John F. Kennedy photo

Proclamation 3536—Prayer for Peace, Memorial Day, 1963

April 26, 1963

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

Whereas Memorial Day provides a fitting occasion for the American people to pause and realize that our Nation has survived recurring crises which have tried the souls of men; and

Whereas we recognize that the maintenance of our freedom has required constant vigilance, unified strength, and the willingness of our people to make all necessary sacrifices; and

Whereas we are accustomed to join together on Memorial Day each year in grateful tribute to our forebears and to our fellow citizens who have given their lives on the field of battle; and

Whereas in memory of their sacrifices in this noble cause we should keep faith with our heroic dead by humbly and devoutly supplicating Almighty God for guidance in our efforts to achieve a peaceful world; and

Whereas to this end the Congress, in a joint resolution approved May 11, 1950 (64 Stat. 158), requested the President to issue a proclamation calling upon the people of the United States to observe each Memorial Day as a day of prayer for permanent peace:

Now, Therefore, I, John F. Kennedy, President of the United States, do hereby proclaim Memorial Day, Thursday, May 30, 1963, as a day of prayer for lasting peace, and I urge all citizens on that day to invoke God's blessing on those who have died in defense of our country and to pray for a world of freedom with peace and justice. I designate the hour beginning in each locality at eleven o'clock in the morning of that day as the time to unite in such prayer.

I also urge the press, radio, television, and all other media of information to cooperate in this observance.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States of America to be affixed.

DONE at the City of Washington this twenty-sixth day of April in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and sixty-three, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the one hundred and eighty-seventh.

Signature of John F. Kennedy


By the President:


Secretary of State

John F. Kennedy, Proclamation 3536—Prayer for Peace, Memorial Day, 1963 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

Simple Search of Our Archives