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Pastors to pray at county courthouse

Next Thursday, local pastors will gather, as they have for three decades, at noon on the steps of the Lawrence County Courthouse as part of the National Day of Prayer.

This year’s theme is to Pray for America and unity, based upon Ephesians 4:3: “Making every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.”

Rob Hale, pastor of the Ironton First Church of the Nazarene and president of the Ironton Area Ministerial Association, said five pastors would pray for America in all walks of life.

“They will pray for unity in America, unity of the churches of America, unity in the families, workplace and communities in America, unity among all ethnicities and people in America and unity that we agree clearly, unite visibly and pray extraordinarily for the next great spiritual awakening in America,” Hale said.

The pastors at the event include the Rev. Terry Jones of Resurrection Hope Church UMC, James Kearns with Bald Knob Brethren Church, Jeff Cremeans of the City Mission Church, Margaret Tyson of Quinn Chapel Church and Sallie Schisler of Christ Episcopal Church. Susan Taylor will sing the National Anthem.

Hale said pastors have had this event at the courthouse for probably the past 30 years.

“We decided this year to ask people to come on their lunch break to hear us pray. And we decided to feed them,” Hale said. “We are going to have grill and grill up some hot dogs. We’re going to have chips and Cokes and the pastors will be cooking and serving. It is really going to be fun.”

Hale said the forecast is calling for good weather, which helps bring in a crowd.

“Two years ago, we had about 100 people. And then last year, it was cold and nasty and we had about 25 people,” he said. “But next week, it is supposed to be a beautiful, beautiful week.”

According to the National Day of Prayer website, the first National Day of Prayer was created in 1952 by both houses of Congress and signed into law by President Harry S. Truman.

In 1988, the law was unanimously amended by both the House and the Senate and signed into law by President Ronald Reagan on Thursday, May 5, 1988, designating the first Thursday of May as a day of national prayer. Every president since 1952 has signed a National Day of Prayer proclamation.