The City of High Point is joining cities and towns across the Piedmont Triad, the state and the country in celebrating the Multi-Faith National Day Of Prayer on Thursday, May 2. That’s the same day the city opens its shiny new baseball stadium – so the town will be praying in the morning and drinking beer that night.
Jeron Hollis, the director of communications and public engagement for the city, said that, in the past, the city has had a 7 a.m. prayer event and another at 7 p.m. for the late risers – however, he added, this year, thanks to the High Point Rockers baseball team’s home opener that night, there will only be a community prayer event in the morning.
According to Hollis, the morning prayer may include a petition for a good turnout at the game that night.
The prayer event – which is free and open to everyone – is sponsored by the City of High Point Human Relations Commission and is being put on in collaboration with local faith leaders. This is the third year the city has held the Multi-Faith National Day of Prayer, which will be at the High Point Public Library Plaza, located at 901 N. Main St.
The National Day of Prayer is an annual day of observance held on the first Thursday in May each year. The sponsors invite people of all faiths to pray for the nation and their local communities.
According to a press release sent out by the City of High Point, “The local event will place emphasis on the need to pray for community, unity and peace. It will include sacred text reading and prayers from multiple faiths including Atheism, Baha’i, Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam and Judaism.”
Fanta Dorley, the human relations manager for High Point, said the event is as much about bringing people together as it is about prayer. She said it’s a way for people of every faith to collectively share their “best hopes for our community.”
“The purpose is not to bring church to the library,” Dorley said. “It’s really about creating unity in the community.”
When asked about the fact that the city’s press release names atheists as one particular group that’s invited, Hollis said that was to make sure absolutely everyone felt included.
“We don’t have a large atheist turnout,” Hollis said of the National Day of Prayer.