Kneeling down to lift nation up: National Day of Prayer celebrated on Fort McPherson
Amanda Melby, president of the Protestant Women of the Chapel on Fort McPherson, kneels in prayer May 7 during the 58th annual observation of the National Day of Prayer. Members of the Fort McPherson community gathered under the flag on Hedekin Field to pray for the government, the military, the media, the business community and education community. The observance was established in 1952. In 1988 it was designated by the United States Congress, under President Ronald Reagan, to be held on the first Thursday of May as a day for people to come together and pray for their country.

Kevin Stabinsky
Sentinel assistant editor

With the economic crisis, people are looking for help beyond themselves. While the news is filled with stories of government intervention, there is also another higher power people can turn to.

"Beyond what the stimulus and bailouts can do, you can get any help from God," said Chap. (Col.) Carl Young, U.S. Army Garrison (USAG) chaplain.

Young lead several dozen members of the Fort McPherson community May 7, during the 58th Annual National Day of Prayer.

During the event, which was held at the base of the flag pole on Hedekin Field, attendees joined together to lift up their prayers, pleas and thanks to God.

The theme of the 2009 National Day of Prayer was "Prayer ... America's hope."
"Prayer is America's hope, even in our most hopeless times," said Beth Moore, 2009 Honorary Chairman for the National Day of Prayer Task Force. "Even if man were at his worst, as he was in the day of Noah, there was still hope in the form of a boat. Our hope today, that boat that rescues us, is the power of prayer. We are never hopeless."

Amanda Melby, president of the Protestant Women of the Chapel on Fort McPherson, shared similar sentiments, saying she believes prayer in the name of Jesus Christ is the only hope for America.

"It is my sincere prayer that America repents of its sins and turns it heart to God," she said.

Other prayers expressed throughout the ceremony were prayers directed specifically for the government, the military, the media, the business community and those in the education system.

Although these prayers were prompted from the NDPTF's prayer guide for the year, the gathering did not restrict participants from sending their own prayers, petitions, supplications and thanks to God for the blessings in their lives.

"I'm thankful for our freedom in America to gather together to call upon God," Melby said, describing one of her prayers.

Young said he was thankful, as well as encouraged, to see so many willing to sacrifice their lunch hour to attend.

"It was encouraging to see so many people take their lunch hour to come out here and stand under this flag to reach out and talk to God," Young said.

Although not on par with the miracle found in the Bible of the feeding of the 5,000, the Lord, or at least his ministers in the chapel, did provide food for the hungry after the event.

Likewise, just as the chapel filled the attendees' physical needs, they expressed their faith that God would hear the prayers lifted up and answered.

"The key to success is in God," Young said.

Page last updated Fri May 15th, 2009 at 13:03