Friday, May 02, 2008

President Bush Celebrates National Day of Prayer

Just in case you missed this news item . . .

From "President Bush Celebrates National Day of Prayer" posted at 5/1/08 with video also

THE PRESIDENT: Good morning. Welcome to the White House. And I am honored to join you for the National Day of Prayer.

. . . On this day, Americans come together to thank our Creator for our nation's many blessings. We are a blessed nation. And on this day, we celebrate our freedoms, particularly the freedom to pray in public and the great diversity of faith found in America. I love being the President of a country where people feel free to worship as they see fit. And I remind our fellow citizens, if you choose to worship or not worship, and no matter how you worship, we're all equally American. (Applause.)

I think one of the interesting things about a National Day of Prayer is it does help describe our nation's character to others. We are a prayerful nation. A lot of citizens draw comfort from prayer. Prayer is an important part of the lives of millions of Americans. And it's interesting, when you think about our faith you can find it in the Pledge of Allegiance, you can find an expression of American faith in the Declaration of Independence, and you can find it in the coins in our pockets. I used to carry coins -- (laughter) -- in about 10 months I'll be carrying them again. (Laughter and applause.)

The fidelity to faith has been present in our nation's leaders from its very start. Upon assuming the presidency, George Washington took the oath of office and then added the famous plea, "So help me God." On John Adams's first day in the White House, he wrote a prayer that is now etched in marble on the fireplace in the State Dining Room, and he prayed, "May none but honest and wise men ever rule under this roof." Now we'll leave it to the historians to judge whether or not that happened throughout our history. (Laughter.)

During the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln turned to prayer. His second Inaugural Address quoted from Scripture. He stood before the United States people and quoted from Scripture. And he sought to heal a people who "read the same Bible and prayed to the same God" -- his words.

To read the all of the speech, and for a link to the video of the event, CLICK HERE.