STEUBENVILLE - The Rev. Jason Elliot provided a history lesson and a call for prayer to the approximately 125 people attending the 20th-annual National Day of Prayer service in Jefferson County.
"In the midst of a desperate situation at Valley Forge, Gen. George Washington humbled himself to pray. Kneeling in the nearby woods alone Gen. Washington was praying to the God of the armies seeking divine intervention. Washington humbled himself and got down on his knees and today and every day we are called to do the same," Elliott preached Thursday afternoon.
"Washington faced adversity and so do we. We see families with issues and longing for reconciliation. They are hurting and running the race with the pedal to the metal. We face a struggling economy. But we must remember our help comes from the Lord," said Elliott, senior pastor at the Westminster Presbyterian Church, where the service was held.
JOINING IN PRAYERS — Approximately 125 people joined in prayer Thursday at the 20th-annual National Day of Prayer held Thursday at the Westminster Presbyterian Church in Steubenville. Among those taking part in the services were, from left, 4th Ward Councilwoman Angela Suggs, Sharon Kirtdoll and the Rev. Ashley Steele of Urban Mission Ministries. -Dave Gossett
"The Continental Army emerged victorious after Valley Forge. The Almighty God honored Washington's prayer. Blessed is the nation where God is Lord," concluded Elliott.
Several local ministers spoke during the 90-minute service that also featured stirring music by the Steubenville High School Choir.
"From many ... we are one. From many ... we are one. From many ... we are one nation and one nation under a mighty God," invoked the Rev. Calvin McLoyd of the Second Baptist Church.
The Rev. Gary Halberg, pastor of the Word of Life Church in Steubenville, asked for prayer requests from the audience.
The requests included an end to abortions, prayers for servicemen and women in Iraq and Afghanistan, prayers for President Obama and a personal prayer for a woman's son-in-law who is being treated for pancreatic cancer.
"So many concerns in our midst and we bring these concerns to you Lord," stated Halberg.
During the Concerts of Prayer, Andrew Hrezo of the Serra Club of Steubenville prayed for "an end to abortions, health care system that better represents our needs and freedom of conscience."
Evangelist Eva Lucious of the Deliverance Temple prayed for the nation, and the Rev. Vaughn Foster called for prayers for the city, communities in the county and Jefferson County.
"This city is not a Little Chicago. It is a city of churches and a place where people live," said Foster.