Holy Day

First Family Attends Easter Services

As millions commemorated Easter around the globe Sunday, the Obamas attended services at Allen Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church, a historically African-American congregation in Southeast Washington, D.C.'s poorest neighborhood. Local residents were surprised and delighted to find the head of state in their neck of the woods. "At night, you can't walk through this neighborhood," LaJuan Dixon-Fleming told The Washington Post. "Not in a million years would you think the president would come to church on Alabama Avenue Southeast on Easter Sunday." The first family arrived just after 11 a.m., and near the close of the service they came forward to receive Communion. White House officials said they selected the chapel for its community-outreach initiatives: Allen Chapel hosts more than 50 programs that serve the neighborhood, including an after-school tutoring program and a food pantry that draws hundreds of families weekly.