President Obama's faithy Thanksgiving proclamation
November 25th, 2010
08:42 AM ET

President Obama's faithy Thanksgiving proclamation

This year's Thanksgiving Day proclamation from the White House has a distinctly religious ring to it, referring to the "gifts of a gracious God" to the nation.

"A beloved American tradition, Thanksgiving Day offers us the opportunity to focus our thoughts on the grace that has been extended to our people and our country," President Barack Obama's Thanksgiving proclamation begins."...We also pause our normal pursuits on this day and join in a spirit of fellowship and gratitude for the year's bounties and blessings."

At a time when Obama has been criticized by some conservatives who say he has not been firm enough in espousing American exceptionalism, the statement includes repeated mentions of a relationship between God and America.

"Thanksgiving Day is a time each year, dating back to our founding, when we lay aside the troubles and disagreements of the day and bow our heads in humble recognition of the providence bestowed upon our Nation," the proclamation, issued Tuesday, says.

In other places, the proclamation frames Thanksgiving as a time for the nation to count its blessings amid hard times.

"In the dark days of the Civil War when the fate of our Union was in doubt, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a Thanksgiving Day, calling for 'the Almighty hand' to heal and restore our Nation," it says.

"As we stand at the close of one year and look to the promise of the next," it continues, "we lift up our hearts in gratitude to God for our many blessings, for one another, and for our Nation."

Last year, Obama's White House proclamation wasn't nearly so religious, its sole reference to God contained in a quote from George Washington.

This year's Thanksgiving proclamation reads more like those from President George W. Bush, whose 2008 statement on the holiday said that the nation's "blessings, and life itself, come not from the hand of man but from Almighty God."

Is Obama's more religious statement this year a reflection of current hard times for the White House and the nation, a response to surveys showing that most Americans are confused about the president's religion, or do you think there some other explanation?

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Barack Obama • Holidays • Politics • Thanksgiving

soundoff (299 Responses)
  1. Новости и обзоры из мира софта, игр, железа и высоких технологий, it

    I've read a few just right stuff here. Definitely value bookmarking for revisiting. I wonder how so much attempt you put to make such a magnificent informative website.

    April 19, 2013 at 11:01 pm |
  2. Emira

    19f@jackjohnsonsonson You don't know anything you dumb fool. The Health care bill Obama, your bbaies momma has pushed through will raise taxes and now since it has past and you think ur rescued , only now comes the talk of a national tax,and higher taxes Look educate your self, or ask you parents to use condoms for the next child they plan for the sake of this country.

    May 20, 2012 at 1:26 am |
  3. Aneriroseann

    purchase coach bags clearance online

    February 3, 2012 at 12:45 pm |
  4. Emoksboma

    Добрый вечер
    У Вас очень хороший сайт
    Думаю о покупке ссылки на этом портале.

    Наверху и можно слева в сообщениях. Ну или каких-либо других вкусных рекламных мест.
    Возможно по тематика вашей странички подойдёт для рекламы сайта
    для этого проекта могу заказать более дорогие статьи и обзоры.
    Поясните, как вы работаете?
    Хотелось бы постоянно заказывать статьи, и др. надеюсь эти сайты подойдут для ваших посетителей.
    Я покупал рекламу на разных сайтаx всего за 2800 руб. в квартал.
    Пожалуйста ответьте здесь, напишите вашу цену. Нужно для отчёта

    April 14, 2011 at 7:36 am |
  5. Diane Pearce Votes for Obama Again

    Just wanted to say that I work at a large Pharmaceutical company in Clayton NC and I endroce Barack Obama with all my being. I encourage all my friends and colleagues to say yes for Obama in 2012!! I LOVE YOU OBAMA

    March 24, 2011 at 8:52 pm |
  6. Muneef

    Mashallah the sisters love for the prophet is an example to follow.
    May be its time we ask our selves do we really love the prophet as we claim to?

    Kenyan Flight Attendant found Islam


    December 1, 2010 at 6:56 am |
  7. truth

    @David Johnson and @Bob

    My faith in Christ will not change no matter what you guys say..... All I know is that one day....those who rejected Him will confess that Christ is the real God..... You keep asking how do we know my God is the real God...my answer to you.... You ask Him to come into your heart and find out.... never wanted to post anything, but I did.... I pray that every night before you go to bed...let the thought of Christ RULE OVER YOUR MIND!! You don't have what I got and that is the presence of God and He who is in me is greater that He who is in this world" You can write what ever you like, but you can't have the peace that my God has given me and that is CHRIST.....Also, The blood of Jesus is powerful so be careful with what you say.....

    November 30, 2010 at 11:06 pm |
  8. Muneef

    The Messenger of Allâh [pbuh] was carried in body from the Sacred Mosque in Makkah to the Distant Mosque in Jerusalem on a horse called Al-Buraq in the company of Gabriel, the archangel.


    November 30, 2010 at 8:26 pm |
  9. Muneef"786"

    Take history as an example through which we can learn more about mankind in life and on earth...

    Dura-Europos: Crossroad of Cultures August 11, 2010 by Carly Silver
    A Combination of Cultures


    November 28, 2010 at 4:01 pm |
  10. Muneef"786"

    Happy thanks givings to all of you and the USA the State of the World and pray to God to guide all to the straight path..amen.

    November 26, 2010 at 12:31 pm |
    • Muneef"786"

      In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful (1)
      Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, (2) The Beneficent, the Merciful. (3) Owner of the Day of Judgment, (4) Thee (alone) we worship; Thee (alone) we ask for help. (5) Show us the straight path, (6) The path of those whom Thou hast favoured. Not (the path) of those who earn Thine anger nor of those who go astray. (7). Amen.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:39 pm |
  11. truth

    @David Johnson-- You asked how do one know Christ is the real one??? In my opinion.... if you want to know If Christ is real, you have to find that out on yourself-- The road map to our life is Bible!! it's interesting we are all sitting here and judging one another--However, Our God is a merciful God-No matter what God loves us and our nation, but He doesn't love the sin in our lives- If you read the bible it explains why certain things are happening in this world--It's a book that will change your life.... before going to bed- say a prayer for this nation and the President--

    November 26, 2010 at 11:17 am |
    • David Johnson

      You said: " if you want to know If Christ is real, you have to find that out on yourself– The road map to our life is Bible!!"

      Hmm...But the Muslims don't think Christ is the Messiah or the Son of God. Their Holy Book says Jesus is a prophet who will one day return and tell everyone to obey Muhammad.

      The Jews don't think Jesus is the Messiah or the Son of God either. They think he was an ordinary Jewish man and preacher living during the Roman occupation of the Holy Land in the first century C.E..

      How do you know your bible, especially the New Testament, is true? How do you know you aren't following a false map?
      How do you know your god is the true god? How do you know your bible is the word of that god?

      Curious in Arizona

      it's interesting we are all sitting here and judging one another–However, Our God is a merciful God-No matter what God loves us and our nation, but He doesn't love the sin in our lives- If you read the bible it explains why certain things are happening in this world–It's a book that will change your life.... before going to bed- say a prayer for this nation and the President–

      November 26, 2010 at 3:19 pm |
  12. Dragoneer

    CNN, you should ban hypocrites. They shouldn't be allowed to leave their comments here as long as your moderations are not violating their freedom of speech. Hypocrites who support anti-bully should not be allowed to leave bullying comments against our President of America. They shall rot in hell just for being hypocrites.

    November 26, 2010 at 7:27 am |
    • Dragoneer

      And before any one of you jump the gun... I was once a Christian and I don't believe in hell. And I don't even believe that Jesus is our savior. I'm a converted Jew and I'm proud of it. Christian is no different than Jehovah's Witness. The BIBLE is the one that brainwashes the ALL of you. Oh and hell yeah, I still eat pork!

      November 26, 2010 at 7:40 am |
  13. Dragoneer

    90% of you who are anti-bully are bullying Obama. Why? Because you're hypocrites and low-life retards. Nuff said.

    November 26, 2010 at 7:13 am |
  14. Dragoneer

    I love you, Barack Obama.

    November 26, 2010 at 7:07 am |
  15. Jason from Toronto Poets

    I'm kind of expecting to be persecuted especially because I'm a foreigner, but so be it if that happens....I'm not taking sides just asking a question of everyone....I love your nation's great passion in its diversity of beliefs. Here we have a GTA Faith Summit (Greater Toronto Area) where people of all faiths and atheists gather to express their beliefs on the same talk show panel peacefully....for the 3rd year Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists AND atheists will be invited to gather together and express their views to one another...do you guys do this in some U.S. cities and is it open to atheists and Christians and still peaceful?...lol....When I searched online I found some emergency summits as a result of hatred against Muslims etc. Do the Christians commenting believe you can be a passionate Christian and still express love to atheists and do the atheists believe they can be a passionate atheist and express love to Christians? I see some Christians expressing hate towards atheists and some atheists expressing hate towards Christians?...I realize this could be a vocal minority in both groups and if that's the case then I guess its not a trend to be paid attention to???...or is it just online because I haven't noticed this when I've traveled in the States, but I haven't spent enough time to know....?

    November 26, 2010 at 5:28 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Oy! Fellow Torontonian! Are you going to see the Tony Blair / Christopher Hitchens debate this weekend about whether religion is force for good or evil?

      November 26, 2010 at 3:45 pm |
  16. John Christian

    I'm glad Obama issued a religious proclamation this year. I'd be happy if it was even explicitly Christian.

    At the same time, as a Christian American, I'm glad Obama has not embraced the heresy of "American exceptionalism." From the perspective of Christian belief and doctrine, there is absolutely no basis to the theory that America is somehow essentially different from other nations or that America is supposed to rule the world or does not have to abide by the laws that other countries have to abide by. That theory is totally b-s- and is quite literally heretical, if it be proposed as some sort of theory of Christianity.

    November 26, 2010 at 3:19 am |
  17. DJ MCFLY


    November 26, 2010 at 2:52 am |
  18. hf

    of course the bad mouthing anti-religion trash is out today I see,

    at it as usual ......................... if you don't have something nice to say, close it

    or suck obama's clock, at the Chicago Men's Club for gays

    November 26, 2010 at 2:37 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Your post makes perfect sense!
      Becuase atheists don't share the Christian fear and loathing of hom-ose-xuality, they wind up in close proximity to "those types" and catch The G-ay. Same se-x attraction is an airborne virus, isn't it? I mean, why else would I wear a bio-hazard suit when I take my wife to see figure skating competi-tions?

      November 26, 2010 at 3:42 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.