Originally published at: http://blog.salvationarmyusa.org/2013/05/01/join-us-for-national-day-of-prayer/

“Prayer brings communities together and can be a wellspring of strength and support. In the aftermath of senseless acts of violence, the prayers of countless Americans signal to grieving families and a suffering community that they are not alone. Their pain is a shared pain, and their hope a shared hope.”

President Obama made this statement earlier today in his official proclamation of the National Day of Prayer, an annual observance on the first Thursday of May providing an opportunity for people of all faiths to join in prayer for the nation.

The 2013 theme is “Pray for America” based on Matthew 12:21, which reminds us that “In His name the nations will put their hope.

Threaded throughout the Old and New Testaments is this theme of hope, and the act of looking forward to good outcomes with desire and confidence stemming from faith in God’s promises and providence. Hope is the light we see at the end of a dark tunnel.

At this time, there are many families and communities around the world enduring loss and despair as a result of recent natural and man-made disasters. As we reflect on these events, our hope is that you will join us on Thursday, May 2 as we pray for the following:

  • For the West, Texas community as they recover and rebuild after the recent plant explosion.
  • For the Boston community as they heal emotionally and physically from the recent terrorist attack, and give thanks for the first responders and emergency personnel involved.
  • For the Sichuan Province of China where thousands were injured and many left homeless from the devastating earthquake of April 20.
  • For families who lost a loved one in Bangladesh following the building collapse in Savar.
  • 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 give thanks for the many selfless volunteers who enable The Salvation Army’s services coast-to-coast, especially in times of disaster when volunteers play a crucial role in response efforts.

What will you pray for? Tell us on Facebook (SalvationArmyUSA) or on Twitter (@SalvationArmyUS).

Learn more about The Salvation Army’s Disaster Relief Services or click here to show your support.