GREENVILLE — The 65th annual National Day of Prayer will be held May 5 with a local observance to be conducted from noon to 12:45 p.m. outside the Greenville City Building at 100 Public Square.
With the theme “Wake Up America,” this event is sponsored by the Greater Greenville Ministerial Association in cooperation with the City of Greenville’s mayor’s office.
The program will feature the Color Guard from American Legion Post 140 and music by The Simple Gifts Quartet.
A number of local individuals will be offering prayers during the event. They include Greenville Mayor Mike Bowers, WDTN Anchorman John Seibel, Darke County Common Pleas Court Judge Jonathan Hein and Dental Operations Planner Amy Denlinger of Midmark Corp.
Bowers, on Wednesday morning, signed the proclamation declaring May 5 as National Day of Prayer in Greenville.
The proclamation indicated that the National Day of Prayer is a tradition first proclaimed by the Continental Congress in 1775, and that this year’s theme “Wake Up America” emphasizes the need for individuals, both corporately and individually, to return to the God of Fathers in reverence for His holy name.
It noted that this being the 65th annual National Day of Prayer will have profound significance not only for local Greenville community, but also for the entire country as “it is an unprecedented opportunity to see the Lord’s healing and renewing power.”
The proclamation also stated, “At this crucial time for our nation, we can do nothing more important than pray, so do as in the scripture of Isaiah 58:1 “Shout it aloud, do not hold back. Raise your voice like a trumpet.’”
Through the efforts of the National Day of Prayer Task Force, more than 35,000 prayer gatherings will be conducted by about 40,000 volunteers across the United States. Several million people are expected to participate in this call to prayer. Other events in various communities across the United States may include: choirs and bands performing songs relating to prayer; community prayer breakfasts or luncheons; daytime prayer walks; and evening worship and prayer services or gatherings. National Day of Prayer is a time for people of all faiths to pray together in their own way.
National Day of Prayer is not a public holiday. Schools, post offices, stores and other businesses and organizations are open as usual. Public transport services run to their usual schedules and no extra congestion on highways is to be expected.
According to historical accounts, in 1775 the Continental Congress allocated a time for prayer in forming a new nation. Over the years, there have been calls for a day of prayer, including from President Abraham Lincoln in 1863. On April 17, 1952, President Harry Truman signed a bill proclaiming the National Day of Prayer into law in the United States. President Reagan amended the law in 1988, designating the first Thursday of May each year as the National Day of Prayer.
The National Prayer Committee was formed in the United States in 1972. It went on to create the National Day of Prayer Task Force, with the intended purpose of coordinating events for the National Day of Prayer. According to the Legal Information Institute, the President shall issue each year a proclamation designating the first Thursday in May as a National Day of Prayer on which the people of the United States may turn to God in prayer and meditation at churches, in groups, and as individuals.
For more information on the local event, Minister Jim Morehouse can be contacted at 937-547-1557 or go to www.NationalDayofPrayer.org. In case of inclement weather, the event will be held at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 201 S. Broadway, Greenville.