President Trump and first lady Melania Trump hosted a special Rose Garden event for the National Day of Prayer Thursday afternoon. Vice President Mike Pence and Mrs. Pence were also in attendance.
The National Day of Prayer was created in 1952 by a joint resolution of Congress and signed into law by President Harry S. Truman. In 1988, the law was unanimously amended by both the House and the Senate and signed into law by President Ronald Reagan on Thursday, May 5, 1988, designating the first Thursday of May as a day of national prayer. Every president since 1952 has signed a National Day of Prayer proclamation.
"On this National Day of Prayer, America is engaged in a fierce battle against a terrible disease," Trump said. "In times of challenge, our people have always called upon the gift of faith, the power of prayer, and the eternal glory of God. I ask all Americans to join their voices on their hearts in spiritual union as we ask our Lord in heaven for strength and solace, for courage and comfort, for hope and healing, for recovery and renewal."
"In recent days and weeks, our country has endured great, great hardship," the President continued. We pray for every family stricken with grief and devastated with loss. We pray for the scientists and researchers pioneering treatments that they find therapies and vaccines and that they find them soon. We pray for the frontline workers keeping our nation fed."
Trump also referred to Zephaniah 3:17 found in the Bible's Old Testament.
"The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing."
"We have seen the grace of God through the love and devotion of our fellow citizens as scripture assures us the Lord our God is a mighty one who will save," Trump said. "And I think it's so true. Think of that. The Lord your God is in your midst. A mighty one who will save."
Recognized by the President on the second anniversary of her "Be Best" initiative, Mrs. Trump presented her own special prayer during the event.
"On this National Day of Prayer, let us take a moment to express our deepest sympathies to the families of those who have lost their loved ones to COVID-19," the first lady said. "Let us pray for the ill, the ones who are suffering, and those who are serving on the front lines."
"When evil darkens our world, give us light," Mrs. Trump prayed. "When despair numbs our souls, give us hope. When we stumble and fall, lift us up. When doubt assails us, give us faith. When nothing seems sure, give us trust. When ideals fade, give us vision. When we lose our way, be our guide. That we may find serenity in your presence and purpose in doing your will. Amen."
Pence and his wife Karen opened the National Day of Prayer ceremony in the White House Rose Garden. The vice president spoke about how prayer has always been an important part of their family life.
"For our family, prayer has always been an important part of our lives," Pence said. "Just as it has for millions of Americans. Karen and I will both attest the sweetest words we ever hear are from the people who take a moment, walk up and say 'I'm praying for you,' and you know they mean it from their hearts, and we hear it all the time."
"And as we gather here, I know we feel that it is especially fitting that we do so this year during this time," the vice president continued. "In these times of heartache for tens of thousands of American families and hardship for tens of millions. Now more than ever, it's important that we take time to pause and to pray for America."
Prayer Requests Via Social Media
Mrs. Trump also sent out a special prayer request on social media earlier Thursday.
"As Americans of all faith turn to prayer, this #NationalDayofPrayer reminds us of the grace of God & the importance of faith, family & loved ones in our daily lives," she wrote.
— Melania Trump (@FLOTUS) May 7, 2020
Ivanka Trump, the President's daughter, and advisor, also tweeted out a prayer request.
"This #NationalDayOfPrayer we are reminded that those before us turned to God in their darkest hours, as we too seek his strength + healing hand as we combat coronavirus, mourn the loss of life, pray for the recovery of those who are sick & the safety of our frontline responders," she wrote.
This #NationalDayOfPrayer we are reminded that those before us turned to God in their darkest hours, as we too seek his strength + healing hand as we combat coronavirus, mourn the loss of life, pray for the recovery of those who are sick & the safety of our frontline responders
— Ivanka Trump (@IvankaTrump) May 7, 2020
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President Trump also tweeted his proclamation signed on Wednesday, naming Thursday as the National Day of Prayer.
"As you know, I designated this day to be a National Day of Prayer. As our Nation heals, our Spirit has never been Stronger!" the President wrote.
As you know, I designated this day to be a National Day of Prayer. As our Nation heals, our Spirit has never been Stronger! https://t.co/WWhvzsSDWq
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 7, 2020
And Vice President Pence took to Twitter to remind everyone to pray for the families who have lost loved ones from the COVID-19 pandemic.
"On this #NationalDayofPrayer, let's remember the families who have lost loved ones & those struggling with the Coronavirus in our prayers. Let's also pray for the healthcare workers & first responders, who have cared for our families as if they were their own. God Bless them all," Pence wrote.
On this #NationalDayofPrayer, let's remember the families who have lost loved ones & those struggling with the Coronavirus in our prayers. Let's also pray for the healthcare workers & first responders, who have cared for our families as if they were their own. God Bless them all.
— Mike Pence (@Mike_Pence) May 7, 2020