May 3rd is National Day of Prayer

In 1952, President Truman signed a bill proclaiming the first Thursday in May to be the National Day of Prayer, a day of public thanksgiving and prayer for the nation.

As such, this Thursday, May 3 marks the 61st annual observance of the day on which all people are invited to pray. The 2012 theme is “One Nation Under God” based on Psalm 33:12, “Blessed is the nation whose God is Lord.”

Famous theologian, John Calvin, once said, “Prayer must not be self-centered. It must arise not only because we feel our own need as a burden we must lay upon God, but also because we are so bound up in love for our fellow men that we feel their need as acutely as our own. To make intercession for men is the most powerful and practical way in which we can express our love for them.”

The National Day of Prayer serves as a reminder for Americans to recall God’s wisdom and to seek His guidance during troubled times. Approximately two million Americans will take part in this observance on Thursday. We hope you’ll join us in this opportunity to cast our cares on the Lord.

Here are a few prayers that we’re sending up:

  • With 12.7 million Americans currently unemployed, we pray for the families and individuals who are jobless and struggling with finances; that they might find the temporary care they need as well as the long-term solutions and employment that will better their lives and end their woes.
  • We pray for our leaders that God may guide them in wisdom that peace and justice may abound.
  • We pray for our nation’s young people that they follow God throughout their lives and grow in love for Him and serve others in His name.
  • We pray for the ill, the weak, the homebound, the destitute, the lonely, the brokenhearted and that they may all be comforted by God’s presence and restored in body, mind and soul.
  • We pray for effective drug and alcohol rehabilitation of the men and women of The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Centers.
  • We pray for the end of slavery and for the discovery and restoration of human trafficking victims.
  • We pray for all Americans, that they might turn their lives towards God and serve others in His name.

What will you be praying for? Let us know in the comments section below.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (Phil. 4:6-7 NKJV)


The Salvation Army’s mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination. To learn more, please visit our website at