Springfield clergy: ‘Pray for our leaders’

Several local clergy members used prayer Friday evening to help the community in the wake of the attacks Wednesday on the US Capitol.

Simunye, a Springfield-based group of pastors and Christian leaders, hosted its first citywide online Zoom prayer meeting on Friday , drawing 30 people to talk about what developed in the nation’s capitol and to pray for strength for America’s leaders and its people going forward.

The hour-long event was led by speakers including Pastor William Randolph of First Baptist Church in Yellow Springs; Pastor David Cotto of Clifton Avenue Church of God; Pastor Bobby Hile, formerly of Southgate Baptist Church and now with ABWE International, a missionary agency; Rev. Eli Williams of Urban Light Ministries; and Pastor Sam Bryant of Cornerstone Baptist Church. The latter four churches are in Springfield.

Williams said he was quite satisfied with the participation considering the meeting was set up quickly after the unrest occurred a little over 48 hours earlier in Washington, D.C.

“We had a good representation of the community and diversity this evening,” he said. “I think God heard our prayers.”

The speakers used the Bible book of 1 Timothy 2:2 as a guide, which mentions “…for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.”

Randolph spoke of praying for people we like and don’t like and that prayer is like having a backstage pass to talk with God one-on-one, while Cotto prayed for those in authority to make sound, wise decisions for our country. Hile stressed leadership should put people first, using the church as a model to guide the people.

Williams relayed being disheartened over the last few years by some people’s attitudes toward those in power, hearing some people say they wouldn’t pray for President Barack Obama and others say the same for President Donald Trump.

“We’re told in the scriptures to pray for our leaders. Their actions are for our lives,” Williams said.

Bryant said there is no right leader to unify the country, but they should turn toward God.

A prayer was also done for outgoing and incoming leaders to weigh to the benefit of the country and a smooth transition of power. The meeting concluded with breakout rooms where participants could share their prayers with their groups.

Williams and Hile said the success of this prayer meeting in connecting people will likely lead to future Simunye-led events. For more information, go to the Celebrate Simunye Facebook page.

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