Janesville54.1°

Area churches show their patriotism

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Catherine W. Idzerda
April 21, 2008
— The upcoming elections.

The war in Iraq.


The growing number of poor, underemployed, underinsured and uninsured.


America’s got plenty to pray about.


On Thursday, May 1, local churches are asking the community to come together for the National Day of Prayer.


In Walworth County, events include a prayer breakfast at the Abbey Resort, and in Rock County, prayer services will be held in the evening.


The Rev. Jeff Keen, senior pastor at the Orchard View Alliance Church, Janesville, is helping organize the multi-church event at the Lenan Learning Center, 4109 Capital Circle, Janesville.


“We’re having several speakers who will talk about different areas of prayer emphasis: churches, pastors, families, schools and government leaders,” Keen said. There are a lot of issues in our country today.”


Keen is hoping people will get a hopeful message about the “power of prayer and the power of our God.


“We’re going to be letting people know how they can pray for these areas and letting them know what God can do,” Keen said.


In Walworth County, the Walworth County Prayer Network will hold its annual prayer breakfast at the Abbey Resort. Last year, about 500 people attended the event.


“It’s a nondenominational gathering, and this year the focus is on families,” said Ellen Gibbs, who is helping organize the event.


Julaine Appling, the executive director of the Wisconsin Family Council, is speaking at this year’s event.


Wisconsin Family Council believes: “The moral and civil well-being of Wisconsin depends on the health of marriages and families.”


The group recently led the successful effort to preserve the one-man, one-woman marriage in Wisconsin.


The history of the National Day of Prayer dates to 1775, when members of the Continental Congress called on people to pray for the burgeoning republic, according to the National Day of Prayer task force.


In 1863, President Abraham Lincoln asked the country for a day of “humiliation, fasting and prayer.”


In 1952, President Harry Truman created an annual day of prayer, and in 1988, President Ronald Reagan permanently set the day as the first Thursday of May.


Prayer events

Here is a partial listing of local National Day of Prayer events. Please contact your local church to see if they have events planned.


Walworth County


Prayer Breakfast


Where: The Abbey Resort, 269 Fontana Boulevard, Fontana.


When: 6:45 a.m. Thursday, May 1.


Cost: One table of ten for $200. Individual tickets are $25. Deadline is April 26. Checks should be made out to Walworth County Prayer Breakfast and mailed to Walworth County Prayer Network, P.O. Box 152, Springfield, WI, 53176.


For more information: Go to www.walworthprayer.org or call (262) 903-2737.


Deadline: Saturday, April 26.


Rock County National Day of Prayer service


Where: Lenan Learning Center, 4109 Capital Circle, Janesville.


When: Songs and worship begins at 6:50 p.m. and event starts at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 1.


Cost: Free.


For more information: (608) 752-7798.


First Congregational Church prayer service


Where: First Congregational Church, 31 W. Milwaukee Ave., Fort Atkinson. The service also will be broadcast over radio station WFAW.


When: 7 p.m., Thursday, May 1.


Cost: Free.


For more information: Call the church at (920) 563-4802.



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