National Day of Prayer • Thursday, May 6, 2021
by Stephanie Fain
If we were to schedule our lives around our spiritual needs with the same discipline that we schedule our lives in accordance with our financial demands, given the current state of the world we are living in today, every day would need to be National Day of Prayer. Close your eyes and just imagine the last time you were surrounded by people you felt safe, unconditionally accepted and loved by, now put them on mute, multiply them by say 50 and replace the backdrop with scenic Buchanan Downtown Common on Thursday, May 6th. If you can’t conjure up that memory, I invite you to come and make your first one with me, it will be my first National Day of Prayer as well. Our local celebration at Buchanan Commons, just south of Buchanan Farmers’ Market behind Buchanan District Library, is thoughtfully and lovingly coordinated by BAMA, the Buchanan Area Ministerial Association. The theme of this gathering is “Lord, pour out Your love, life, and liberty.” How very relevant and sorely needed.
Rebecka Hoyt, Editor of The Buchanan Chronicle, states, “When I was in high school, we had a small group of students participate in “See you at the Pole.” This is similar to National Day of Prayer, but it happens in September. We all met around the flagpole in front of the school and prayed for the students, teachers, and staff, and anything else that came to our minds. So, I am excited to participate in this National Day of Prayer. I pray that the weather will be good and that many others from the ‘Nicest Place in America’ – Buchanan, MI will come.”
There is power in prayer. There is power in numbers. There is power in this community. Together, the energy that type of synergy produces is described as magical. What is National Day of Prayer? To our American fore-fathers, the fate of our country and everyone they knew and loved, was quite literally in God’s hands and this public practice of humility was taken very seriously. How seriously? National Day of Prayer started out similar to Thanksgiving, but I think the reason this didn’t catch on so well, is instead of stuffing your face into a coma with Nana’s delicious mashed potatoes and turkey, it was encouraged to instead, give thanks and fast (no turkey.) Signed into law finally, in 1952 by President Harry S. Truman as National Day of Prayer, Title 36, Section 119 of the US law states: “The President shall issue each year a proclamation designating the first Thursday in May as a National Day of Prayer on which the people of the United States may turn to God in prayer and meditation at churches, in groups, and as individuals.” What does that mean? Our President, by law, is legally required to sign a proclamation encouraging Americans to pray every year.
Today, the world’s focus has changed, priorities have shifted with added focus on personal achievement and increasingly expensive/time-consuming distractions tempting us at every color-filled corner, leading us not toward but away from each other, along with that magic synergy: power in numbers, community and prayer. I hope we recognize National Day of Prayer as an opportunity to be a part of something bigger, an opportunity for some to rejoin your community from hibernation and relite that spark. Bowing our heads with countless brothers and sisters from all denominations and attending variances, we will be uniting in prayer synonymously with like-minded communities all over this country for this world and each other. There will be a ton of good people with positive energy at one of the many ground zeroes, downtown on Thursday, May 6th (time TBD). Just in case you cannot make it, you can tag along online by referencing the flyer in this article, join in prayer with us and know you are part of something greater.
Never stop growing, Buchanan!