May 7, 2015 --
Marines, Sailors and civilian-Marines from various commands throughout Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany took part in a prayer breakfast held at the Town and Country Restaurant’s Grand Ballroom, here, May 7.
This year’s theme, “Lord, Hear Our Cry,” is based on I Kings 8:28, which states, “Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is praying in your presence this day.”
Col. Don J. Davis, commanding officer, MCLB Albany, welcomed the nearly 40 attendees to the annual event, which also marks the 64th annual National Day of Prayer.
“Today, the need for prayer is as great as ever,” Davis said. “Our nation again faces battlefields along with an epidemic of broken homes, violence and social strife. As the heroes of the past (have done), we must bow our heads in prayer. We must ask the Lord to bless our leaders with wisdom and protection, and to have the fortitude to overcome the challenges at hand.”
Unlike past years, the event featured two speakers: Ira Thompson, inspector general, Marine Corps Logistics Command, and Kurt Bland, deputy director, Communications and Information Systems Division, MCLB Albany.
Speaking first, Thompson read President Barack Obama’s 2015 Day of Prayer Proclamation.
“Today, as we pause in solemn reflection, we celebrate the religious liberty we cherish here at home, and we recommit to standing up for religious freedom around the world,” Obama said.
“For many of us, prayer is an important expression of faith — an essential act of worship and a daily discipline that allows reflection, provides guidance and offers solace,” the president also said in his proclamation.
In addition, the president invited the citizens of the nation to give thanks, in accordance with their own faiths and consciences, for the many freedoms and blessings.
“I join all people of faith in asking for God’s continued guidance, mercy and protection as we seek a more just world,” Obama said.
Thompson, a retired Marine, also spoke of how daily prayer has helped him.
“Esther’s prayer for a Jewish nation to be saved, Nehemiah’s prayer for a wall to be restored and Jesus’ prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane are the catalyst that kept me going during my 30-plus years of Marine Corps service,” he said. “When the pressure came, and it did come, prayer was the answer.”
Bland concluded the event with his speech and benediction.
He challenged the crowd to “not just pray for power, not for power over your situation or sickness, but pray with power. Because when we pray with power, then we are effective.”
Bland said when people pray, God hears their voices.
“Regardless how many times you ask, how many times you make your request known, that as soon as you understand that God heard your prayer, you should change from petitioning God to praising God,” he said.
Petty Officer 1st Class Kishaun Jeffers, hospital corpsman, Naval Branch Health Clinic, Albany, Georgia, observed the National Day of Prayer for the first time.
“I did not even know about the National Day of Prayer,” Jeffers said. “I think this is a great reason to come together. No matter what your background is, we still can come together and celebrate the ability to pray peacefully.”