FORT BENNING, Ga. - Individuals from a variety of faith backgrounds will gather at 9 a.m. Wednesday at the Benning Conference Center with a single purpose: prayer.

Although Chaplain (BG) Donald Rutherford, deputy chief of chaplains for the U.S. Army, the intended guest speaker, is unable to attend, the theme for the breakfast remains the same.

"(The National Prayer Breakfast) was something that leaders in Washington, D.C., and government began conducting ... to emphasize the importance of prayer in the life of our nation," said Chaplain (LTC) John Routzahn Jr., deputy garrison chaplain for operations. "It draws national attention to the significance of prayer."

The interdenominational event includes prayers by Dawud Salahuddin Bin Pearson, a Muslim imam, and Chaplain (MAJ) Carlos Huerta, a Jewish chaplain with the 30th Adjutant General Reception Battalion. Entertainment includes the MCOE Band's woodwind ensemble and a musical selection by Rachel Metcalf.

"My hope would be that when people come away from the prayer breakfast, not only would the importance of prayer be enforced in their own lives, but it would challenge them to go deeper in their prayer life," Routzahn said. "Prayer is the means, I think, of strengthening one's faith, of coming in communion with God and actually communion with our fellow soldiers and fellow human beings."

The breakfast line opens at 8:30 a.m. The buffet includes scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon, hashbrowns, grits, fruit and biscuits. Reserve your ticket as soon as possible by calling 706-545-2289. The suggested donation is $6 for junior enlisted Soldiers and civilians and $8 for NCOs and officers.

History of the National Prayer Breakfast

The National Prayer Breakfast began during World War II with small groups from the U.S. Congress who met for prayer, Bible study and spiritual fellowship. In 1953, it became the Presidential Prayer Breakfast, led by President Dwight Eisenhower.

The name was changed in 1970 to the National Prayer Breakfast. Each year, the event includes members and leaders from the military, Cabinet, Supreme Court, Congress and civilian and business sectors. The Washington D.C. breakfast usually occurs on the first Thursday of February.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16