Each year on May 7th, the National Day of Prayer is celebrated by millions of Americans.
This event gathered annual steam thanks in part to the support of President George W. Bush, who held a formal White House event each year during his presidency. This year, President Barack Obama will not continue this tradition. I think that this is an unfortunate decision by Obama. Millions of Americans pray and believe in its power to change and transform lives. And, many would like to see the President of the United States take the lead.
But prayer is more than just an annual event. Prayer strikes close to home for many Americans. Its always been that way.
On April 30, 1863, at the apex of the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln established a Day of National Humiliation, Fasting and Prayer. See his proclamation here
On March 3, 1801, President Thomas Jefferson penned this prayer .
These American presidents had a deep value of prayer. They saw its value to their countrymen and their nation. Apparently, Obama does not share this view. Neither did Bill Clinton. Obama and Clinton would do well taking a page from our founders who valued the importance of prayer and value of publicly leading the nation in this endeavor.