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‘Prayer storm gathers walk and pray for city

‘Prayer storm gathers walk and pray for city
March 24
00:00 2016
Photos by Timothy Ramsey
The participants of the Prayer Walk starting their 5K walk on Saturday in downtown Winston-Salem

BY TIMOTHY RAMSEY 

FOR THE CHRONICLE

The power of prayer seems to have a profound effect in the lives of people of all faiths. Matthew 18:20 states “For where two or more are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”

Building on that theme, the religious community of Winston-Salem held the “Prayer Storm” on Saturday, March 19, in downtown Winston-Salem. Over a hundred people registered for the event which included a 5K walk around the city’s downtown area near Highway 52.  Even with the rain and wind, there was still a very good turnout.

This idea was the brainchild of Ashley Reyes of Winston Salem First who contacted Chuck Spong of the Love Out Loud nonprofit organization, who in turn gathered other individuals in the religious community to join the event. “I just really have a heart for prayer,” said Reyes. “I love the Lord and I believe the Lord is crazy about this city and people in the city, as he is all of his children. I was really pumped about having a citywide prayer gathering and that we could come together in unity as the body of Christ and not separate churches, but everyone coming together to pray for the love of God to come across the city.”

Reverend Laura Spangler of Lloyd Presbyterian Church said, “I believe it’s very important for us to pray for our city and we have weekly gatherings at our church to pray and this prayer storm is just part of that whole process. We just feel as though we need God in our city and we are here today for fellowship and prayer and just feel the love.”

The 5K walk started in the P4 parking lot of the Inmar building and wrapped around the neighborhood and business areas near Highway 52. Along the way the participants routinely stopped and prayed with one another.

Prayer walk participant Debra Surles said she decided to participate because she knows that God is real and that Jesus rose from the dead for our sins and we became free by the Holy Spirit. Surles became overcome with emotion while speaking about her faith. She went on to say that all God wants us to do is pray for the forgiveness of our sins and that he doesn’t want us to save anyone because we do not have the power to do so, and as long as she has strength in her bones and breath in her lungs, she will walk in the name of Jesus. “I participated today because I was called to do so,” said Marshalla Sitton, who also participated in the walk. “I think in these days in the political climate we are under, we must come together as a unit, as a body in Christ as directed by his word. For me just walking the city and praying for peace and unity for all of the residents of the city and show non-believers that God is real is a wonderful thing and everyone that God needed to be here was here today, and for that I give Him glory.”

While most were participating in the prayer walk, a few individuals did stay behind in the “Prayer Tent” which was set up for individuals who could not walk or anyone just walking past to come by and just have someone pray for them while the group was walking.

Apostle Gloria Samuels of Great Commission Community Church was one of the individuals in the prayer tent and she stated she believes if you are going to birth anything worthwhile, it has to come through prayer. If you can’t love people, you can’t have a relationship with God or whomever you worship and that’s what this walk is all about.

Following the walk, the participants were treated to good music and the fellow-ship of others while they braved the elements in the name of Jesus.

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