October 21, 2016 10:32 AM EDT

Cardinal Dolan was admittedly “nervous” about his seating at Thursday night’s Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner: he was placed directly between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. But he said despite the evening’s occasionally biting punchlines, the two candidates shared some companionable time.

“I was very moved by the obvious attempt on behalf of both Secretary Clinton and Mr. Trump to both be courteous, to get along to say nice things privately to one another,” Dolan said on the Today Show Friday.

While Dolan admitted Trump and Clinton could be “kind of awkward” together, he shared an interaction between them that he found “very touching.” Before the dinner began, he asked to pray with the two candidates. After the prayer, he said, “Mr. Trump turned to Secretary Clinton and said, ‘You know you are one tough and talented woman.’ And he said, ‘This has been a good experience in this whole campaign, as tough as it’s been.’ And she said to him, ‘Donald, whatever happens, we need to work together afterwards.'”

But Dolan acknowledged that things weren’t so friendly once each candidate took the stage. “That amity that I just described maybe wasn’t as present during both addresses,” he said.

Write to Tessa Berenson at tessa.berenson@time.com.

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