(In a May 4 ceremony in the Rose Garden at the White House, Washington Cardinal Donald Wuerl joined with religious leaders, President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and other dignitaries to observe the National Day of Prayer. The following is the text of Cardinal Wuerl’s prayer that he offered at that gathering.)

In the Prologue to the Gospel of Saint John, we read, “The light shines in the darkness that did not overcome it.”

Good and gracious God who has revealed your glory – a light – to all nations, grant us to preserve the works of your mercy, conduct ourselves in the ways of salvation, always free to walk in your light, in your truth.

Father of all creation, you made us in your image and set us over the works of your hands. Once you chose a people and gave them a destiny, and when you brought them out of bondage to freedom, they carried with them the promise that all people would be blessed and all would be free.

It happened to our fathers, who came to this land, a place of promise and hope. It happens to us still in our time as you lead all people to the blessed vision of peace, walking in the freedom of your light.

Just as we have been called out of darkness into Christ’s marvelous light, let us turn to him in humble but fervent petition, seeking the grace to root out from our hearts all traces of anything that holds us back from walking in the full freedom of the children of God.

O God who gave one origin to all peoples and willed to gather from them one family for yourself, fill our hearts, we pray, with the fire of your love and kindle in all of us a desire for the just advancement of our neighbor, that through the good things which you richly bestow upon all, each human person may be brought to perfection, every division may be removed, and equality and justice be established in human society.

God our loving Creator from your provident hand we have received our right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, you have called us as your people and given us the right and duty to worship you in Spirit and in truth.

We ask you now on this National Day of Prayer to bless us in our vigilance for the gift of religious liberty. Make us always mindful of our solidarity with those who suffer persecution for religion’s sake around the world. Keep us joined in solidarity with brothers and sisters of faith in their times of trial and suffering. Give us the strength of mind and heart to always stand for our freedoms whenever they are threatened and give us the courage to make our voices heard on behalf of all people who suffer persecution today and in defense of the freedom of conscience for all people.

We ask you, Father of light, wisdom and justice, to whom authority is rightly administered, laws are enacted, and judgment decreed, assist with your Holy Spirit of counsel and fortitude, the President of the United States, Donald Trump, that his Administration may be conducted in righteousness and be eminently useful to your people over whom he presides by encouraging due respect for virtue and morality and by a faithful execution of the laws in justice and mercy.

Let the light of your divine wisdom direct the deliberations of Congress, and shine forth in all the proceedings and laws framed for our rule and government so that they may tend to the preservation of peace, the promotion of national happiness, the increase of industry and knowledge; and may perpetuate for us the blessings of equal liberty.

Grant all of this we pray, Heavenly Father, that for sake of our children and our grandchildren and all who come after us, this great land will be always be “One Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

This prayer we make in the name of Our Lord Jesus Christ.