NEW YORK - A small group of congregants from several churches in Brooklyn added another night of prayer yesterday to their typical week to align their prayers with what was anticipated to be millions of Americans who partook in the 55th annual National Day of Prayer.
Calvary Cathedral of Praise was joined by 22 other churches in the Greater New York region alone as prayers rang across the nation from coast to coast.
"We know there are other churches that are praying," Dr. Osbourn Ross, associate pastor at Calvary Cathedral of Praise, told the gathered believers Thursday evening. "We are not alone. We might be here by ourselves, but God does not see us as an individual church. He sees us as a nation."
The Calvary group fell to their knees and bowed their heads, some with hands over their faces, in individual prayers. They joined hands in small circles to pray for personal, regional, national and international revival.
The mumbling, the cries and the words were just a small dose of what was being lifted up from at least 40,000 other sites.
Community members from Coshocton County in Ohio spent their Thursday afternoon at the courtsquare for the local National Day of Prayer program. Clergy, governmental and school officials and the public in Coldwater, Mich., started their NDOP observation early morning to honor God.
In the meantime, a 24 hour prayer conference call was made available by Greater Calling a Christian teleconferencing ministry to lead groups of up to 96 people in corporate prayer.
Although a one-day observance, the National Day of Prayer was also coordinated to impel ongoing prayers for a world in need of it, as the Rev. Billy Graham had earlier indicated.
In Brooklyn, Ross told the prayerful to not only lift up God's name on the first Thursday of every May, but to make it a daily activity.
NDOP Chairman Shirley Dobson similarly commented, "We're hoping that people won't see [the National Day of Prayer] just as one day. We're encouraging people to set aside five minutes a day to pray for the 'freedom five' - government, media, church, education, and family."
The National Day of Prayer Task Force encourages participants to submit their event reports at www.nationaldayofprayer.org.