The Christian Post website reports today (May 3, 2012) that President Obama today signed his annual proclamation designating the first Thursday in May as the National Day of Prayer -- a tradition that began under President Truman in 1952.
However, some atheists and secular groups are planning protests and are demanding that the annual day be discontinued.
"On this National Day of Prayer, we give thanks for our democracy that respects the beliefs and protects the religious freedom of all people to pray, worship, or abstain according to the dictates of their conscience," reads the president's proclamation, in part.
The Rev. Barry Lynn -- executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State -- takes issue with the president's words and says the annual day has been "hijacked" by conservatives to promote a "far-right religious-political agenda."