President Biden on Wednesday issued a National Day of Prayer proclamation that touted the “power of prayer” and invited Americans to “give thanks,” although the proclamation’s absence of the word “God” sparked criticism and marked the first time that’s happened in modern history.
By a 1952 law, every U.S. president must issue a proclamation designating a National Day of Prayer. This year the day fell on May 6.
“Today, we remember and celebrate the role that the healing balm of prayer can play in our lives and in the life of our Nation,” the proclamation reads. “As we continue to confront the crises and challenges of our time – from a deadly pandemic, to the loss of lives and livelihoods in its wake, to a reckoning on racial justice, to the existential threat of climate change – Americans of faith can call upon the power of prayer to provide hope and uplift us for the work ahead.”