April 22nd – Saturday

So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith. – Galatians 6:10

President George Washington issued a Proclamation of Neutrality on this day in 1793 to define the stance of the U.S. on foreign conflicts. When news of the French Revolution declaring war on Great Britain finally reached America, President Washington called a cabinet meeting. Three days later, the U.S. released the proclamation “forbidding its citizens to take part in any hostilities in the seas, on behalf of or against any of the belligerent powers.” Citizens would be indicted for violations of the policy and the government would not protect them if they were tried by a hostile nation. Americans were initially divided on the issue, so the proclamation elicited large amounts of criticism. However, public opinion moved away from French support after French Minister Edmond Genet converted a seized British vessel into a French warship in the U.S. a few months later. In 1794, Congress passed the Neutrality Act, giving the president’s policy the authority of law and recognition by the legislative branch that foreign policy largely exists in the constitutional realm of the executive branch.

As the Lord leads, pray with us…

  • For U.S. Ambassador to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland Jane Hartley to seek God’s leading in her diplomatic efforts.
  • For wisdom for U.S. Ambassador to the French Republic and to the Principality of Monaco Denise Bauer.

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