In honor of the United States National Day of Prayer on Thursday, May 6, President Russell M. Nelson and three members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles posted thoughts on Twitter about the importance of prayer.
“Sometimes it may feel as though some of our most fervent prayers go unanswered,” President Nelson tweeted. “I know that feeling! But I also know that our prayers are heard. And our faith is strengthened by prayer.
“Our Heavenly Father can see things we can’t see. While we see mortal problems and pain, He sees our immortal potential and progress. If we pray to know His will, He will guide and help us along the way.”
Reiterating his continued plea to pray for one’s country and leaders, President M. Russell Ballard, Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, wrote on Twitter: “No matter how you pray or to whom you pray, please exercise your faith — whatever your faith may be — and pray for your country and for your national leaders.
“There is nothing more important right now than the people of all nations praying for divine inspiration and guidance.”
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles echoed the Savior’s admonition to “watch and pray always” (3 Nephi 18:15). He encouraged his Twitter followers to “be strong, be believing and keep praying.”
“Prayers are often heard and answered in the most unexpected hour,” he wrote.
Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught that communication from God comes in different ways at different times. “There’s no one form of revelation or inspiration,” he wrote. “God uses a great variety to reach us, whatever He feels is best. And it’s all valid.”
For almost 70 years, the United States has held an annual day of prayer.
According to an Associated Press report, President Harry S. Truman signed a Congressional resolution calling for an annual National Day of Prayer in April 1952 as U.S. soldiers were fighting in Korea. The purpose was for the public to gather in houses of worship to pray for world peace. The first Thursday in May has been designated as the National Day of Prayer since 1988.
Last year, Debbie Marriott Harrison, a member of the Church’s Public Affairs Advisory Council in Washington, D.C. and global cultural ambassador at Marriott International, represented the Church at the annual National Day of Prayer service held in the Rose Garden at the White House. She was one of the seven faith representatives invited to offer a prayer. COVID-19 restrictions limited the number of attendees and participants.
In 2019, Primary General President Joy D. Jones attended the White House event and offered a prayer. She prayed, “Father, in these times of heightened complexities and opportunities, we plead for Thy continued guidance and forbearance. We commit to love with more righteousness, and to live with greater moral rectitude.”
When Relief Society General President Jean B. Bingham attended the event in 2018, she asked Heavenly Father to help the United States become “a land of Good Samaritans.”