Examples of Presidential Thanksgiving Proclamations

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President Franklin D. Roosevelt, 1936 Thanksgiving Proclamation
"Coupled with our grateful acknowledgment of the blessings it has been our high privilege to enjoy, we have a deepening sense of solemn responsibility to assure for ourselves and our descendents a future more abundant in faith and security. 

"Let us, therefore, on the day appointed, each in his own way, but together as a whole people, make due expression of our thanksgiving and humbly endeavor to follow in the footsteps of Almighty God." 

President John F. Kennedy, 1963 Thanksgiving Proclamation
"On that day let us gather in sanctuaries dedicated to worship and in homes blessed by family affection to express our gratitude for the glorious gifts of God; and let us earnestly and humbly pray that He will continue to guide and sustain us in the great unfinished tasks of achieving peace, justice, and understanding among all men and nations and of ending misery and suffering wherever they exist." 

President Ronald Reagan, 1985 Thanksgiving Proclamation
"Although the time and date of the first American thanksgiving observance may be uncertain, there is no question but that this treasured custom derives from our Judeo-Christian heritage. 'Unto Thee, O God, do we give thanks,' the Psalmist sang, praising God not only for the 'wondrous works' of His creation, but for loving guidance and deliverance from dangers....Let us thank God for our families, friends, and neighbors, and for the joy of this very festival we celebrate in His name." 

President Bill Clinton, 1996 Thanksgiving Proclamation
"Let us now, this Thanksgiving Day, reawaken ourselves and our neighbors and our communities to the genius of our founders in daring to build the world's first constitutional democracy on the foundation of trust and thanks to God. Out of our right and proper rejoicing on Thanksgiving Day, let us give our own thanks to God and reaffirm our love of family, neighbor, and community. Each of us can be an instrument of blessing to those we touch this Thanksgiving Day — and every day of the year." 

President George W. Bush, 2001 Thanksgiving Proclamation
"As we recover from the terrible tragedies of September 11, Americans of every belief and heritage give thanks to God for the many blessings we enjoy as a free, faithful, and fair-minded land. Let us particularly give thanks for the self-less sacrifices of those who responded in service to others after the terrorist attacks, setting aside their own safety as they reached out to help their neighbors. Let us also give thanks for our leaders at every level who have planned and coordinated the myriad of responses needed to address this unprecedented national crisis.  And let us give thanks for the millions of people of faith who have opened their hearts to those in need with love and prayer, bringing us a deeper unity and stronger resolve." 

President Barack Obama, 2014 Thanksgiving Proclamation
"With God's grace, this holiday season we carry forward the legacy of our forebears. In the company of our loved ones, we give thanks for the people we care about and the joy we share, and we remember those who are less fortunate. At shelters and soup kitchens, Americans give meaning to the simple truth that binds us together:  we are our brother's and our sister's keepers.  We remember how a determined people set out for a better world -- how through faith and the charity of others, they forged a new life built on freedom and opportunity."


For a complete list of Presidential Thanksgiving Proclamations, visit http://www.pilgrimhallmuseum.org/thanksgiving_proclamations.htm.