What Do Our Presidents, Past and Present, Feel About Our National Day of Prayer? Answers Here.

Our nation’s presidents have a long history of seeking and praying to God both in times of thankfulness, and in crisis. From George Washington to President Trump, the common thread among the presidents listed here is that they understood the need to humbly pray to God.

After the Whiskey Rebellion in western Pennsylvania, George Washington declared January 1, 1796, a national day of prayer. “All persons within the United States, to … render sincere and heart thanks to the great Ruler of nations … and fervently beseech the kind Author of these blessings…”


President John Adams declared a national day of prayer and fasting on March 23, 1798, during a threatened war with France.

James Madison declared two national days of prayer, and a national day of fasting, during the War of 1812.

In 1860, President Buchanan declared a national day of prayer and fasting to quell civil strife. “In this the hour of our calamity and peril to whom shall we resort for relief but to the God of our fathers?” he said.

President Lincoln, in his national-day-of-prayer statement in 1863, said, “The awful calamity of civil war, which now desolates the land, may be but a punishment inflicted upon us for our presumptuous sins. … We have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious Hand which preserved us in peace…”

In 1901 President Theodore Roosevelt declared a national day of prayer after President McKinley was assassinated.

President Woodrow Wilson declared a national day of prayer in 1918 when the United States entered World War I: “A Day of Public Humiliation, Prayer and fasting, and do exhort my fellow citizens … to pray to Almighty God that He may forgive our sins.”

Let us join our fellow citizens on Thursday, May 4, in praying for our leaders and our country, and for each other!

This list provided courtesy of American Minute

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