‘Faith in the Future’ event set

ALL SMILES — The 2019 Faith in the Future Prayer Breakfast will be held at 8 a.m. Friday at Froehlich’s Classic Corner. Making plans for the 15th-annual gathering are, from left, Tracy McManamon, event co-chair; Jimmie Bruce, president of Eastern Gateway Community College and the keynote speaker; and Mike Florak, co-chair. -- Linda Harris

STEUBENVILLE — Organizers of the annual Faith in the Future Prayer Breakfast say they can’t take credit for all the good things that have happened in the community since its inception 15 years ago.

“But I think it’s definitely played a role,” co-chair Mike Florak said. “It’s grown and grown.”

Eastern Gateway Community College President Jimmie Bruce will be the keynote speaker for this year’s prayer breakfast, set for 8 a.m. Friday at Froehlich’s Classic Corner.

“Education has a major impact on the economy and the city,” co-chair Tracy McManamon said. “I can’t think of a better ambassador to show what can be done with faith and hard work than Bruce. What they have done at Eastern Gateway has been remarkable.”

McManamon said the prayer breakfast was started in 2005 as a vehicle to bring area leaders together to pray for economic blessings for the community. He said it’s traditionally held the Friday before Thanksgiving “to show our thankfulness for the gifts we have received.”

R. Daniel Conlon, who at the time was the bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Steubenville, was the driving force behind the breakfast.

“Bishop Conlon initially started it,” he said. “It was his leadership, he felt we needed to put God first in reviving our economy and he brought together probably 30 people from all walks of life. He wanted us to take the lead, he wanted us to lead our community back by seeking God’s intervention.”

McManamon said it’s been incredible “seeing the different churches, the different denominations come together under one roof and how united everybody is for the good, the blessings in our community.”

“I think it’s important to mention this breakfast draws people from the area representing all faiths,” he added. “We do have tremendous participation by all the churches, and we’re very grateful for that.

Florak called it “an amazing event.”

“It’s been incredible to watch it grow and hear the feedback,” said Florak, pointing out they also hold a monthly prayer luncheon that’s “knocked it out of the park.”

“We do ask for a donation of $10 at the door,” McManamon said. “Reservations really need to be made to myself or Mike by noon Wednesday.” Reach McManamon at tmcmanamon@onesourcebenefits.com or Florak at mflorak@franciscan.edu.


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