Local faith leaders have planned to hold an event at Pikeville City Park to commemorate the National Day of Prayer, which is recognized on May 6.

The National Day of Prayer event will take place at noon in Pikeville City Park. During this year’s event, local leaders plan to say a prayer specifically for seven different areas, which include family, church, business, education, government, military and media, with one person from each area saying the prayer. The public is encouraged to attend.

Debby Bailey, co-pastor of Grace Fellowship Church, said that she and fellow organizers are excited to hold an in-person event for National Day of Prayer this year, since last year’s event was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. She noted that no one will be required to hold hands during the event, and social distancing will be observed in order to prevent COVID-19 spread.

“We’re going to have someone pray the prayer for each of these areas, which are prayed for all across the U.S. at National Day of Prayer events,” Bailey said. “We try to have someone represented from those different areas. We’re not always successful in that, but we try as much as possible.”

This is the 70th year of the commemoration of the National Day of Prayer. This year’s theme for the event, Bailey said, is “Lord, pour out your love, life and liberty,” and the scripture that goes with that theme is, 2 Corinthians 3:17.

Bailey said that it is significant to hold a National Day of Prayer event this year because of how the country has faced difficult times throughout the past year of the COVID-19 pandemic. She said it was important to give people hope, and for her, as a Christian, she said that her source of hope is Jesus.

“The significance is always for us to point people to the source for hope. We’ve gone through difficult and dark times and it’s easy to become discouraged, to just get caught up in the hopelessness that we see around us sometimes. Regardless of what someone’s going through, latching onto that hope is what is going to pull you through whatever your struggle is. We can help each other, but the hope that means the most is the hope that we have in Jesus Christ. That’s where our prayer is focused, is toward Jesus Christ. We show that we want his involvement in all these different areas.”

The event has been sponsored by the Pike County Pikeville Area Ministerial Association.