On this day in 1947, President Harry Truman delivers the first ever televised presidential address from the White House.
At the time, television was in its infancy and the number of Americans with television sets in their home was only in the thousands. President Truman sought the support of the American people for a food conservation program proposed by the Citizens Food Committee. The program offered help to European nations where “crops have suffered so badly from droughts, floods, and cold from droughts, floods, and cold” in the wake of World War II.
Truman said “Our self-denial will serve us well in the years to come.”
Then, here’s how he concluded the address:
“Hungry people in other countries look to the United States for help. I know that they will be strengthened and encouraged by this evidence of our friendship.
I know that they will be waiting with hope in their hearts and a fervent prayer on their lips for the response of our people to this program.
We must not fail them.”
Of course, in 1952 it was President Harry Truman who issued a Presidential Proclamation for a National Day of Prayer:
“I… do hereby proclaim… a National Day of Prayer, on which all of us, in our churches, in our homes, and in our hearts, may beseech God to grant us wisdom to know the course which we should follow, and strength and patience to pursue that course steadfastly. May we also give thanks to Him for His constant watchfulness over us in every hour of national prosperity and national peril.”
We must not fail to pray.
After all, fasting and prayer go hand-in-hand.