National Day of Prayer – Gerald Ford

National Day of Prayer – Gerald Ford

Gerald Ford prayer 2

Proclamation 4338 – National Day of Prayer, 1974
December 5, 1974
By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

Ours is a Nation built upon a belief in a Creator who has endowed all men with inalienable rights, and faith in that Creator permeates every aspect of our way of life.

With characteristically quiet eloquence, President Dwight D. Eisenhower once described the central role of religion in American life:

“Without God there could be no American form of government, nor an American way of life. Recognition of the Supreme Being is the first-the most basic-expression of Americanism. Thus the founding fathers of America saw it, and thus with God’s help, it will continue to be.”

Let us pray, each in our own way, for the strength and the will to meet the challenges that face us today with the same profound faith in God that inspired the Founders of this Nation.

Let us pray, as our Fathers prayed, for the wisdom to know God’s way and the determination to follow it.

Let us pray that God will continue to bless this great and good land as abundantly in the future as He has in the past.

.In 1952 the Congress directed the President to set aside a suitable day other than a Sunday each year as a National Day of Prayer, in recognition of the profound religious faith on which America is built.

Now, Therefore, I, Gerald R. Ford, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim Wednesday, December 18, as National Day of Prayer, 1974.

I call upon all Americans to pray that day, each after his or her own manner and convictions, for Deity’s blessing on our land and for peace on earth, goodwill among all men.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this fifth day of December, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred seventy-four, and of the Independence of the United States of America the one hundred ninety-ninth.

Proclamation 4375 – Prayer for Peace, Memorial Day, May 26, 1975
May 22, 1975

By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

At the height of the Civil War, President Lincoln proclaimed at a battlefield cemetery “that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain.” Shortly after that tragic war, a day was set aside each year to honor those who gave their lives.

Over 100 years have passed since that simple but moving ceremony at Gettysburg. There have been many Memorial Days, and many more Americans have died in defense of what we believe in. As Thomas Paine said, “Those who would reap the blessings of freedom must . . . undergo the fatigue of supporting it.” Today, because of the sacrifice and courage of American men and women, we are a free Nation at peace.

Let us dedicate ourselves today, and every day, to honoring those valiant Americans who died in service to their country. Let us gain strength from their sacrifice and devote ourselves to the peaceful pursuits which freedom allows and progress demands.

With faith in ourselves, future Memorial Days will find us still united in our purpose. Let us join together in working toward the greatest memorial we can construct for those who lay down their lives for us-a peace so durable that there will be no need for further sacrifices.

In recognition of those Americans to whom we pay tribute today, the Congress, by joint resolution of May 11, 1950 (64 Stat. 158), has requested that the President issue a Proclamation calling upon the people of the United States to observe each Memorial Day as a day of prayer for permanent peace and to designate a period during that day when the people of the United States might unite in prayer.

Now, Therefore, I, Gerald R. Ford, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate Memorial Day, Monday, May 26, 1975, as a day of prayer for permanent peace, and I designate the hour beginning in each locality at 11 o’clock in the morning of that day as a time to unite in prayer.

I urge all of America’s news media to assist in this observance.

I direct that the flag of the United States be flown at half-staff until noon on Memorial Day on all buildings, grounds, and naval vessels of the Federal Government throughout the United States and all areas under its jurisdiction and control.

I also call upon the Governors of the fifty States, the Governor of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and appropriate officials of all local units of government to direct that the flag be flown at half-staff on all public buildings during the customary forenoon period; and I request the people of the United States to display the flag at half-staff from their homes for the same period.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-second day of May, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred seventy-five, and of the Independence of the United States of America the one hundred ninety-ninth.

GERALD R. FORD

Proclamation 4379 – National Day of Prayer, 1975
June 12, 1975
By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

As we begin the celebration of our Bicentennial, it is fitting to recall that it was a profound faith in God which inspired the Founders of our Nation. Two hundred years ago, on June 12, 1775, the Second Continental Congress called upon the inhabitants of all the Colonies to unite, on a designated Thursday in July, in “humiliation, fasting, and prayer.” This was our first national day of prayer.

Americans on that day were asked to address their prayers to the “Great Governor of the World” to preserve their new Union and secure civil and religious liberties.

Those first prayers were answered in full measure. The Union survives. The liberties for which our forefathers prayed were never so secure as they are today. But material progress and human achievement often beckon mankind away from the spiritual virtues.

As we prepare to mark the 200th anniversary of the birth of our Nation, it is my fervent hope that Americans will not forget that it was prayer that helped to forge our freedoms and foster our liberties.

Let us now pray-as we have done throughout our history, and as the Congress has requested (66 Stat. 64)-for the wisdom to continue the American pilgrimage, striving toward a nobler existence for all humanity. Let us ask for the strength to meet the challenges that face our Nation. Let us give thanks to God for the many blessings granted to America throughout these two centuries. And let us express the hope that our lives may continue to be enriched by the grace of our Maker.

Now, Therefore, I, Gerald R. Ford, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim Thursday, July 24, 1975, as National Day of Prayer, 1975.

I call upon all Americans to pray that day, each after his or her own manner and convictions, for unity and the blessings of Freedom throughout our land and for peace on earth.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twelfth day of June, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred seventy-five, and of the Independence of the United States of America the one hundred ninety-ninth.

 

Remarks on Receiving a Collection of Day-of-Prayer Proclamations.
July 21, 1975
LET ME first welcome you, Mr. Stewart, and all of you representing different faiths and creeds and beliefs. I thank you very, very much for this collection, which will be a significant part of the White House memorabilia.

I didn’t realize until I talked to you and read some material on it, but there have been proclamations issued either by a congress or the Congress and by the President since June 12, 1775. I was delighted, of course, to issue the proclamation for July 24, 1975. The point that I think significant is the following: Our forefathers for almost 200 years have prayed, regardless of their beliefs or their faith, and this has helped them, and they are doing it today as they have in the past.

But equally significant, it has been the prayers of our forefathers, as it is the prayers of our fellow countrymen today, that have made America strong. And I am convinced, as we move ahead, individual prayer will help not only the person but the country, and prayer today means as much to Americans as it did on June 12, 1775.

And I thank you very, very much for this beautiful collection. This is a beautiful collection, and I thank you on behalf of the Presidency and thank you again, all the people who are here representing the various faiths in America.

Proclamation 4413 – National Day of Prayer for Americans Missing in Action in Southeast Asia
January 21, 1976

By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

Three years have passed since the signing of the Paris Agreement ending United States combat involvement in the Vietnam War.

That agreement contained specific provisions for the accounting of combatants designated as missing in action, and for the return of the remains of American war dead.

Despite this long passage of time, and despite the fact the war is now over, a satisfactory accounting still has not been completed. A cruel shadow of doubt hangs over hundreds of American families who have no knowledge of the whereabouts of their loved ones.

This Nation continues to explore every avenue of potential progress toward a resolution of this painful and frustrating situation. The recent Presidential visit to the People’s Republic of China brought forth some hope for progress in this matter. The efforts of a Select Committee of the Congress to account for missing persons also have met with some success.

As we continue these efforts, it is essential for the Nation to be always mindful of the plight of the men whose circumstances are unknown and of the families whose sorrow we know only too well.

Further, it is important that all of us recall that the watchful eye of our Creator is upon us and upon those we love. We take comfort in the fact that each of us, in our own way, may call upon our God for guidance, for solace, and for strength to endure.

It is thus fitting for the entire country to join in one voice to declare our unalter­able commitment to seek the fullest possible accounting for those lost in combat.

Now, Therefore, I, Gerald R. Ford, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate Sunday, January 25, 1976, as a National Day of Prayer for Americans Missing in Action in Southeast Asia.

I call upon all Americans and all churches throughout the Nation to mark this day with prayers for these brave men and for their families.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-first day of January, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred seventy-six, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundredth.

GERALD R. FORD

 

Proclamation 4422 – National Day of Prayer, 1976
March 16, 1976
By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

In this Bicentennial year, we will often reflect on the events of 200 yens ago. As we recall the crises of those early days, let us also reflect on the profound faith in God which inspired the founding fathers.

As the events of 1776 unfolded, our forebears knew they were on an uncertain course. On March 16 of that year, the Continental Congress, recognizing the “impending calamity and distress,” asked each colony “publicly to acknowledge the over-ruling Providence of God,” and urged the Colonists to observe a designated Friday in May as a day of “humiliation, fasting, and prayer.”

When later that year, the signers of the Declaration of Independence pledged to each other their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor, the pledge was made “with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence.”

In conformity with a Congressional request (66 Stat. 64), it is especially appro­priate this year that a day be set aside to reaffirm the commitment of our first citizens and draw on the “solemn sense of God’s superintending Providence” that sustained them during those troubled times.

Now, Therefore, I, Gerald R. Ford, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim Friday, May 14, 1976, as National Day of Prayer, 1976.

I call upon all Americans to pray that day, each in his or her own way, for the strength to meet the challenges of the future with the same courage and dedication Americans showed the world two centuries ago.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this sixteenth day of March, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred seventy-six, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundredth.

 

Proclamation 4440 – Prayer for Peace Memorial Day, May 31, 1976
May 19, 1976

 

By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

In this, our Nation’s 200th year, Memorial Day has special significance. As we honor those who gave their lives that our experiment with liberty might succeed, we can be proud of what America has accomplished. We are-at peace. Our Nation and our way of life endure. The sacrifices of 200 years have preserved both individual freedom and national unity.

As we mark this milestone of our national independence, however, we must not forget the lessons of history. Other nations have risen to great heights only to weaken in their resolve. We must not repeat their error. We must remain strong in our defense and steadfast in our resolve to uphold the principles with which we began two centuries ago.

In accord with the request of the Congress, by joint resolution of May 11, 1950 (64 Stat. 158), let us especially pray on Memorial Day that our continued resolve and our eternal vigilance will bring lasting peace to peoples yearning for peace, and that our honored dead shall not have died in vain.

Now, Therefore, I, Gerald R. Ford, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate Memorial Day, Monday, May 31, 1976, as a day of prayer for permanent peace, and I designate the hour beginning in each locality at 11 o’clock in the morning of that day as a time to unite in prayer.

I urge the press, radio, television, and all other information media to join in this observance.

I also call upon the appropriate officials of all levels of government to fly the flag at half-staff until noon during Memorial Day on all buildings, grounds, and naval vessels throughout the United States and in all areas under its jurisdiction and control, and I request the people of the United States to display the flag at half-staff from their homes for the same customary forenoon period.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this nineteenth day of May, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred seventy-six, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundredth.

GERALD R. FORD

 

 

National Day of Prayer

 

 

Prayer Breakfasts – Gerald Ford

blessing 4

 

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