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Author of all good!
We implore Thy almighty protection
on behalf of the American Republic of the North.
Let Thine eyes, which never slumber, be open upon her,
that she may not be erased from among the family of nations.
Be with her in this struggle for life,
that she may survive it, and wax greater and happier.
Speak to the hearts of her disaffected children,
and let them again throb with undying affection.
Let both the weapon of aggression
and that of defense
be buried into the bottomless ocean,
and cast Thou with it the spirit of acrimony
that has sharpened its edge.
Direct the hands into which
the temporal welfare of this people is entrusted.
Sustain them that their strength may never flag.
Bless the President of the United States:
bless him for his sterling honesty.
Bless him for his firmness and moderation.
Rekindle with joy his domestic heart;
pour on him the balm of divine consolation.
Grant that the issues of his momentous obligations
be a united and prosperous country.
Grant that the end of his career
be the maintenance of this Government,
unimpaired and unsullied
as bequeathed by our illustrious ancestors.
So may it be.
This prayer by Rabbi Sabato Morais (1828-1897), of Congregation Mikveh Israel in Philadelphia, was initially delivered on 15 April 1862 (the first day of Passover) at the conclusion of a sermon later printed in The Philadelphia Inquirer on 23 April 1862. A copy of that sermon was preserved in the Sabato Morais Ledger (p. 22, clip no. 23). (The prayer was also read by President Abraham Lincoln, who sent Rabbi Morais an acknowledgment). The letter was read into the congressional record on 29 February 1944 by Arthur G. Klein (1904-1968, D-NY) after it was brought to light by Moshe Davis at the 44th annual meeting of the American Jewish Historical Society on 12-13 February 1944 (Lincoln’s Birthday).
“Prayer for the United States and President Abraham Lincoln, by Rabbi Sabato Morais (15 April 1862)” is shared by the living contributor(s) with a Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication 1.0 Universal license.
Works of related interest:
Prayer for the United States on a Civic Fast Day to avert Civil War, by Rabbi Sabato Morais (26 September 1861)
Prayer for the United States of America on Thanksgiving Day, by Rabbi David Einhorn (26 November 1863)
Prayer for the Protection of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania after the Battle of Gettysburg by Rabbi Sabato Morais (4 July 1863)
Prayer for the United States on a Civic Fast Day during the Civil War, by Rabbi Sabato Morais (30 April 1863)