National Day of Prayer 2023

National Day of Prayer: Table of Contents

In the United States, the National Day of Prayer in 2023 is May 4.

This American tradition is actually older than America itself, dating back to the Second Continental Congress, before the Declaration of Independence.

Before America was born, it was already steeped in a tradition of prayer!

This tradition continues in modern America each year, with the president proclaiming the first Thursday in May as the National Day of Prayer.

Hallow is excited to recognize National Day of Prayer with actual words of prayer from holy men and women throughout the ages. Hear the voices of St. John Paul II, Padre Pio, Mother Teresa and others leading prayers.

Learn more about National Day of Prayer and how you can get involved below.

National Day of Prayer History

On June 12, 1775, the Second Continental Congress recognized the importance of prayer across the colonies, saying, “We may, with united hearts and voices, unfeignedly confess and deplore our many sins, and offer up our Joint supplications to the all- wise, omnipotent, and merciful Disposer of all events.”

One could argue that the National Day of Prayer is older than America itself!

Twenty-two years later, President John Adams further built on the tradition of a single day focused on prayer (and fasting):

“I have therefore thought fit to recommend, and I do hereby recommend, that Wednesday, the 9th day of May next, be observed throughout the United States as a day of solemn humiliation, fasting, and prayer.”

President Truman issued a proclamation in 1952 formally instituting National Day of Prayer, and it’s been an annual occurrence since. In 2022, President Biden encouraged Americans to find in our hearts and prayers the determination to put aside our differences, come together, and truly see one another as fellow Americans” in his proclamation.

National Day of Prayer in Different States

Prayer coordinators in each state help facilitate National Day of Prayer activities in local communities nationwide.

In addition to the national proclamations, each state recognizes the Day with its own proclamation.

And sometimes, that takes place on a different day than the official National day.

For example, New Jersey is recognizing the Day on Friday, May 5, 2023.

Prayer for 2023 National Day of Prayer

Here’s an excerpt from the lengthy official prayer published by the National Day of Prayer Task Force:

With grateful hearts we thank You fervently for the blessings in our life and throughout America; they are more than we are able to count. We will remember Your grace and testify to Your goodness in all generations. Help us to refrain from complaining, but instead be prompted to pray faithfully in every circumstance. Teach us to have a content heart knowing You are always enough for our every need.

As the Church we commit to pray and love our neighbor and nation as You loved us, that our reputation in this world would be rooted in Your love. Holy Spirit work and overflow through us in every prayer, thought, word, and deed. May our character, conversations, and conduct reflect the righteousness in which You clothed us and command us to live.

Pray With Hallow on National Day of Prayer

With the Day centered on being united in prayer, Hallow has invited several of our partners in inviting people around the country to pray together in our “Pray With Me” campaign. We also invite you to join us in praying today with deceased holy men and women from all ages in the new Original Voices collection on the app. 

The list of those to pray with includes:

  • St. John Paul II
    • Address to young people in 1987
  • Fr. Patrick Peyton
    • Sorrowful, Glorious, and Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary
    • Memorare
    • Short testimony about Mary, Our Mother
  • Ven. Fulton Sheen
  • St. Padre Pio
    • Angelus 
    • Spiritual Communion prayer
    • Rosary
  • St. Mother Teresa
    • Nobel Prize Speech in 1979
    • Prayer of St. Francis
  • Sr. Thea Bowman
    • Songs of My People spirituals album
  • St. Oscar Romero
    • 5 homilies 

Hear the actual voices of these inspirational figures of faith on Hallow. What better way to recognize National Day of Prayer in your own life?

Frequently Asked Questions about National Day of Prayer

What do you pray on National Day of Prayer?

The National Day of Prayer Task Force provides a prayer that one can choose to pray, but mostly, this is a personal decision to pray however one feels most comfortable.

What is the scripture for the National Day of Prayer 2023?

The scripture inspiring National Day of Prayer in 2023 is James 5:16, “Pray fervently in righteousness and avail much.”

When is National Day of Prayer?

The National Day of Prayer occurs on the first Thursday of May.

Who leads the National Day of Prayer?

There is a National Day of Prayer Task Force headquartered in Colorado, but volunteers help promote the Day in states across the country.

Pray Every Day With Hallow

Odds are that if you’re interested in National Day of Prayer, you’re probably not new to praying. 

Still, we all need a little encouragement sometime. Perhaps National Day of Prayer is the little nudge you needed to start carving out some time for prayer each Day.

Hallow makes it easy to find time for prayer each day and turn it into a habit.

More Prayer Resources

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