'Islamophobia: Critics decry Christian prayer at swearing-in of Muslim lawmaker

A critic said that prayers shouldn't be "weaponized."

The swearing-in ceremony for Pennsylvania's first Muslim representative would seem like a good time to promote inclusion and diversity.

But, after a Christian prayer was recited at the beginning of the ceremony, some are calling historical moment quite the opposite.

Rep. Movita Johnson-Harrell was sworn in to the state House of Representatives on Monday, but before that happened, Rep. Stephanie Borowicz gave a prayer that some people are saying was inappropriate.

"Jesus, I thank you for this privilege, Lord, of letting me pray, God, that I, Jesus, am your ambassador here to day, representing you, the king of king, the lord of lords," Borowicz said.

Later in the prayer, she said: "God forgive us — Jesus — we’ve lost sight of you, we’ve forgotten you, God, in our country, and we’re asking you to forgive us, Jesus."

In all, Borowicz invoked "Jesus" 13 times, "God" six times and "Lord" four times.

At the end of the prayer, that was videotaped by the state's House Democratic Caucus, the politician standing behind Borowicz is seen allegedly touching her on the elbow, as if to prompt her to wrap up the prayer.

Borowicz did not immediately return ABC News' requests for comment. Her government website notes that she was elected in 2018, describes her as a stay-at-home mom, graduated from a Christian high school and minored in the Bible when she attended a Christian university.

Johnson-Harrell, whose swearing-in was a main feature of Monday's session, said that the prayer sent a message.

"I thought that for the most part, the entire invocation was offensive,” Johnson-Harrell told reporters, according to The Associated Press.

She said that her own religion — Islam — respects Jesus, "but to use Jesus as a weapon is not OK," the AP reported.

Johnson-Harrell went further in a statement to local newspaper The Pennsylvania Capital-Star.

"It blatantly represented the Islamophobia that exists among some leaders — leaders that are supposed to represent the people,” Johnson-Harrell said in a statement sent through text message to The Pennsylvania Capital-Star.

"I came to the Capitol to help build bipartisanship and collaborations regardless of race or religion to enhance the quality of life for everyone in the Commonwealth," she said in the texted statement.

The Washington Post reported that Johnson-Harrell told news outlets that she brought 55 guests with her to the swearing-in, 32 of whom were Muslim.

She's not the only one who is upset. Rep. Jordan A. Harris, the House Democratic Whip, tweeted out a video with his response, saying that the newly-sworn-in representative "deserved more. We deserved more. The chamber deserve more. This is not a place where you should weaponize religion or try to use it to intimidate anyone."