National Day of Prayer to be observed Thursday in Central Park

By David Hotle, The JOURNAL


At noon Thursday in Washington Central Park, people from Washington will join with people from across the nation to pray for the United States and for Unity as the National day of Prayer is observed in Washington. The public is invited to the event.

The corporate prayer event represents a diverse group of churches, faiths, creeds and cultures coming together as one voice to pray for the nation, state, city and communities and for God?s divine intervention in everyone?s daily life and concerns. The one-hour program will consist of specific prayer topics from area pastors, public figures, community leaders, along with the Pledge of Allegiance and a prepared proclamation.

The tradition of the National Day of Prayer actually predates the founding of the United States, as the Continental Congress proclaimed a day of prayer in 1775. In 1952, Congress established an annual day of prayer and in 1988 President Ronald Reagan signed into law the designation of the first Thursday in May to be the annual observance of the National Day of Prayer.

The theme this year is Pray for America ? UNITY, based on Ephesians 4:3 which challenges people to mobilize unified public prayer for America, ?making every effort to keep the unity of spirit through the bond of peace.?

Through the efforts of the National Day or Prayer Task Force, more than 35,000 prayer meetings will be conducted by about 40,000 volunteers across the United States. Several million people are expected to participate in the call for prayer.

Dr. Ronnie Floyd, president of the National Day of Prayer, said that the event is more important now than ever.

?Mobilizing unified public prayer for America may be the most important thing we can do right now,? he said. ?America is broken. Division is undeniable. Racial tension is alarming. Lawlessness abounds. Reconciliation appears impossible. The Natiojnal Day of Prayer in America is needed now more than ever before in our nation?s history.?