if this offends anyone, but I totally believe in the separation of church and state!!

    2. William Billings says:

      It is so sad that people judge one thing by one other thing. God blessed us with the ULC to be a blessing to others. Are you really going to give that away because you don’t like a certain person. SAD!

    3. Lissy cordon says:

      Haha,what a shame!

    4. T'Keren Valmaz says:

      Honestly some days I feel that way just because of the Christian radicals on the forums here. Its sickening that so many who chose to be ordained via the ULC seem to have no appreciation for its non denominational foundation.

      However I see it as their choice to be intolerant closed minded fools and accept that their actions are in no way connected to my own.

      Be the minister you want to be, and leave the rest to their own nature. Its all we can do in our efforts to help people find their footing on the path to becoming part of the universe.

      1. Val Jester says:

        There is a significant difference between an open mind and a drafty mind.

      2. Jeri says:

        I completely agree with you! That’s why I’ve decided to delete my account on this site.

    5. Rev. Bet Bailey says:

      I understand where you are coming from, Janice. I, too, thought, “If Trump gets his fingers into this, we all are going to look pretty sad.” I believe this would be a good time to practice separation of church and state. I also believe that, as with any religion, there are the devout and there are odd ducks. I believe that Spirit can help us to keep ULC a clean, holy place regardless of a few unfortunate individual mockers. I pray this is so.

    6. Ron says:

      I am not normally one of those love it or leave it people, but you may as well renounce your citizen ship and leave the country since the Unied States is an organization associated with Trump and you yourself have said you are not sure If you want to remain in such an organization.

    7. William Kramer says:

      I also am not sure if I wish to remain in an organization associated with Trump. What an embarrassment. Yet I will endure because I like to think that I am a blessing where needed and where the thought process is that the only ones that “know anything” have a license to prove it. I know we are not supposed to judge. However, I am so grateful that God gave us the blessing of wisdom and that this wisdom came unto our political realm to limit the Presidency so that we only have to deal with the incompetency for 4 years.

    8. Carl Elfstrom says:

      Don’t let the door hit you in your ass on your way out. My religious beliefs don’t have anything to do with people, or my personal feelings regarding anyone. I could be wrong but it doesn’t seem like personal likes and dislikes of individuals are endorsed by the ULC. Perhaps you can find another organization that is also against Trump. Have you thought about becoming a democrat?

      1. Val Jester says:


      2. Val Jester says:

        This really is not a church filled with people who are a blessing to others. We are populated with whining liberals who hate trump.

  5. Amanda says:

    He did it for the press kit.

  6. rabbi jim says:

    Greetings fellow members! I am a firm believer in the concept of ULC. Also, I am pleased to see that Mr. Kushner is a member of the Jewish faith. I hope that he will support all moralistic issues in the white house, not only for the Jewish people, but for all americans. Also, I hope he will influence the government to provide more assistance to poor and very low income senior citizens of our country in the way of housing and social security benefits reform. Poor and very low income seniors are in great need of help today in this expensive economy. Let’s take care of our parents and grandparents – we owe it to them! Shalom, and a wonderful and happy greeting to all for this new year ahead!

    1. Lissy cordon says:

      I AGREE

    2. William says:

      Amen and Shalom to you as well my friend!!

  7. Linda Happenny says:

    Is this for real? Now he will be telling Trump Sacred thought and telling ULC what can be said about trump good or bad. Not happy! Just saying

    1. Ron says:

      Are you serious?

    2. Carl Elfstrom says:

      It’s best not to project into the future, but live in the present moment, for that’s all we ever have. Minister Jared Kushner, welcome to ULC. I bet your comments on the ULC ministers blog will be much better than your father in laws’ tweets, and I look forward to reading them in eager anticipation. Shalom, and Blessed Be!

  8. Valerie Ward says:

    If this is true then Mr K respects nor follows neither of ULC’s tenets. 45’s s-i-l is a perfect fit in that family. I pray the Light breaks through all that darkness! Blessed Be. Rev Dr Valerie.

  9. A1 Tom says:

    No matter what your religion or political affiliation, God will bless you if you follow his laws , which are simply the Ten Commandments….” most important of these is love” . Let us pray for unification in the world. Amen

    1. T'Keren Valmaz says:

      actually the ten commandments are jewish laws alone, they are not in any way relevant to christians unless you are confused and think the old testament is anything but a what came before story in the christian texts.

      The Christian analogue would be the seven sins. So dont be wrathful, dont be gluttonous, dont be greedy etc.

    2. Carl Elfstrom says:

      It sounds like you know something about Judaism and Christianity. Did you know there are many other religions in this world that don’t have any knowledge of the ten commandants, and get along fine without them. You might try reading the ULC Guide To Divinity.

  10. Rev.Jeff, 1st Chuch of the Gooey Death and Discount House of Worship for the Salvation of your Soul.. says:

    The Western Wall is not the “holiest site in Judaism” and has never been. The holiest site in Judaism is the Temple Mount where the Temple stood.For centuries Muslims essentially ignored Jerusalem until Israel recaptured it. Muhammed’s alleged ascent to heaven was not from Jerusalem. The Quran makes it clear that it was in a dream.

    1. Carl Elfstrom says:

      The Revelation was also a dream, and so were Dorothy’s adventures in Oz. I’ve had many strange dreams and even some nightmares which were totally fictitious and would only be believed in by prophets, and other schizophrenics. Don’t forget to take your medicine. It will clear up those delusions.

  11. Amy says:

    I do not feel one questionable person’s affiliation with an organization is reason to leave. However, I do feel it is the responsibility of that organization to step in and remove an ordination when one of the members – in this case, Jared Kushner – has been indicted for crimes against his own country.
    Just my 2 cents. Also, separation of Church and State. It doesn’t matter is Jared Kushner is an ordained ULC minister in the White House, just like it should not matter that Mike Pence is a “Christian” in the White House. Their religious beliefs should not come before the good of ALL Americans.
    May Peace prevail. /l\

    1. William Billings says:

      Check your facts, he has not been indicted for anything. Hasn’t even been charged with anything. WOW!

      1. Amy says:

        Sorry, my mistake.
        Doesn’t change the fact that he lied about meeting with Russian officials. He just hasn’t been indicted… yet.

        1. Val Jester says:

          Amy take a couple of deep breaths. Jared did not lie about meeting with the Russians. You might also be surprised to know that it is NOT illegal to meet with the Russians for ANY political purpose. Collusion is not illegal. Conspiracy is. Facts will never conform to your emotions.

    2. Ron says:

      Amy. Please tell us exactly what crimes he has been indicted for. No one else but you seems to know about it.

      1. Carl Elfstrom says:

        There are a lot of good criminals who are also very religious and spiritual. My favorite movie was called Catch Me If You Can. And I can almost swear that anyone who claims to have never lied is a liar. Some of us are more proficient at it than others. I’ve ministered enough for the night, so I’m going to sit back, smoke a joint, and try to have a spiritual experience. I suggest y’all do the same. Don’t worry, it will soon be legal, and no longer a criminal act.And by the way, did y’all know there are convicts in prison who are ULC ministers, and became ministers while in prison. I knew one who was on death row, and performed the wedding ceremony of two friends of mine during his first escape. However, he has since been caught and executed, but died with strong faith in God.

        1. Carl Elfstrom says:

          You don’t have to be a goodie two shoes or a sissy to be a minister. And a damn good one at that!

          1. Val Jester says:

            Carl, you raise a great ministerial question. Is it ever acceptable to deliberately mislead?

  12. Joanne says:

    Jared is orthodox Jewish and his wife, Ivanka, converted to orthodox Jewish before they were married. They are raising their children orthodox also. I don’t believe a word of this story.

    1. Rick Pascal says:

      Joanne…Jared is “orthodox” in name only. He is not a faithful Sabbath observer, and neither is his wife.

      1. T'Keren Valmaz says:

        Same can be said of most wealthy jewish families. Like most all people of extreme wealth they really dont spare a thought to the rest of the world.

        How many do as Stephen King and say the government should tax the wealthy in the extreme to prevent excess wealth build up. He has gone on record asking for more taxes on people like him as he feels he simply has too much money and even admits how charities are just scams to let the wealthy avoid paying their taxes.

        1. Ron says:

          Maybe he should back up his words with action and give it all away.

          1. Rev.Jeff, 1st Chuch of the Gooey Death and Discount House of Worship for the Salvation of your Soul.. says:

            How exactly do you know what “most Jewish wealthy families” do or don’t do with their money or thoughts?

        2. Carl Elfstrom says:

          Sounds like Stephen King is a self-defeatist.

        3. Val Jester says:

          Nothing keeps them from sending extra money to the treasury. Talk is cheap. Another minor concept, very few poor people ever employ other people.

      2. Rev.Jeff, 1st Chuch of the Gooey Death and Discount House of Worship for the Salvation of your Soul.. says:

        And how exactly do you know one way or the other about his, or anyone else’s level of actual observance?

        1. Carl Elfstrom says:

          Maybe he practices remote viewing or astral projection, or just forgot to take his medicine today.

      3. Rev.Jeff, 1st Chuch of the Gooey Death and Discount House of Worship for the Salvation of your Soul.. says:

        how exactly do you know this?

    2. Carl Elfstrom says:

      I thought all orthodox Jewish men had long beards and carried diamonds in their hats. How did Jared get out of that? He sure is cunning. All power to you, Jared! If he. runs for President, he’s got my vote.

  13. John Shephard says:

    Thank you, God, for your son and our brother Donald Trump, who is making America great again through not only undoing the failed policies of another son and brother, whom I always refer to good-naturedly as oblabla (bless his heart for trying), but is also reviving the the spirit and fortunes of our country through innovative new policies, which will in turn revive the spirit and fortunes of all brothers and sisters throughout the world.

    1. William Billings says:

      AMEN! !!!!

      1. Lissy cordon says:


        1. JOHN MAHER says:


    2. Amy says:

      I find it impossible to believe that God would support a Nazi supporter and sympathizer. Donald Trump will not make America great at all. He is the antithesis of everything that Christ taught. I am at a loss as to how so many who profess to believe in goodness can support a man like him.
      Separation of church and state, no matter what church it is.

      1. Val Jester says:

        Please tell me what your understanding is of the separation of church and state?

    3. Val Jester says:

      Amen to you John Shepherd. Prayers for John Maher whose rubber bands are wound way too tight and are starting to snap making him say things that are not too smart. Bless you heart John Maher.

  14. chomei says:

    Is this a violation of the separation of church and state?

    1. Val Jester says:

      What exactly is a violation of church and state?

  15. Ron says:

    I am pleased to see the reach of ULC. If every one who sought forgiveness and mercy from God wanted all to be exactly like that person, then no church would have more than one member. I remember talking to my mom’s cousin who was an army Chaplin. He served through WWII with McArthur, in Korea, where he won a Silver Star, a purple heart and a combat infantryman badge. He also served in Viet Nam. He told me all men bled red and all men who cried out to God got his attention and comfort . I ask him if that included enemy soldiers. Yes, he replied. All men are created by God and all need to know God loves them no matter where or when. Death only offers two paths and even when dying it iscnot too late for salvation.

    1. Tom says:

      Ron…every person is his or her own one-person church..religions (and governments) try to make laws for all, and it does not work, because each person is on his or her own path to peace in God…peace…Tom

  16. Reverend Ian says:

    In the best possible language. The rest of the world thinks, He’s nucking futs.

  17. Amber Fry says:

    Being ordained doesn’t mean a person is above and beyond bad choices. It doesn’t suddenly mean that a person cannot do any wrong. They are still human and equal to everyone else. It simply gives a person legal rights to perform a marriage. It makes no difference to me that he’s been ordained. What makes a difference is how he behaves. What choices he makes on behalf of the people he supposedly stands for and if he’s actually listening to the majority or is another 1%er out to screw as many people as he can before he gets hauled away to jail.

  18. Carl Elfstrom says:

    It’s not about pleasing you or other ministers, but about pleasing the ULC. They aren’t asking us to vote on the matter.I think many of you are jealous of Jared.I would’nt even be surprised if he was a better minister than you. What ever happened to innocent until proven guilty? That’s the American way.Regardless of that your opinion doesn’t matter. Nothing you say or do is going to change anything.So cry and stomp your feet, little baby.

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