People pray for the Greencastle-Antrim community

PAT FRIDGEN, Echo Pilot
David and Anna Lee Kopp, left, and Lauren Gibble, with children Elise, 6, and Levi, 3, sing along with Deanna Martin, at piano, during the National Day of Prayer observance.

Greencastle area residents joined others across the nation to observe National Day of Prayer on Thursday, May 7.  They congregated in First United Methodist Church for a program, and afterwards many stayed for the outdoor service in front of borough hall.

Rev. Stacy Crawford opened with comments on the country.

“Things have changed,” he said. “America is different. When Christians are confused, it is a serious thing.”

He referenced the Scripture verse for the 2015 theme “Lord, hear our cry.” I Kings 8:28 read: Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is praying in your presence this day.

"That is a hopeful thing,” Crawford continued. “We need to remember who we are.”

Six features of American life were covered in prayer. Brad Graham, Antrim Township administrator, noted that every government is put in place by God.

“It is a reflection of us. If people with integrity are involved, government will run with integrity.” The opposite was also true, he said.

Chris Johnston, owner of the shop, spoke on behalf of businesses. She prayed for their success and stewardship, that all things were possible through God.

Rev. Douglas Beltzner, Greencastle Presbyterian Church, called the assembly “insiders” of the church, but that “in reality it is Christ’s church.” He prayed for unity.

Homemaker Stephanie Ziebarth spoke for families. She reported that 70 percent of all youth didn’t follow their faith after high school, and of people who married, 40 percent would divorce.

“We’re in good shape if we stay close to God through prayer,” she encouraged.

Dr. Bob Crider, chief educational officer of the Greencastle-Antrim School District, prayed for everyone involved in education. “God has expectations of us to take care of the children.”

Heidi Sanders, U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel, retired, remembered the military. She prayed for each branch of service, Wounded Warriors, families, leaders, and those who perished in the line of duty.

Other participants in the event were Janet Williams, Barbara Ezolt, Trail Life USA from Otterbein United Brethren Church, Janice Bartles, Deanna Martin and Rev. David Rawley.

The outdoor service was led by Rev. Milton Herrold from Macedonia United Brethren Church.

The Day of Prayer was sponsored by the G-A Ministerium and G-A Women’s Fellowship. Committee members were Rawley, Bartles, Donna Greifzu, Lorraine Hess, Marie Musselman, Jenn Robertson, Gloria Stahl and Jean Zimmerman.

Other people involved in arrangements were Dorcas Gearhart, Annabelle Henry, Doris Oberholzer, Esther Walck and Lisa Crawford.