Locals observe National Day of PrayerA group of close to 100 members of the clergy, local governments, the military and the community came together last Thursday evening to pray.
By: Randy Hanson, Hudson Star-Observer
A group of close to 100 members of the clergy, local governments, the military and the community came together last Thursday evening to pray.
The National Day of Prayer service was held at the Hudson Golf Club and sponsored by the Hudson Area Ministerial Association.
The theme of this year’s event was “A mighty fortress is our God,” which was related by Joni Earackson Tada in a video at the start of the service.
Transport for Christ Chaplain Tim Sackett gave the welcome and opening prayer.
Pastor Mark Neumann of Trinity Lutheran Church read passages from Paul’s first letter to Timothy, including the instruction in Chapter 2 to pray for “kings and all those in authority.”
Neumann also led the pledges to the American and Christian flags. The recitation of the pledges was followed by the playing the national anthem.
All elected officials, civil servants and military personnel in attendance were asked to stand and be recognized by group, and then Father Guy Usher of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church said a prayer for the nation.
State Rep. Dean Knudson, R-Hudson, was one of the elected officials in attendance.
City Council President Lori Bernard, standing in for Mayor Alan Burchill (who was reported to be ill), was asked to describe her role in city government and how her faith affects her service.
“I look to the word of God for guidance,” Bernard told Pastor Larry Szyman of Faith Community Church.
She said her first service is to God, and then to her Third District constituents.
Asked how she would like to be prayed for, Bernard requested pray for wisdom and courage to do what is right.
Fourth District Alderperson Lee Wyland also was asked about his role in city government and how his service is influenced by his faith.
He said he doesn’t talk about his faith often, but that it is entwined with how he goes about representing the residents of the Fourth District.
“Service is about setting aside my personal interests to serve the people,” he said.
Pastor Jacob Oreso of St. Croix Valley Christians for Life offered the prayer for Wyland and other City Council members. Wyland requested prayer for wisdom, ideas and eloquence.
St. Croix County Board Supervisor Richard “Buzz” Marzolf related how health problems had brought him closer to God. He asked Hudson Hospital Chaplain Pam Wirtz to pray for peace, and for soldiers on both sides of the conflicts that the United States is involved in.
Wisconsin National Guard Spec. Rachel Wilebski told about her 2009 service in Iraq.
“It seems like when you are tested your faith is amplified,” Wilebski said. “I found a lot of comfort in Jesus and in God.”
Sackett offered prayer for U.S. military members in Afghanistan and Iraq, and for their family relationships that are sometimes strained in their absence.
Richard Fike, a lay leader from Beth Immanuel Sabbath Christian Fellowship, offered a prayer for the clergy at the close of the service.