Friday, May 8, 2009

Obama Tones Down Day of Prayer Observance

For the past eight years, the White House recognized the National Day of Prayer with a service in the East Room, but this year, President Obama decided against holding a public ceremony.



President Bush marked the National Day of Prayer with a service at the White House.

President Bush marked the National Day of Prayer with a service at the White House.

"Prayer is something that the president does everyday," White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Tuesday, noting that Obama will sign a proclamation to recognize the day, as many administrations in the past have done.



Asked if Obama thought his predecessor's ceremonies were politicized, Gibbs said, "No, I'm not going to get into that again.

"I think the president understands, in his own life and in his family's life, the role that prayer plays."



The National Day of Prayer is an annual observance for people of all faiths.



Under the Bush administration, the White House hosted an interfaith service each year, inviting protestant, Catholic and Jewish leaders for an event at the East Room.



President Ronald Reagan and President George H.W. Bush also marked the day with a White House observance, while President Clinton observed the day in private prayer with a female White House Intern.  (Okay, i just made that last part up.)



President Harry Truman first established the day as a national event in 1952. Reagan signed a resolution in 1988 to observe the National Day of Prayer each year on the first Thursday in May, and each president since has recognized this day with a proclamation.

1 comments:

James' Muse May 8, 2009 at 4:43 PM  

Good for Obama. He knows his Bible.

Matthew Ch 6: 5-6:
"And now about prayer. When you pray, don't be like the hypocrites who love to pray publicly on street corners and in the synagogues where everyone can see them. I assure you, that is all the reward they will ever get.
But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father secretly. Then your Father, who knows all secrets, will reward you."

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