Gainesville community members gathered Thursday in downtown Gainesville for the return of the annual Prayer on the Square event.
“It's just really beautiful to see just other people just in the state, in this country, just praying for the nation, for our leaders, for everyone,” Nathan Watts, who recently came back from a mission trip in Africa and Asia, said.
He attended the event with two of his friends and said he felt blessed to be there.
The day started with breakfast at the Gainesville Civic Center at 6:30 a.m. The community then at noon on the Historic Gainesville square to celebrate National Day of Prayer.
Maxine Wagner is a co-chair of Hall County Prayer and said the community focused on eight topics of prayer; family, business, life, church, media, education, government and military. Each station of focus is led by a community leader for three minutes at a time.
“We really are conscientious about finding good prayer leaders that know how to pray for three minutes. We do a three minute priority station and then we rotate,” Wagner said.
David Wenger is pastor at Hopewell Baptist Church and was one of the station leaders. He said putting a national focus on prayer allows the community to get together on common ground.
“I believe as a Christian, you know, we pray daily. While our faith might have different expressions and we might worship in different ways, the one thing that unites us is Jesus Christ and our desire to share his hope with the world,” Wenger said.
Elizabeth Chappelle has attended the event every year and said she likes that the community is gathering to pray for the county.
“We are instructed to pray for our leaders. It doesn't matter whether we agree with them or not, or like them, or whatever,” Chappelle said.