Here, you can read the proclamation and the prayer for peace rendered by the President of the United States of America on Memorial Day's Eve, last year.
"For more than two centuries, Americans have been called to defend
the founding ideals of our democracy. On Memorial Day, a grateful Nation
remembers the proud patriots who made the ultimate sacrifice in defense
of liberty's blessings.
From the opening battles of the American Revolution through the turmoil
of the Civil War, to World War I, World War II, Korea, and Vietnam, to
the Persian Gulf and today's operations in the war on terror in
Afghanistan, Iraq, and around the world, the members of our military
have built a tradition of honorable and faithful service. As we observe
Memorial Day, we remember the more than one million Americans who have
died to preserve our freedom, the more than 140,000 citizens who were
prisoners of war, and all those who were declared missing in action.
We also honor our veterans for their dedication to America and their
sacrifice. This year, we honor many heroes by observing the 60th
anniversary of D-Day on the beaches of Normandy, and by dedicating the
National World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C. In a radio address on
June 6, 1944, President Franklin Roosevelt described these service
members as the "pride of our Nation," who struggled to
preserve our civilization. The fallen from that fateful day and that war
will always be remembered. They hold a cherished place in the history of
the United States and in the memories of the people they liberated.
Today, all who wear the uniform of the United States are serving at a
crucial hour in history, and each has answered a great call to serve our
Nation on the front lines of freedom. As we continue to fight terrorism
and promote peace and freedom-, let us pray for the safety and strength
of our troops, for God's blessing on them and their families, and for
those who have lost loved ones. On this Memorial Day, we honor all of
our fallen soldiers, their commitment to our country, and their legacy
of patriotism and sacrifice. By giving their lives in the cause of
freedom, these heroes have protected and inspired all Americans.
In respect for their devotion to America, the Congress, by a joint
resolution approved on May 11, 1950, as amended (64 Stat. 158), has
requested the President to issue a proclamation calling on the people of
the United States to observe each Memorial Day as a day of prayer for
permanent peace and designating a period on that day when the people of
the United States might unite in prayer. The Congress, by Public Law
106-579, has also designated the minute beginning at 3:00 p.m. local
time on that day as a time for all Americans to observe the National
Moment of Remembrance.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of
America, do hereby proclaim Memorial Day, May 31, 2004, as a day of
prayer for permanent peace, and I designate the hour beginning in each
locality at 11:00 a.m. of that day as a time to unite in prayer. I also
ask all Americans to observe the National Moment of Remembrance
beginning at 3:00 p.m. local time on Memorial Day. I urge the press,
radio, television, and all other media to participate in these
I also request the Governors of the United States and the Commonwealth
of Puerto Rico, and the appropriate officials of all units of
government, to direct that the flag be flown at half-staff until noon on
this Memorial Day on all buildings, grounds, and naval vessels
throughout the United States, and in all areas under its jurisdiction
and control. I also request the people of the United States to display
the flag at half-staff from their homes for the customary forenoon
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-sixth day
of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand four, and of the
Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and
GEORGE W. BUSH"