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National Day of Prayer set for Miss-Lou

On Thursday, our nation observes a National Day of Prayer. This is the 62nd observation of this national prayer day in our nation.

I am extending an invitation to residents of the Miss-Lou to attend our local prayer service at noon Thursday on the lawn of Natchez City Hall on South Pearl Street. I extend this invitation on behalf of the ministers of the Natchez Ministerial Alliance who have planned the program.

The theme for this year’s prayer service, chosen by the national task force, is “Pray for America.” This is a relevant theme this year as our nation struggles with many issues: economic insecurity, unemployment, violence and terrorism and subtle challenges to our constitutional rights. The theme is also relevant for individuals who struggle with anxiety, health-related issues, family issues and the educational challenges facing young people. The local prayer service on Thursday is our community’s way of humbly seeking God’s guidance, wisdom, protection and blessing.

I want to express the wish of the members of the Ministerial Alliance to encourage a large representative gathering this year. Whether you are a person who prays regularly and finds it easy to pray, or whether you are a person who finds prayer to be difficult, I want to ask you join us on Thursday. The Bible tells us that where two or three are gathered in Jesus’ name, he is present. The anticipated length of the prayer service is 45 minutes.

Members of the Ministerial Alliance will lead specific parts of the prayer service. Pastor Richard Wood will lead the opening invocation and welcome. I will deliver the message/reflection on prayer. General intercessions for the community leaders, teachers/educational leaders, local churches, medical personnel and services, and individuals and families will be led by pastors Nance Hixon, Clifton Marvel, Robert Wallis, James Brooks and Dale Little. In addition, an opportunity for prayer by individuals who are in attendance will be available. Two well-known songs/hymns will be Amazing Grace and America the Beautiful.

The local Ministerial Alliance hosted this annual prayer service at Memorial Park for a number of years. It is hoped that holding it during the lunch hour and at the more central site of City Hall will make it easier for many people to attend. I encourage those who cannot attend to take a few minutes in Bible reading or personal prayer to unite with us in spirit.

The officers of the Natchez Ministerial Alliance for 2013 are: President Richard Wood (Westminster Presbyterian Church) Vice-President Bo Swilley (Community Chapel), and Treasurer Nance Hixon (Grace United Methodist Church).


David O’Connor is the pastor at St. Mary Basilica and Assumption Catholic Church.