(Photo: Terry Shaffer Hall)
While many come to Washington, D.C., to protest or lobby, one group of people will take part in a marathon reading of the Bible from Genesis to Revelation.
Hundreds of volunteers are expected to take part in the 23rd Annual Bible U.S. Capitol Bible Reading Marathon, which begins Friday evening and concludes May 1, ahead of the National Day of Prayer.
Terry Shaffer Hall, one of the directors for the DC Marathon, told The Christian Post that the purpose of the marathon was to promote biblical literacy and understanding.
"To call people to daily read their Bibles and look to it, as the inspired Word of God, for guidance, truth, hope, peace in troubling times," said Hall. "Standing on the West Steps of the Capitol looking westward and reading God's [Word] across this great nation fills your heart with hope for this country."
The Bible reading on Capitol Hill is one of several locations for the marathon across the country, as Bible Pathway Ministries has organized many of them in and out of the country.
"We are really promoting the global aspect this year," said Karen Hawkins, coordinator for BPM's Bible Reading Marathons, in an earlier interview with CP.
"Our own April 29 to May 3 will be the third global Bible Reading Marathon and will originate from our international headquarters here in Murfreesboro, Tenn., where 95 hours of it will be streamed live over the Internet."
Holding the observance on Capitol Hill has its complications, as Hall explained that a Congressional event has interrupted the normal schedule for their marathon.
"This year the DC event was bumped from the Capitol by an event by a member of Congress. We have to begin early on Friday and end Tuesday. All the other Bible Readathons will be Sunday to Thursday," said Hall.
The reading schedule will be broken up into segments lasting several minutes. Participants include volunteers from different religious denominations and church groups.
Every year, the marathon intentionally corresponds with the National Day of Prayer, which this year is Thursday, May 3.
"We work closely with regional and national NDP and believe that the Bible readings lay a solid foundation for the NDP," said Hall.
"We will certainly attend encourage everyone to join in prayer for our nation, …to cherish and exercise our First Amendment rights and to join together diverse believers around reading the Bible."