President Trump Proclaims Sunday ‘Day of Prayer’ For Harvey Victims

President Trump has declared Sunday a “Day of Prayer” for those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

“I don’t know when this was done last, but it’s been a long time ago,” Trump told reporters. “Is that a correct statement? It’s been a long time ago.”

Trump’s declaration comes one day after Texas Gov. Gregg Abbott issued a proclamation, alongside Franklin Graham and Vice President Mike Pence, making Sep. 3 a day of prayer within the state for Harvey victims.

“Americans have always come to the aid of their fellow countrymen. Friend helping friend, neighbor helping neighbor, stranger helping stranger — we’ve seen it perhaps more so than at any time, so vividly at least, during Hurricane Harvey,” Trump said Friday from the Oval Office. “From the beginning of our nation, Americans have joined together in prayer during times of great need to ask for God’s blessing and God’s guidance. When we look across Texas and Louisiana, we see the American spirit of service embodied by countless men and women.”

“Families have given food and shelter to those in need. Houses of worship have organized efforts to clean up communities and repair damaged homes. People have never seen anything quite like this. Individuals of every background are striving for the same goal: to aid and comfort people facing devastating losses. As Americans, we know that no challenge is too great for us to overcome — no challenge,” he continued. “We invite all Americans to join us as we continue to pray for those who have lost family members and friends, and for those who are suffering from this great crisis.”

Meanwhile, the governor of Texas has also called on his fellow Texans and people around the country to pray for Texas on Sunday. Abbott applauded Texans for helping each other through the ordeal and noted they are grateful for the support and resources they’ve received in days since Harvey struck.

Robert Jeffress, senior pastor at First Baptist Church in Dallas, was among the clergy who prayed with Trump in the Oval Office on Friday.

Harvey’s death toll has risen to at least 40 people. Recovery and repair efforts could cost nearly $200 million, making Harvey one of the most expensive natural disasters in American history.