Proclamation by the Council of Massachusetts, setting apart Thursday, the 1st of August next, to be observed throughout the Colony as a day of solemn humiliation, fasting and prayer



It being our incumbent duty to acknowledge God in all our ways and to commit our affairs, both public and private, to his all wise direction and guidance, and especially in a day of singular and general calamity to implore his merciful interposition; and it having been the laudable practice of this Goverment to recomment and appoint days of public Fasting and Prayer upon special and solemn occasions; and this Court apprehending the present season to be big withthe most important events, not only to this, but to all the United American Colonies, and sensible that these events are at the disposal of the Supreme of the Universe:


We have thougth fit, with the advice of Council, and at the desire of the House of Representatives, to appoint and so hereby set apart Thursday, the first day of August next, to be obseved thoughtout this Colony as a day of solemn humlilation, fasting and prayer, hereby calling upon Ministers and People publicly to humble themeselves under the righteous hand of God; penitently to acknowledgetheir many heinous and aggravated sins, and righteousness of his dispensation towards them; with devout and importunates supplications to implosr Almighty God that the frowns of his Provindence, manifested by the severe drought where with some parts of the land have been visted,and all the humiliating events which have lately taken palce in America, may, under the Divine influence, produce a sincere repentance and thorough reformation amoung all orders and degrees of persons; that he would maercifully remove the present tokens and effects of his righteous displeasure against us, and prevent those more severe judgments that our sins deserve and which in the present aspects of Divine Providence, we are warned to prepare for; that he would command his blessing upon all our public Councils in this important crisis of our public affairs; protect and preserve the life of our General, his officers and soliders; succeed and proper their arms wherever employed; that cruel and unnatural enemies may be defeated in their open attemps, secret plots, and diabolical machinations to subjugate or destroy us ; and this people, placing their hopes and confidence in that God in whom their patriotick and pious fathers trusted, and were delivered, may be dispose, with many cheerfulness, to offer themselves for the defence of their bleeding country, and of those rights, civil and religious, in in the enjoyment of which the peace and happiness of the present and future generations depend; that he will be pleased to hear the cry of the prisoners, and grant a speedy liberation to all capivated brethren; that he would water the each with timely refreshing showers, and cause this year to abound with health and plenty, and prevent the spreading of any epidemical sickness among us; that he would put a stop to the wanton effuison of human blood, gurad and defend our sea-coasts from the invasions of those sons of war destined by Britain indiscriminately to burn and destory ; that he would protect our frontiers from the inroads of the Northern savages; that he would pour out his spirit upon his people, and his blessing upon their offspring; and that he would spread the peaceful Kingdom of the Divine Redeemer over the face of the whole habitable world.

And all servile labor and recreation are forbidden on the said day.

Given at the Council Chamber, at Watertown, this 4th day of July, in the year of our Lord 1776. Singed by the major part of the Council. By their Honours' command:

John Avery, Jun˙, Dep. Secretary. God save Amercia