Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) (Photo by Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images)
On May 2, 2019 Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) issued a statement on the 2019 National Day of Prayer, stating that “There will always be an abiding need for unified public prayer by Americans.”
“Today we celebrate the National Day of Prayer,” said Rep. Louie Gohmert in a Press Release statement. “This significant day was designated by the United States Congress in 1952 by a joint resolution. Today Christians all over the country are urged to turn to God in prayer and fervent meditation.
“Throughout the history of this nation, prayer has played a meaningful role,” Rep. Gohmert continued. “In fact, the first call to prayer was in 1775 when the Continental Congress asked the colonies to pray for wisdom in forming a nation. This country’s founding fathers sought after the wisdom of God when faced with serious decisions, and today this practice should also be very important. It is God’s guidance and provision that safely steers our vessels to their safe harbor. There will always be an abiding need for unified public prayer by Americans for our guidance, for wisdom, and for his loving, protective, unseen hand of protection.”
The National Day of Prayer, as noted on the National Day of Prayer website, began when “a bill initiated by Mr. Conrad Hilton of Hilton Hotels and Senator Frank Carlson of Kansas “was passed (Public Law 82-324) that the [p]resident of the United States was to set aside an appropriate day each year, other than Sunday, as a National Day of Prayer.”
Later, in 1987, Republican Senator Strom Thurmond wrote a bill (S.1378), which would amend public law 82-324. The bill went on to pass unanimously in the Senate and a few days later in the House, and on Thursday, May 8, 1988, “Ronald Reagan sign[ed] into law Public Law 100-307 the designation of the first Thursday in May as the annual observance for the National Day of Prayer.”
Congressman Gohmert included Scripture in his statement on the National Day of Prayer:
“I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.” – 1 Timothy 2:1-4
Continuing on in his statement, Rep. Gohmert stated, “It is both my hope and my prayer that today we will look past our differences, and truly come together as citizens from all backgrounds to humbly and earnestly pray for our beloved nation. For all who sense that there is a God, may we set aside time, not just today but routinely, to prayerfully beseech our Heavenly Father for his direction.
“We should pray as did George Washington, that God would ‘dispose us all to do justice, to love mercy, and to demean ourselves with charity, humility and pacific temper of mind, which were the characteristics of the Divine Author of our blessed religion, and without an humble imitation of whose example in these things, we can never hope to be a happy nation.,’” said Rep. Gohmert.
Trump defends clinicians’ right to refuse to do abortions
The Trump administration on Thursday moved to protect the rights of clinicians who object to participating in abortions with a regulation intended to safeguard those with religious and moral objections.
President Donald Trump made the announcement during a speech in the White House Rose Garden to mark the National Day of Prayer.
“Just today we finalized new protections of conscience rights for physicians, pharmacists, nurses, teachers, students and faith-based charities,” Trump said. “They’ve been wanting to do that for a long time.”
The conscience rule was a priority for religious conservatives who are a key part of Trump’s political base, but some critics fear it will become a pretext for denying medical care to LGBT people.
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, the rule requires hospitals, universities, clinics and other institutions that receive funding from federal programs such as Medicare and Medicaid to certify that they comply with some 25 federal laws protecting conscience and religious rights.
Most of these laws and provisions address medical procedures such as abortion, sterilization and assisted suicide.
Clinicians and institutions would not have to provide, participate in, pay for, cover or make referrals for procedures they object to on moral or religious grounds, HHS said. The rule also addresses conscience protections involving so-called advance directives that detail a patient’s wishes for care at the end of life.
Asserting that previous administrations have not done enough to protect conscience rights in the medical field, HHS under Trump created a new division within its Office for Civil Rights to investigate complaints.
HHS said last year the office received more than 1,300 complaints alleging discrimination in a health care setting on account of religious beliefs or conscience issues. There was only a trickle of such complaints previously, officials said, about one per year.
The National Women’s Law Center, which advocates for abortion rights, said in a statement that the regulation will allow “anyone from a doctor to a receptionist to entities like hospitals and pharmacies to deny a patient critical — and sometimes lifesaving — care.”
“Personal beliefs should never determine the care a patient receives,” it said.
National Right to Life, an organization that opposes abortion, praised Trump’s action.
Associated Press writer David Crary in New York contributed.
Trump marks National Day of Prayer with synagogue victims
President Donald Trump has celebrated the National Day of Prayer with victims of last weekend’s California synagogue shooting.
Trump and rabbi Yisroel Goldstein of the Chabad of Poway synagogue spoke by telephone after Saturday’s shooting. Goldstein told celebrants during a ceremony Wednesday in the White House Rose Garden that Trump was the first person “who began my healing.”
Goldstein thanked Trump for being, “as they say in Yiddish, a mensch par excellence.” Mensch is Yiddish for a “person of integrity and honor.” Trump said Goldstein is an “incredible man.”
Two other victims of the shooting, including an off-duty Border Patrol agent who fired at the alleged gunman, attended the ceremony.
One woman was killed and three others were injured in the shooting, including the rabbi, who lost a finger.
Trumps, Pences participate in National Day of Prayer at White House