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Day of Prayer observances set throughout Mid-Ohio Valley

PARKERSBURG — Mid-Ohio Valley residents are invited to gather in prayer for the nation, state and local communities Thursday at National Day of Prayer observances.

Vienna will start things off at 9 a.m. at the flagpole in front of the City Building on 29th Street, Mayor Randy Rapp said.

“We always appreciate anybody else coming out with us,” he said.

Non-denominational gatherings are slated for noon in Parkersburg, Williamstown, Belpre and Marietta.

In Parkersburg, multiple pastors will speak and lead prayer for various levels of government, law enforcement, the military, schools and students, media and the arts, said Tim Baer, one of the event’s organizers.

“It’s important to go to the Lord in prayer,” Baer said. “He’s told us what that can do and what He desires us to do in prayer.

“We believe … that in agreement, there’s a lot more that can happen,” he said.

Baer said a number of people have engaged in focused prayer for Parkersburg and other cities for years. While he acknowledged there have been problems locally, he credits prayer with Parkersburg being “spared from a lot of the hardships” other cities suffered during the Recession as one example of the power of the practice.

Belpre Mayor Mike Lorentz said he usually attends the Marietta Day of Prayer in front of the Washington County Courthouse, but this year Belpre is holding its own observance at the gazebo in Civitan Park.

The Rev. Emory Clark, pastor of Rockland United Methodist Church, said people who work in the city aren’t able to attend the Marietta event on their lunch break, so he suggested having one in Belpre as well.

“They can take their lunch hour and make it to the prayer service and still make it back to work,” he said.

The National Day of Prayer was created in 1952 by a joint resolution of Congress and signed into law by President Harry Truman. Observances are planned around the country Thursday.

The nonprofit National Day of Prayer Task Force, which emphasizes a Judeo-Christian expression of the observance, has selected the theme “Love One Another,” based on the scripture John 13:34, in which Jesus Christ tells his disciples, “Love one another, as I have loved you.”

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Observances

National Day of Prayer observances, Thursday, May 2

* Belpre — noon, gazebo, Civitan Park

* Marietta — noon, Washington County Courthouse

* Parkersburg — noon, Bicentennial Park, downtown Parkersburg

* Vienna — 9 a.m., in front of the City Building, 609 29th St.

* Williamstown — noon, City Building, 100 W. Fifth St.

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